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Thread: EBF 6 mo & started solids

  1. #1
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    Jun 2014
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    Unhappy EBF 6 mo & started solids

    Hello ladies, this is my 1st post. Thanks for any advice you can share. Okay, my baby girl is 6 months as of 3weeks ago. Since her 6 month check-up with ped, she weighted 14lbs. She's always increased in weight. That's not the problem. I've been totally freaked out on what I believe is low supply. And now ped. told me to start her breakfast/ lunch/ dinner solids.

    Her first 2 weeks were only cereal with breast milk. However; thats when my panic kicked in. Since I've never had to pump. I'm a stay at home mom, and my LO is EBF, I literally got nothing. This was the scariest time for me. I feel like I should be able to have enough milk for my baby's morning cereal. Or be able to pump out milk to store. As the days passed it was a struggle, but just getting by. My ped said I should feed her till she doesn't want anymore. Then in between breastfeed. However; my concern is that she will completely wean off breast milk and I'll lose supply if I do this.

    I'm very conflicted and confused. I don't know why when I pump I'm lucky to get 1oz. She does feed every 2 hrs or more on demand. LC, advised me to feed her then pump. However; I don't know how often I should be pumping & for how long? Those of you with oversupply, store it now! That's awesome! I take 4 pills fenugreek, eat oatmeal am/pm, drink 32oz water bottle 5-6 X daily. Why is this happening? My eating has been off. Sometimes you lose track of eating. Could this be why, I feel low supply? I guess, I'm stressing out due to output of pumping milk. Now that I have to pump for her cereal/solids this has become an issue for me. How do I become an over supplier like many moms? What's the key?

    So, I fed her cereal for 2 weeks. That was a struggle in it self to pump enough for her morning cereal. I usually don't pump more than .05 or 1oz. She does still wake at least 3-4 times at night to feed. Could this be why? Since she is a round the clock feeder I'm not storing much? When she was first born I did pump twice and I did get something like 3-4 ounces ea. boob. That was great.

    Now she should be eating 3x daily. Yikes! I don't want this to end breastfeeding. Help! I haven't followed what ped told me to do because I'm literally lost and scared that she will wean off her milk & and I will lose supply completely. I met with a LC and she told me that I shouldn't be spoon feeding her at 6mo. That I should only be feeding for taste and texture at this point. So now I only give her very little and allow her to play with spoon only. I only allow this once or twice daily. Is this okay? Will she be affected nutritionally if I don't follow docs orders with solids.

    My baby girl is healthy and has always gained weight at every check-up. Thank god! Today we visited ped. Due to ear infection. She weighed 15Lbs.12oz. How awesome is that. Once again she's gained weight since last visit 3weeks ago. I mentioned to ped that I'm concerned about her weaning off the breast milk since he wants me to start solids 3X daily. I felt as if he didn't agree with me. He told me, that she needs her foods. He said feed her first than breastfeed. However; my LC told me opposite. She said always breastfeed first than let her just explore the food. Because if not she will self wean and breastfeeding will be over. So Im very conflicted and confused. Because they are totally opposite of what to do. You think your ped would be giving same advise. It's confused me. I don't want to cause my daughter any malnutrition of any sort.

    Ladies here's my short term goal BF up to 1 yr. if I can easily make that goal, then go for another year. I feel that my ped. Isn't gonna like my decision but I am her mother and that's my choice, Right? With that said my husband piggy backs with whatever ped says. Since he's the doc! Like my husband says "well your not the doctor he's telling you for a reason". Ugh... Its so important to maintain our special bonding time. Not only that, the benefits of breast milk do wonders. So mamas please tell me how you are making this work? How do I reach my overall goal? Sorry for such a lengthy post. But I'm seriously stressing out . Thanks for any advice.
    Last edited by @llli*american.honey; June 14th, 2014 at 07:15 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: EBF 6 mo & started solids

    Hi and welcome. I want to help, but I am a little confused about what your concerns are. Aside from what the LC and the doctor say, which is conflicting and confusing, what Do you think? Do you think baby should be eating solids more, less? Nursing more, less? If weight gain is normal, what is the concern? Baby was 14 lbs at 6 months, or 15 lbs 12 ounces? I am confused.

