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Thread: 6 mo old constantly coming off

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007

    Default 6 mo old constantly coming off

    I have a 6 month old who I planned to breastfeed for the entire year. Now we are experiencing some problems that I am not sure how to address. It has always been difficult for us. I have had supply issues in the past and supplemented, pumped, fenugreeked, etc, but the ONLY thing that worked for us was for me just to constantly feed her. We have had other various breastfeeding issues too.

    But lately almost every time I nurse her, she sucks for a few seconds, pulls off and tries to pull herself up. Then she arches her back like she wants to latch on again--sometimes she does latch on again and sometimes she just screams at me. I usually switch her to the other side, which helps a little bit, but then we go through the whole pattern again of sucking a few times, sitting up, and then arching back down to latch back on. I switch sides when she just screams and won't latch on to that side at all. I eventually just give up and give her the pacifier until we can try it again. She is usually pretty content with that and will go play or take a nap or something. But she can't be getting near enough food.

    Is this a nursing strike, supply issue, weaning sign? Is she frustrated that the flow is not fast enough? What does everyone think? I try to burp her and that doesn't seem to help, plus it just pisses her off more. She is kinda tempermental anyways though. I also try different positions, laying down, walking around, etc. Nothing seems to help.

    This has gone on for a few days and I am worried that I am losing supply. I started her on solids recently and I think it has gotten worse since I started her on solids, but I am pretty sure she was doing some of this before.

    I did try to give her a bottle of formula this morning (which she has had before) and she doesn't have any interest in taking it. She apparently wants to nurse I think, but is becoming frustrated by it or something. I am going to probably increase her solids a little to see if that helps. She is only about 13.5 lbs at 6 mo and that worries me a little. She has gained around a lb since her 4 mo well check and I know she should have really gained closer to 2. She has fat rolls though and stuff so the ped was worried at her 4 mo.

    Any ideas?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Swartz Creek, MI

    Default Re: 6 mo old constantly coming off

    I am not sure, but my 6mo gets distracted very easily!! I mean any and everything. And he poops off. It took a while to get use to this. I doesn't really bother me much now. (Except when I need to do something). It just means I get to sit down long with him (my excuse for not doing anything heheeh). Try nursing in a nice quiet room if possible. Or singing to her to keep her attention on you
    Married mama with 4 kiddos...2 girls (11 & 6) and 2 boys (21mo & 3mo)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007

    Default Re: 6 mo old constantly coming off

    I experienced the same thing with my boy around that time. In fact at 8 mos he still occasionally does the popping off thing. It is annoying, time consuming and sometimes I have to just let him be while I use the pump to express the milk. Otherwise my supply will go down. Try to put the baby down, use the pump and let her come back on the breast later. Babies are so distracted by everything - lights, outside noise, TV, your movements. They will come off to laugh, baby talk or look around. Also try to go in a dark room that is quiet and catch her when she is about to nap or waking up from a nap. I find the best time for my son to latch and stay on is when he is sleepy.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008

    Default Re: 6 mo old constantly coming off

    Sounds exactly like my 7.5 mo old. I'm already stressed b/c my I'm not pumping anything out. I'm tempted to buy a wrap to put on top of her while she feeds b/c she just pulls the blanket off. We've had very short feeding sessions today. Seriously no more than 10 mins total for all three feedings. We'll see how this evening goes.

    So I'm not sure what to tell you. Here's a for you though.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006

    Default Re: 6 mo old constantly coming off

    How often are you feeding her? Perhaps shes not hungry yet?

    Another thought, could she be getting impatient waiting for letdown? Can you try triggering your letdown before latching her on (manual expression) so that she gets instant milk?

    I agree with the PP though, 6 months is a very distractible age.

    Nursing the girl with kaleidoscope eyes

    Mama to Daniel (12/3/06) and Lucy Jane (8/28/08)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: 6 mo old constantly coming off


    How are things going for you today? Are you still experiencing the same problems? to you, mama.

    Many moms find that retreating to a darkened room several times a day can help when a baby is too distractable to nurse effectively. Previous posters have given you a lot of good suggestions on this point.

    It could also be teething, as six months is a common age to be cutting teeth. Teething can make nursing painful for some babies. You could try offering a chilled teether to baby before nursing, to see if that helps. You might also consult with your health care provider about appropriate over the counter teething remedies.

    How is baby's diaper output? Is she still having plenty of wet/poopy diapers? Diaper output is the best indicator of whether or not baby is getting enough to eat. If diaper output is good, then there's a chance, as danalynclark suggested, that she isn't really hungry. A lot of babies this age become very efficient at the breast, taking in a full feeding in just a few minutes.

    I hope that helps. Hang in there, mama!


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2008

    Smile Re: 6 mo old constantly coming off

    My six month old does this too. I have to feed her somewhere quiet and found that sometimes I was annoying her trying to feed her too often. Hope she settles down soon.

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