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I am getting irritated by all the conflicting advice I am getting re weaning.

(56 Posts)
pudding25 Mon 15-Sep-08 20:02:35

My LO is 18wks old. She is 13lbs 3 oz. On 25th percentile for weight and on 91st percentile for height (although she doesnlt look tall and thin, just normal!). She does not eat that much, although her feeding has got better recently.

I have read the info that the DOH has put out. My plan was to hold off until as near to 6 mths as I can.

So today, I go to get LO weighed and measured. Every week, LO puts on 4oz. She is healthy, happy, very alert. The HV tells me that I should start to wean her as she could do with putting on 1-2 oz more per wk. She said that she had been at a lecture where they were told that all the stuff about the gut was rubbish and that late weaning was aimed at 3rd world countries.

She told me that I should start with some baby rice and give it BEFORE a milk feed.

I am not going to wean her yet as I think that the HV is talking nonsense. Even if what the DOH says is rubbish, surely you would not wean a baby at 4mths unless they were hungry? She is never that hungry. She does not cry for more food or eat tons.

Also, if the HV is worried about her weight gain, milk has much more calories than food anyway so I don't see how a spoon of baby rice will make her put on weight. Also, if I give her the food before her milk, surely it will put her off her milk???

I just had to vent as I am annoyed.

LO is BF and bottle fed. When she has her bottle, she never takes more than 140ml and that is on a good day.

I am right to ignore the HV's advice?

cmotdibbler Mon 15-Sep-08 20:06:43

You are right. The HV is a loon.

What more can I say, but please make an official complaint about her so that she stops spouting this rubbish

TheUNITUBER Mon 15-Sep-08 20:09:58

Ignore the HV.
Was the lecture sponsored by a baby food company by any chance?

zwiggy Mon 15-Sep-08 20:11:23

hvs know nothing. FACT

Trafficcone Mon 15-Sep-08 20:12:31

Like 99.9% of her colleagues, she's talking crap. HTH.

nigglewiggle Mon 15-Sep-08 20:13:27

I think it's great that you are so confident about your own maternal instincts and they sound very right to me. Don't let the HV who's just been to a new lecture put you off!

Habbibu Mon 15-Sep-08 20:13:37

God, if that were true, do you think the DoH in this country might just have mentioned it? I don't get why so many HVs are so desperate to get babies weaned early - is there some kind of points system? Ask her to give you detailed research references if she mentions it again - that should stop her in her tracks.

TheUNITUBER Mon 15-Sep-08 20:14:30

Ah now Zwiggy, my first HV was excellent.
If I asked a question, e.g. about switching to formula, she would give me the info she had and then tell me "but I was told that at a lecture being run by [name of formula company] and you should take that into account." Fab.

pudding25 Mon 15-Sep-08 20:24:57

The lecture was by a paedatrician (sp) at a well-known London Hospital. Also, my best friend (who's baby is the same age) was with me and this paedatrician just so happens to be the one who is treating her baby for bad reflux. Best friend's brother is a paedatrician in the States and he highly recommended this guy. That was the only reason that I did think there might possibly be some sort of truth in it - but even if there is - the reasons why HV wanted me to start weaning dd make no sense.

It drives me mad, Everything to do with having a baby - no-one agrees on anything!!

MrsJamin Mon 15-Sep-08 20:38:10

pudding25, you're right, your HV is not! Stick to your guns about weaning, there's no rush or advantage in weaning early. If you do think your LO is ready earlier than 6 months, the test is that if they can totally feed themselves the food, then they're ready - if they can't, they're not ready.

pudding25 Mon 15-Sep-08 20:40:29

Thanks everyone. It is just so annoying!

