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The weaning window of opportunity

(34 Posts)
hunkermunker Sat 17-Feb-07 12:04:29

Can you do me a favour, please? If any HV spouts this bollocks at you, can you punch her?

Thanks.

beansprout Sat 17-Feb-07 12:05:38

Will do, no problem

Saggarmakersbottomknocker Sat 17-Feb-07 12:08:32

lol hunker.

Although I do think I missed this <maybe fictitous> window of opportunity with dd.

I need convincing.

lunavix Sat 17-Feb-07 12:10:21

I was actually going to post about this...

when at clinic getting dd weighed (for my benefit not theirs) I was told I was 'depriving her of a taste for foods by waiting until 6 months to wean as the window of opportunity for first tastes (that is a quote) closes at 6 months.'

Apparently breastfeeding in general and weaning after 6 months is solely aimed at the third world.

Uh, do a lot of mothers in the third world read our English pamphlets then??

hunkermunker Sat 17-Feb-07 12:39:22

OK, actually, if people are told this sort of guff, can they please complain? Punching probably best left out of the equation, however tempting.

WARNING ponce alert...

So many women are getting SUCH bollocks advice that I think people ought to complain when they hear this sort of shit being spouted. Kinda in a "you have a duty" sort of way.

(I did warn you!)

DizzyBint Sat 17-Feb-07 12:45:01

trouble is, those of us who would see fit to complain are probably not the ones going to the clinic each week for this duff 'advice.' perhaps we ought to start mystery shopping the HVs.

Tatties Sat 17-Feb-07 12:46:26

It is a load of rubbish isn't it? Unfortunately at the time I didn't know any better and believed what I was told...

And why do they use such bloody emotive language like depriving your child of this, that and the other fgs? You can't not react to that, can you?

beansprout Sat 17-Feb-07 12:48:17

Good point Dizzy. I'd been hanging around MN long enough to have come to a clear view on weaning by the time came. I shudder to think how things would be if I were only listening to some of these HVs. Fruit Shoots at 16 weeks I suspect!

DizzyBint Sat 17-Feb-07 12:49:03

they are getting rid of them anyway aren't they?

hunkermunker Sat 17-Feb-07 12:49:43

Yes, "depriving" - wtf?!

Aw, poor ickle baby deprived of rice and carrot.

beansprout Sat 17-Feb-07 12:50:48

Getting rid of HVs?

DizzyBint Sat 17-Feb-07 12:52:22

yes, re structuring the role i think. no one else heard this?

tiktok Sat 17-Feb-07 13:31:26

This window of opportunity rubbish is ridiculously difficult to get rid of. Some three years ago, all HVs and communith healthcare professionals were sent copies of the Infant Feeding Recommendations, in place since May 2003 (it took a whole year before they got this material into their hands, though it had been on the web and published in journals, of course).

This four page document is on the web, at the DoH site, and I am quoting from page 3, paragraph 9, where the question is asked 'is waiting to introduce solids until six months likely to produce a 'fussy eater'?

The answer is (paragraph 9.1): 'No. There is no evidence to support the idea that starting solids at 6 months is more likely to be associated with the baby being a fussy eater. Indeed a randomised trial comparing breastfed babies started on solids at either four months or six months in Honduras found no difference in appetite or food acceptance as reported by the mothers.'

The ref is given at J.Nutr Nov 125(11):2787-92 (1995).
You can find the IFR at this part of the DoH website .

Interesting it was a randomised trial - these are better in terms of good evidence that retrospective trials which ask mothers what they did. The study must have assigned babies to one or other group and then followed up.

There are other similar papers if you look for them.

No HV has any excuse for peddling the myth any more....might be an idea, if someone does find their HV says this, to take a print out of the IFR and show it to them, and ask why they are saying something different.

tiktok Sat 17-Feb-07 13:32:54

good evidence that retrospective trials = good evidence than retrospective trials

hunkermunker Sat 17-Feb-07 13:43:50

(Are you in favour of punching, Tiktok?)

tiktok Sat 17-Feb-07 14:38:49

No! I just hit them round the head metaphorically with a bunch of research and stab them metaphorically with some razor-like questions

AitchTwoOh Sat 17-Feb-07 15:51:54

tiktok, have you seen any research about exclusive breastfeeding between 6 and 12 months causing growth dips? there's a WHO leaflet that mentions a canadian study of 36 children. not a huge sample, but still...
here

TravellingontheClaphamOmnibus Sat 17-Feb-07 16:04:06

Oooh!

I got told this yesterday...along with the following gems:

"there is no nutritional value in breastfeeding after 6 months, your baby will get iron deficiency"

"you can wean your baby any time after 17 weeks if you think he is ready"

"your baby needs more than just fruit and veg, use things like rusks (but make sure you use the reduced sugar version) oven chips and rice cakes"

"oh, we have a video to watch made by SMA. Of course we don't recommend SMA more than anything else but it's the only resource we could find."

The workshop was about as helpful as a chocolate teapot.

TravellingontheClaphamOmnibus Sat 17-Feb-07 16:05:23

I should have added I was at a weaning workshop led by our health visitor.

Luckily my friends and I took it with a pinch of salt and have decided not to wean our babies at 17 weeks...

lulumama Sat 17-Feb-07 16:08:11

wow! You all need my HV i;ve seen her confiscate rusks ! "well, it;s the same as a chocolate biscuit!, you need to give babies real food !"

AitchTwoOh Sat 17-Feb-07 16:08:30

you should complain, if you have the energy for it...

TravellingontheClaphamOmnibus Sat 17-Feb-07 16:14:59

I don't really have the energy to complain. I shall keep my head down and avoid the clinic and continue to breastfeed.

AitchTwoOh Sat 17-Feb-07 16:29:07

you should deffo say something to the gp when you are next there, though...

taylormama Sat 17-Feb-07 16:33:40

my HV spouted such tosh about weaning at our mum and baby group i actually had a stand up row with her in front of 20 other mums and babies - also this is the same HV who recommended i give my DS brown sugar and water for his constipation!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

tiktok Sat 17-Feb-07 16:37:50

The trouble is, that they can justify themselves because they don't really understand the impact of what they are saying or the reasons behind the guidance ie

* "there is no nutritional value in breastfeeding after 6 months, your baby will get iron deficiency" - breastfeeding alone with no other foods will start to impact on iron levels after a time, it is true, but this process does not suddenly begin on a certain date

* "you can wean your baby any time after 17 weeks if you think he is ready" - not exactly. If a mother is determined to give solids before the research shows is healthy, then she has to be advised that she should not do it until 17 weeks

"your baby needs more than just fruit and veg, use things like rusks (but make sure you use the reduced sugar version) oven chips and rice cakes" Well......if we are at a stage when the baby is getting calories from solids, then yes, he's gonna need more than fruit and veg. Not sure about oven chips...

"oh, we have a video to watch made by SMA. Of course we don't recommend SMA more than anything else but it's the only resource we could find."
This may be literally true - they may not be able to find anything else without actually paying for it. They should not be showing it, of course.

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