    Generally, As far as solids- basically, the pediatrician is wrong and your LC is right. It's that simple. Many babies eat NO solids at this age, and for all breastfed babies, breastmilk remains (or should, nutritionally speaking) by far the primary source of nutrition for at least the first year and often longer. You ARE your baby's mother. The pediatrician is there for medical advice & treatment- like for the ear infection. Is there a medical issue with your child's weight gain or not? If not, the suggestion about how, when and what to give baby to eat are parenting advice. On the other hand, I would not say that if you don't nurse before every meal its the end of breastfeeding. My daughter is almost two and still nursing, even though I usually nursed her after eating, simply because I did not have time to nurse before giving her a meal because I was making food for everyone else in my family at that time. On the other hand, I did not offer any food until she was 7 months old and only offered food sporadically at first. Once a day or less often.

    But I am not saying that is how YOU should do it. Every baby is different. As long as you are being careful that solids are 'extra' , for fun and learning, and not given in such a way that they REPLACE breastfeeding with the solid foods, (or liquids like water or juice) you can introduce solids any way you like.

    What you pump- Maybe it's the pump. Some pumps do not work very well, or are malfunctioning, or a part is missing or is in poor condition. Maybe the fit is off. And some moms just do not produce well for a pump.
    Also, what you pump when you are nursing baby around the clock (rather than, for example, at work and pumping during separations) is EXTRA. So there is no reason it should be much.

    Here is a nice article about how to nurse to at least a year. Maybe this will help? http://www.lalecheleague.org/nb/nbjanfeb06p4.html and here is some info on starting solids: http://kellymom.com/nutrition/starti...ds/solids-how/ and http://www.lalecheleague.org/faq/solids.html

    A good book on the subject of food and babies and children is My Child Won't Eat by Carlos Gonzalez. The author explains how most firm and limiting "instructions" for introducing solids (start solids at exactly 6 months, feed baby three times a day, feed baby X, Y or Z first, feed baby and then nurse, etc,) are not based on science or research and often do more harm than good.

  3. #3
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    Jun 2014
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    Default Re: EBF 6 mo & started solids

    Hello and sorry for the confusion. My baby girl weighted 14lbs, at her 6 month check-up almost 3 weeks ago. Yesterday, visiting the Ped. She weighted 15lbs. 120z. She has no gaining issues. My questions are simple. How do I increase supple? How do I introduce solids without baby weaning off Breast milk? Is my child lacking an nutritional value by not feeding her 3X daily, as per Ped. How often and when do I pump for storage? Hope that explains my concerns.
    I wrote the posting half a sleep. Lol... Let me revise. Thanks again!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: EBF 6 mo & started solids

    Definitely read the book My Child Won't Eat by Carlos Gonzalez
    You can get it for download through amazon if you don't want to wait for a hard copy.

    Now I'm going to regurgitate info that I've read over and over since I'm definitely not an expert here, but most women tend to do a pumping session after the first morning feeding since supply tends to be high then. If you are 100% breastfeeding, don't expect to get alot out with the pump, especially not at first. It takes practice to pump and not all people respond well to the pumps either. Doing breast massage before and breast compressions during pumping can help as can using a warm pack.

    But you can make the cereal with water and she is gaining very well so you really don't need to push solids, as meg and your LC say, solids are not really mandatory during the first year, they are more for experience so don't stress yourself out. Breastfeed before solid meals.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: EBF 6 mo & started solids

    She weighted 15lbs. 120z. She has no gaining issues. My questions are simple. How do I increase supple?
    If your baby has no problems gaining weight, you do not need to do anything to increase your supply. Your supply is just right!