TheUNITUBER Mon 15-Sep-08 20:44:43

The contradictory information is infuriating. When my DD was little I used to wish there was a book about feeding, sleeping and other baby related stuff (health issues etc) that referred to actual studies instead of being based on the random whims of the author. That way at least I could have developed an informed opinion about whatever I was worried about...

pudding25 Mon 15-Sep-08 20:52:11

I just never know who to believe. I think you have to go with your own instinct but it would help if those in the know all sung from the same songsheet or whatever the expression is!

cockles Mon 15-Sep-08 20:54:29

Margot Sunderland's What Every Parent Should Know/ The Science of PArenting is quite good from that point of view unituber - based on Actual Research!
HV is talking crap here - as per.

pudding25 Mon 15-Sep-08 21:01:16

Forgot to mention - she also said that speech problems have got worse since the weaning age was raised as children - do not see how 2 mths difference in weaning can have such a drastic effect on speaking????

Habbibu Mon 15-Sep-08 21:08:15

Like to hear moondog's take on that. Anyone seen her?

TheUNITUBER Mon 15-Sep-08 21:19:30

I'll look at that one Cockles, thanks.

I am guessing that HV's comment re speech would be something to do with the fact that eating and speech use the same muscles. So my friend's child, who does not eat, has a team of speech therapists assigned to him. A 2 month delay in weaning actually causing a measurable problem does sound like baloney though. I would love to see the study underlying that statement...

It reminds me of my first trip to see the midwife. I was 16 weeks pregnant and already having terrible heartburn and she told me that I should not take Gaviscon as, in her (4 years of) experience, that would lead to my child having digestive problems. The eye-rolling began then and hasn't stopped since.

pudding25 Mon 15-Sep-08 21:20:05

Who is moondog? Os she a speech therapist?

Shannaratiger Mon 15-Sep-08 21:33:37

I've heard that the 6 mnth weaning is aimed at the third world because breast milk is obviously safer than the polluted water etc that they have to eat. If your baby is satisfied by milk keep going although their iron reserves do run out by 6 mnths.

pudding25 Mon 15-Sep-08 21:36:30

Yes, that does make sense and I can totally understand that. But why have they come up with all this research about the gut?

I am going to keep an eye on her and see how it goes. I was always prepared that she may need weaning a bit before 6mths but she has just turned 4 mths and is quite small considering she started on 50th percentile.

tiktok Mon 15-Sep-08 23:37:33

Iron reserves do not run out by 6 mths - though it's understandable this idea is around. Iron starts to deplete some time from about 6 mths, and this is partly why starting to offer a few solids round about that time is a good idea, as the baby can start getting used to other tastes and textures, so over the next few months his intake of iron will be sufficient...alongside the iron in breastmilk (or formula, if he is having formula).

pudding, ask your HV nicely for information on published research - it's only when research is actually published (after being through peer review) that we can really begin to take it seriously. Hearing a lecture is not really good enough.

If she thinks your baby needs more calories, then of course you can breastfeed her more. Weaning risks reducing her net calorie intake.

moondog Mon 15-Sep-08 23:42:03

Another fucking idiot.
Wot a surprise. <hollow laugh>

Stuff on speech problems utter drivel too. It is staggering to think people in responsible positions feel at liberty to tell lies like this to vulnerable members of society.

edam Mon 15-Sep-08 23:44:09

The six month weaning guideline is a guideline for the whole world, not just developing countries. I suspect the third world idea is a myth started by disgruntled old-fashioned HVs.

Pudding's HV may have just repeated the parts of the paediatrician's lecture that chimed with her own views, and left out those that didn't. Or perhaps the paediatrician has a bee in his bonnet - even eminent people are sometimes a little less than balanced in their views.

pudding25 Tue 16-Sep-08 08:35:51

All I can say is that I am glad I found mumsnet, otherwise, I would have no idea about all of this and would have believed the HV.

pudding25 Tue 16-Sep-08 08:52:47

tiktok if I see her again, I will ask of she has some published research on it. It is crazy. I told her that I had been reading up on weaning guidelines and told her the reasons I had read behind it and she said that it was a load of rubbish. She was very convincing and I am sure that most people would not have doubted her for a minute.

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