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Thread: Is my 9-month-old self-weaning???

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    5

    Exclamation Is my 9-month-old self-weaning???

    I'm looking for some advice. My 9-month-old has become much more interested in solids than in nursing. He eats a ton of food, but has cut way back on his nursing. I'm at home with him four days per week and work the three others. I used to pump 6 oz. twice per day while at work, but am now only pumping about 4 ounces once in the afternoon. At home, he nurses about 10 minutes each breast in the morning and evening, but the other nursing times are very minimal, and he obviously isn't getting much at those times for my pumping session to be so minimal. Dr. says his growth curve is fine. So -- is he self-weaning? Is that okay? Is he getting enough nutrition with his solids (and I give him a liquid multivitamin)? I'm anxious to hear what anyone has to offer!
    Thanks!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    683

    Default Re: Is my 9-month-old self-weaning???

    Hi Max'sMom! I also have a Max (he's a Maxwell -- is your's as well?) --

    Research/evidence tells us that unless there's some sort of outside factor (mom's pregnant or unavailable for a large portion of the day, for example) that a baby won't typically self-wean prior to age 2 and definately never before the age of 1.

    That said, weaning is a very long process (that is different for every child) that begins from the moment we give our babies something other than the breast. It could be that your son is simply taking in too many solids. Do you feel as though his diet is composed mainly of breastmilk at this point? If not then you may want to consider cutting back on the solids a bit and offering to nurse more often. Your breastmilk should make up the majority of his diet for the first full year of life. Anything else that you give him is less nutritious. It's often suggested that we nurse our babies right before offering a small amount of solid food and then offer to nurse again after the solid food has been offered.

    It's also just possible that your son is more efficient with his nursing in his "old" age LOL. A good rule of thumb is to "watch the baby, not the clock." And, a 9 month old is also very highly distractible so when you nurse him you may want to try a dark and quiet room if you aren't already.

    Also, what you yield with a breast pump is not indicative of what baby receives while nursing directly. A baby is always much more efficient at removing milk from the breast than the best breast pump on the market. So I wouldn't necessarily use what you pump as a measurement for what baby is getting when he nurses.

    I hope this helps you a bit. If not, let us know! We're here to help.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    Default Re: Is my 9-month-old self-weaning???

    Thanks so much for your reply! My little guy is just "Max". Just in the last couple weeks, no, he has not been getting most of his nourishment from the breast -- he eats a lot and hasn't been nursing nearly as much. I appreciate your advice and think that makes sense to nurse him before his solid food, filling up more on the breast milk. What I'm afraid of is that my milk supply has decreased dramatically in the last couple weeks since this has been going on. How do you recommend I get it back up?? Also, since I take the milk that I express to his daycare, how can I increase the amount I am pumping at work so they can offer it to him before his lunch?

    Thanks for your help!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    683

    Default Re: Is my 9-month-old self-weaning???

    What I'm afraid of is that my milk supply has decreased dramatically in the last couple weeks since this has been going on. How do you recommend I get it back up?? Also, since I take the milk that I express to his daycare, how can I increase the amount I am pumping at work so they can offer it to him before his lunch?
    Just remember that no matter what, milk supply depends on the concept of supply & demand. So, if the demand increases your supply will too. A baby is much better at stimulating the breast than a pump is but if baby won't stay on the breast very long then you could always use the pump to stimulate your breasts. Really, it shouldn't take your body very long to adjust to the increased demand -- 24 to 48 hours....maybe 72. Nurse baby as you usually do and if he'll tolerate it, switch him back to the first side after he's nursed the 2nd side. Then again, if he'll tolerate it, back to the 2nd side again. If he won't tolerate it, try pumping for 10 minutes or so after he's nursed. You probably won't get a whole lot with the pump but that's okay -- you're looking to stimulate the breasts. They'll catch up in a day or so

    To increase the amount that you are pumping at work, just try to pump for 10 minutes longer than you normally do and perhaps incorporate one or two more sessions in if you can. Again, the basic premise of supply and demand You may want to visit our Pumping board here to see what they have to offer in terms of suggestions too.

    Hope this helps some more I think this will be relatively easy to overcome.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    5

    Thumbs up Re: Is my 9-month-old self-weaning???

    Thanks for your advice -- it was perfect! I started nursing BEFORE offering solid foods. He is nursing a lot more, and eating less solids. My milk supply has increased again, and he seems satisfied and happy! We'll see how the pumping goes when I am back at work next week. Can't thank you enough -- this forum is really a blessing!!

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