Childhood Diseases

Posted by: GA | 2013-02-20


how to stop breastfeeding from child of 17months old

what can i do or use to stop breastfeeding?

Expert's Reply



I am sure that one of our regular paediatric forum members will offer you some advice. It will also help to send your question to our breastfeeding forum on Health24.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

user comments


Posted by: Purple | 2013-02-20

Sometimes looking at why you want to stop breastfeeding helps show the best way to stop. In general though, the more slowly and gently you bring breastfeeding to an end, the easier it is on both you and baby. It is an emotional time for you both once you wean, and can be phsycially painful for you if it goes too fast.

The world health organisation recommends breastfeeding until at least age two, but if you don''t want to continue, then there are ways to gently end the breastfeeding relationship.

Do bear in mind that weaning won''t end night waking. Babies wake for numerous reasons, and its normal for children to wake at night. They only really start to sleep through with regularity between about two and three years of age. Weaning before then can leave you with one less tool for getting toddler back to sleep quickly.
Breastfeeding is a mothering tood and can help to calm tantrums down, be some nutritional insurance if your toddler is going through a picky eating phase or is ill and off their food, and because toddlers are drinking such small amounts of breastmilk, its really packed with antibodies and nutrition.

Some moms find that a sort of half way point - not seeing weaning as all or nothing helps, so they set some rules such as only feeding when at home, or only at night or whatever suits their situation. Toddlers start learning about limit setting and taking others feelings into account through breastfeeding too. Many toddlers only have a long feed morning and evening and the rest of the time its just a sip here and there.

To wean, it can help to start by setting some rules like mentioned above.
Then, cutting feedings shorter by having a special song to sing, which can be sung as fast or slow as needed and the feeding session ends when the song ends.
Some mothers find that a don''t offer don''t refuse policy works, and this can be implemented during the allowed feeding times.
When baby does ask for feeds, offering a drink of water or juice or a nice ice lolly or some food can help, or sometimes if toddler was just bored, distraction in the form of a game or story can help too.
Some mothers end breastfeeding by working towards a set date such as a visit to grandma or a trip to the zoo - so they implement whiever strategies work for them and then talk about how when they have this trip, the feed before they go there will be the last one, and they talk it through and prepare for this day, and then when the time is right they take the trip and end feeding.

Remember that lots of extra cuddling is needed during weaning, as its a hard time for baby. It can also help to introduce a special comfort object for bed time and nap times.

After investing so much in getting breastfeeding off to a good start, it pays to end the breastfeeding relationship gently and as easily on both of you as possible.

If baby gets irritable, starts having lots of tantrums, is very whiny and difficult, it can be a sign to slow down the pace a little again.

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