6 month old going off breastfeeding - any way to boost?(7 Posts)
I EBF ds until about 16 weeks when I introduced a bottle of formula before bed to give me a couple of hours off in the evening as he fed every 2 hours. Until just before Christmas he still fed every 2-3 hours with 1 feed during the night.
Over Christmas he was ill and teething so I gave him more bottles during the day as BF seemed painful and distressing but he still BF during the night and in the morning. However the past few days he seems to have gone off that - he will feed for a minute or so on the left sometimes between feeds but won't even put the right one on his mouth. He's not distressed when he does this so I don't know what is going on.
Is there any point in persevering trying to get him to feed or should I just accept that it may be the end of BF? And if I persevere what can I do to give it a boost and help things?
I should mention we've also started giving him pureed veg this week.
Would you say you have slowish flow? Because this sounds a lot like what happened to me, which I think was flow preference or what is also called nipple confusion or bottle preference. My flow isn't particularly fast, and my baby wasn't stupid, he worked out that bottles were much less work (I've read this can happen when they are teething too). I couldn't even get him into feeding position before he was fighting and crying. In our case we caught it early and going cold turkey on the bottles resolved it- but it wasn't fun doing that, and ditching all bottles may not be the right thing for you to do, only you will know if it is. Your priority is a happy well fed baby, so please feel confident that whatever you do, as long as you've achieved that you've done the right thing.
Oh, in terms of giving a boost, oats, fennel tea and fenugreek are often said to boost supply.
How does going cold turkey on the bottles work? If he won't BF?
Oh, yes, would have been helpful if I'd explained that better, sorry. What I found (and it may not be the case for you, so really sorry if what I said turns out to be no help whatsoever) is that if I started him off on the bottle and then quickly switched, he would then continue to feed from me. I use nipple shields for other reasons but did read suggestions at the time that using them when you don't normally can help with 'fooling' the baby during the switch. Sometimes it would take multiple attempts, helps if you stimulate let down first by hand expressing. We had a couple of days of that and then no more crying when I tried to feed him. I've mostly stayed away from bottles since but he has had the odd one with no problem, I make sure my partner gives it, not me.
Other things that were suggested to me at the time that might help: trying a different feeding position (more upright, perhaps, or in our case lying him down and having it 'dropped in' to his mouth like a bottle helped), feeding in the bath, feeding when sleepy, and finally skin to skin, trying to get baby to latch with no pressure to feed as such. Good luck, whatever you decide.
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