    If you need to increase your supply- and it sounds like you don't!- here's how you do it:
    1. Nurse on demand.
    2. If baby is demanding to nurse less than 8 times a day, offer the breast more frequently. At 6 months, many babies are very distractable, so offering in a calm, dimly lit place (e.g. a darkened bedroom) may result in more nursing.
    3. If baby is sleeping long stretches at night, wake her up and nurse her. If she is sleeping swaddled, or with a pacifier, removing those 2 sleep-extending tools may result in more spontaneous wake-ups.
    4. Pump after feedings, using a good quality pump with correctly sized shields.
    5. Pump consistently. A single pump session at a random time will not result in much milk yield or offer you much in the way of increased supply, though it absolutely won't hurt to slip in a random session. But pumping at approximately the same time of day every day for many days in a row should result in a boosted supply.
    6. Keep your expectations realistic. A mom who is nursing on demand will not have much milk to pump out after nursing. In fact, she may yield nothing at all, especially when she first begins pumping.
    7. Review your contraception choices. One thing which can impact supply or prevent it from increasing is hormonal contraception; if a mom really needs to increase supply, she may want to switch from hormonal contraception to a barrier method or other non-hormonal option.

    How do I introduce solids without baby weaning off Breast milk?
    Once solids are introduced, you have begun the weaning process. What you might not realize is that weaning is a process which can extend for several years after solids are intorudiced. For example, I started solids around 6 months with both my kids, and they both continued to nurse until age 3.

    Here are some tips for keeping solids from resulting in early weaning:
    1. Remember that until the first birthday, solids are for fun with new tastes, textures, and motor skills. They are not necessary for nutrition, as breastmilk or formula alone should be the baby's majority source of calories until the first birthday. After the first birthday, solids intake may increase or the baby may want to remain mostly breastfed well into the second year; many babies do not transition to a majority solids diet until 18 months or so.
    2. Until a year, offer solids only after you have nursed. That way baby fills up on milk, and solids are just for fun.
    3. Offer reasonable amounts. At 6 months, a teaspoon or two of solid food a day is sufficient. As you get closer to a year, the baby's intake of solids may increase, or the baby may remain mostly breastfed.
    4. Follow your baby's cues. If your baby is opening her mouth for the spoons leaning forward eagerly, she's interested. If she closes her mouth or would rather play with her food, she's not interested in eating.
    5. Remember that solids are for fun! Touching/smearing/smashing/throwing solids is all part of the learning process, and should not be discouraged. (Well, maybe throwing. ) Expect things to get messy, and try to embrace the mess as a sign that your child is learning something new and fun.
    6. Look into something called "baby-led weaning" or "baby-led solids"- there are lots of threads here on the forum about both- for an approach that emphasizes self-feeding, generally skips purees and cereals, and can lead to better self-regulation of solid food intake.

    Is my child lacking an nutritional value by not feeding her 3X daily, as per Ped.
    NO. Bad, outdated advice, meant for a mom who wants to wean from breast or bottle as quickly as possible.

    How often and when do I pump for storage?
    It depends on what your goals are. Are you wanting to incorporate the occasional bottle for a sitter, or are you going back to full-time work? Or something in between?
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  6. #6
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    Default Re: EBF 6 mo & started solids

    My baby girl weighted 14lbs, at her 6 month check-up almost 3 weeks ago. Yesterday, visiting the Ped. She weighted 15lbs. 120z.
    Baby gained almost two pounds in 3 weeks- That is fast gain for this age. This does not mean there is anything wrong, but I certainly concur with mommal, that kind of gain shows baby is getting plenty to eat. (And do not be alarmed if baby begins to gain less rapidly now that baby is older than 6 months, that is normal too.)

    Your breastmilk is the most nutritionally compete single food your child can eat or will EVER eat, in their life. Really. If an adult were stranded on a desert island and could have all they wanted of only one single food, breastmilk would keep that adult alive longer than anything else.

    Solids are mostly for fun and learning to eat at this age, and not for nutrition.

    If you are under the impression you need to make more milk (increase your daily production) as your baby gets bigger and older, please know that is a common misconception and is not correct. A breastfed baby requires approximately the same amount of milk each day from about 6 weeks of age onward, until solids start replacing milk nutritionally. Nursing patterns may change as baby gets older but generally baby is getting & needing about the same amount of milk overall.

