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For those who did BF and BLW - when did you stop night feeds?

(23 Posts)
agirlcalledvicky Sat 22-Jan-11 08:51:16

I suspect DS (6 months) would be OK dropping his one short feed in the night but everything I have read says wait until they are well established on three meals of solids a day.

As we are BLW I am guessing the three good meals a day could take months. As he is relying on milk for calories am I best sticking with his night feed for a good while yet?

If you EBF then did BLW when did you stop feeding in the night and how did you go about it? Thanks!

Shipscat Sat 22-Jan-11 08:56:19

Watching with interest, as DD still feeds once or twice in the night at 13 months!

HettyAmaretti Sat 22-Jan-11 09:02:55

!4 months for my two, I didn't have the energy to phase them out. But, if you think your DS would be happy to drop his then go with it. Gradually shortening the feed works well, also it's well worth offering water before feeding at night, in case it's just thirst.

littleducks Sat 22-Jan-11 09:07:29

It really depends on the child, with dd i was still feeding (more than once) at night till i stopped bfing at about 15 months

With ds i wasnt keen to repeat that and stopped night feeds at 6/7 months

Zimm Sat 22-Jan-11 12:07:09

How do you stop night feeding? Is it a case of just switching to rocking/soothing back to sleep when they wake instead of sticking a boob in their mouths? EBF DD is 5.5 months and wakes up 2-4 times in the night but I doubt more then one of those is due to hunger... she used to sleep through so i know she can take enough during the day. sorry slight thread hijack, just curious.

MoonUnitAlpha Sat 22-Jan-11 12:30:07

Zimm, at 5 months my ds was waking several times a night, so I started just feeding at 10.30ish and 3ish, and any other waking DP settled him back to sleep. Within a week or so he was only waking for those feeds.

Now that he's eating a bit during the day (2-3 "meals") the 3ish feed has crept back to 4ish, and sometimes as late as 6-6.30am.

RubyBuckleberry Sat 22-Jan-11 13:20:40

tried at eight months. was a disaster. lots of crying tried at ten and a half months. slept ten hours next night and only grumbled on first night. amazing. didn't get rid of 5am feed until about 15 months. it was basically the last feed and then we stopped completely. miss the closeness and ability to soothe/comfort him though lol.

belindarose Sat 22-Jan-11 15:05:51

Cold turkey at night at 15 mo. Been on 3 good meals plus snacks and bf since 7 months at the latest and showed no sign of dropping the feeds voluntarily! She did, however, accept it straight away. Just been night feeding again this week as she's poorly and hasn't eaten. Hope she stops easily again!

megonthemoon Sun 23-Jan-11 17:11:57

Between 9 and 10mo. But he was by then eating a decent amount of his 3 meals and snacks each day and had been for around a month. Also it was a dreamfeed rather than me waiting for him to wake so night feeds were more under my control iyswim

doricpatter Sun 23-Jan-11 17:16:35

2yrs 3months. The night feeds were the last to go, so that was him self-weaning. Sorry, possibly not what you wanted to hear!

browneyesblue Mon 24-Jan-11 00:47:05

DS has just turned 10 months, and has just started missing the odd night feed (we were down to 1 or 2 a night). He has slept through twice in the last week grin

We started BLW at 6 months, and in the last month he has really started eating a lot.

Mothigail Mon 24-Jan-11 07:07:26

Watching with interest, too.

DS is 6 months, EBF until now, and now BLW. The HV I spoke to last week said he "should be" sleeping through, and if he has self-settling skillz (he gets himself to sleep at 7pm without boob-in-mouth) then he'll "soon stop waking up". I'm not holding out for that, though.

Having said that, I am at the stage of having NO CLUE whatsoever whether the night time fussings/wakings/tears are hunger or Something Else. We feed a couple of times to be sure and DH gets him back to sleep the other times. I feel like a bit of an idiot mother not really understanding at all what DS is "saying".

Confusedamundo. Perhaps DS is, too!

mnistooaddictive Mon 24-Jan-11 07:18:23

Both my dc slept through by 4 months. This didn't change when blw. I am quite aware they are not usual though!

agirlcalledvicky Mon 24-Jan-11 08:46:02

Its so hard to know isn't it? I feed DS when he wakes at 3amish and he falls asleep during this feed and wakes 6.30-7am. His is never really hungry at 7am and will only have a few sucks until 9amish before his morning nap when he'll a reasonable feed.

He does occasionally wake 12am and I just shush him and pat his tummy and he (usually) goes back to sleep quite quickly so he can self settle. Don't think this will be the case with the 3am feed as if I don't feed him straight away (if I go for a pee) then he quickly goes apeshit. I'm with you Mothigail - I can't see him stopping waking up on his own any time soon.

Suppose I could try the cold turkey for a few nights and if it doesn't work then try again in a few months like Rubybuckleberry. Is going cold turkey the way to go and how did you settle them back down?

