The oral stage of psychosexual development begins at birth and extends to roughly 18 months of age.
Because the oral area is the major erogenous zone at this time, the child seems to be constantly seeking oral stimulation, putting many things in the mouth besides food because it feels good. Taking in food orally represents nourishment and survival, but also transcends this instinct to represent nurturing, loving care, symbolized by suckling a mother's breast.
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