When is breastfeeding not so great?
Well never really, but reducing breastfeeding at end of first year is important to allow the exploration and ingestion of new foods. Recently I have seen babies who so love their breastfeeds that at almost 12 months they have not started to eat. Because they are not eating, then they want more milk and mum feels, “well they need more if they are not eating”, and a cycle develops.
Babies who are solely breastfeeding at 12 months will start to slow down in weight gain. Or feed more to keep it up.
The first step to reducing the breast-feeds is trying to see if you are feeding her because she is hungry, out of habit, or does she expect a breastfeed if she is upset. No baby really needs a breastfeed 3 hourly after 4-5 months. So gradually spacing the feeds to at least 4 hourly , even 5hrs and offering food in the space. This may take some support if the baby is especially demanding. Go for a walk, visit the shopping centre so he is distracted, get his Nana to step in for an hour then offer food with the feed afterwards.
If he is nearly 12 months then he will understand simple messages. “No breast now, later” and offer an alternate engagement with mum so it is not a rejection. This struggle is a common referral for my practice.
Do you and your child need further assistance?
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