RJandA Mon 24-Jan-11 20:07:16

Have you tried a dream feed? At about 7 months I think I introduced this, and DD stopped waking during the night instantly (to my utter amazement!). DD is small too, at 7 months she was somewhere between 9th and 25th centiles I think.

Think I'm right in saying that by 6 months nearly all babies are pysiologically capable of sleeping though, whether they actually do or not will depend on the particular baby, and how strict you are prepared to be.

AngelDog Thu 27-Jan-11 20:58:30

Not yet at 13 months but I feed for comfort/to get him back to sleep, not necessarily nutrition. At 7/8 months he slept very well but woke properly hungry around 4am. He was eating lots at 3 meals a day from 6 months.

The 6 month thing is that you won't harm a baby's health by not feeding at night. That's not to say they'll be happy with the situation though. Missing a couple of meals wouldn't harm my health, but it'd certainly have me waking hungry in the night. grin

sheeplikessleep Thu 27-Jan-11 21:05:36

10 months.

Spent about a fortnight of cold turkey with no night feeds, with DH rocking/cuddling/patting him back to sleep instead. He went from 4 wakes a night, down to 1-2. We then (1) made sure DS2 was awake when put in his cot at 7pm and (2) did controlled crying. TBH, the cc took 2 checks, 6 minutes of crying before he fell back asleep. He now sleeps through until 5am (just about to try working out how to delay that wake up!).

I wouldn't have done it any sooner. By 10 months, he was dropping daytime feeds, eating like a trooper and just generally seems to be feeding like a toddler, rather than a baby (in terms of amount he eats and frequency, proportion of milk to food etc).

mamaelephant Thu 15-Sep-11 23:28:56

Glad other people are having the same problem, in a funny way! DD is 10 mo, and wakes twice every night, around 3 and 5am. I feed her back to sleep as the easiest way of getting some sleep myself blush but don't know why she's doing this at all - until 6 mo, she was sleeping through every night quite happily...

BertieBotts Thu 15-Sep-11 23:31:38

DS stopped by himself somewhere around 2 and a half, a few months after I moved him into his own room. Just to give you hope that they do (eventually) get there whatever you do! smile

gourd Sat 17-Sep-11 13:30:34

Our daughter stopped night waking at 6 weeks old. We did BLW from around 22-24 weeks. She didn't really "drop" any day time breastfeeds though until about 8-9 months, but at that point she suddenly stopped having any breastfeeds at all except for one feed first thing and one feed last thing before bed. What she did was to gradually increase the amount of food she was eating between 6 and 8 months and although she was still breastfeeding every 3 hours, she fed for shorter and shorter periods of time, till she was only breastfeeding for around 5-10 minutes at a time, so I knew she wasn't having very much milk at each feeds, and was possibly deriving more comfort from it than nutrition. At that point I didn't feel bad about starting to try to distract her (with songs, books and play) for longer and longer between feeds to try to get the frequency down as well, whilst at the same time offering food every 2-3 hours - so I knew she was being well enough fed.

I suggest simply offering solid food more frequently throughout the day - every 2-3 hours, and sit and eat with your baby, even if it's just some fruit and a cup of tea for you, it will encourage your child to eat if you eat with them. Our LO has always enjoyed food but it wasn't till around 8 months when she started to eat as though food was something more than just a fun added extra to breastfeeds.

I think once your baby is eating a substantial amount and breastfeeding only for short periods at a time, you can assume that it's more for comfort or out of habit than for nutrition so you don't need to feel guilty about stopping night feeds at that point - you can of course change baby's nappy when she wakes and maybe offer a drink of water so you know your baby is comfortable, but I think to keep offering the breast if she's really using it more for comfort than for nutrition isn't necessary - particularly if your baby can derive comfort in another way - does your baby have a soft toy or teddy to cuddle? Ours has had a strong bond with her teddy sine she was 8 months and I think that helps a lot with keeping her happy in bed on her own for longer. Night waking and then not self-settling can be for many reasons, including boredom, lack of comfort, teething and separation anxiety, and is not necessarily down to hunger - but whatever you method you use to get them back to sleep (whether it's offering comfort in other ways, or simply carrying on breastfeeding at night), be sure it is something that you can put up with having to do for a long time - as you may have to!

ScaryFairy28 Tue 20-Sep-11 07:14:50

I really don't know how you all cope with getting woken up through the night dd 4 months started sleeping through at 8 weeks don't know what I'd do without my sleep.

lilham Tue 20-Sep-11 07:35:16

Gourd, will never be able to tell if my DD is feeding a short amount of time. She's doing 2-5min per feed since around 5mo with no solids. She isn't really interested in solids but we've been going for just over a week. Hopefully it'll improve.

BertieBotts Sat 24-Sep-11 11:44:51

I co-slept until he was 2.4. I barely really woke up when he did. I think I would have gone mad had I been trying to resettle him in a cot or something! Just decided it was better to minimise disruption than try to force him to sleep through - it's just a different approach is all smile

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