    If your concern is your pump output, I agree with mommal-what to do about that depends in part on what you need the expressed milk for. Unless you need to give baby bottles due to separations, there is usually no reason to pump. I understand you want to give your baby your milk with her cereal, and this is fine, but I would suggest that this is not necessary and in fact, baby cereal itself is not necessary as an introductory food.

    It sounds to me as if baby is doing great. I am sorry the conflicting advice has worried you.
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; June 14th, 2014 at 10:36 AM.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: EBF 6 mo & started solids

    Agree with PPs! The fact that your baby is gaining well means that your supply is fine. No need to pump to increase it further. Or for cereal. With my first two babies I did the traditional cereals and purees. Then I started hanging out on these forums and found out about baby-led solids and skipped the cereals and the purees with my third baby. As LLLMeg says there isn't a nutritional need for cereals, they are more or less just "fillers" without much nutritional value, and your baby is perfectly fine getting milk straight from the breast rather than mixed in with cereal. The key to maintaining your nursing relationship is to nurse often. Personally I did follow the advice of nursing before solids most of the time, and since I work, I favored nursing over solids when I was together with my baby. As for bad advice from pediatricians, I have a great pediatrician, but he gives terrible advice when it comes to anything breastfeeding related. So I ignore it. In my experience a 6 month old baby might eat a bit here and a bit there - certainly not three meals a day! Again, with my first two babies I was under the impression that baby was supposed to be eating a certain amount per day of solids. Again by hanging out on here I found out how much solids an infant eats really doesn't matter. So I was much more relaxed in that regard with the third one. She is 27 months now, still nursing, and loves her solids too! It sounds like you are doing great and you have great instincts.

  8. #8
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    Jun 2014
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    Default Re: EBF 6 mo & started solids

    Sorry ladies for taking so long to respond back. However; I really do appreciate the advice and suggestion given. I'm really glad to know I'm not the only one going through these kinds of issues. I feel much better knowing am not alone and I can always reach out for advice from other mamas.
    I will change up a few things with my daughter, but for the most part we can rest assure and enjoy our bonding time. The reason I wanted to pump more is strictly for future stash. I'm not planning to leave her with anyone or going to work. Actually, I wanted to have a good amount saved so when she does start eating more solids I can mix BM instead of water. I do know that when you freeze your milk it taste different when thawed. I believe it also looses some nutritional value. What do you ladies recommend? As far as the baby cereal that will be totally cut from her choices. I didn't know it really has no nutritional value for her. Instead I've allowed her to explore with avocado and banana. I'm only giving her solids twice a week. Do you ladies think that's fine?
    As far as pediatricians they are trained to believe certain things, but I've always thought 6mos-1yr is way too little for foods. My husband feels way better also with holding back solids. Since I've been researching this topic more. It's just some-what annoying when everyone wants to put their two cents in. Anyways, baby and I are adjusting just fine. Thanks LLL mamas.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: EBF 6 mo & started solids

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*american.honey View Post
    Instead I've allowed her to explore with avocado and banana. I'm only giving her solids twice a week. Do you ladies think that's fine?
    I think that sounds perfect!
    Part of being a parent is learning to ignore all the two-cents thrown your way .
    If you do want to mix breastmilk in with food, I wouldn't worry too much about whether it's been previously frozen - if baby is mostly getting her milk straight from the tap, she is getting all the nutritional benefits of fresh breastmilk. But it also makes me wonder what baby has to gain from breastmilk in her solid food? ie, if she's getting all the breastmilk she needs from nursing, I don't think she necessarily needs it mixed in with the food as well. Sounds like you have established a great nursing relationship, and don't have any long separations planned, so why bother with pumping?

  10. #10
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    Default Re: EBF 6 mo & started solids

    with Bfwmomof3. I really don't think you need to pump unless you really want to.

    When it comes to solids, I wouldn't "hold back" solids. Feeding a child solids doesn't have to translate to regular intervals of shoving a spoon in her face. Instead, you can approach solids by thinking of them as a fun new learning experience. Let the baby touch them, taste them, squish them, lick them- even eat them!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

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