how can I keep my baby interested in breastfeeding?

Nicole - posted on 06/26/2009 ( 3 moms have responded )




I've been having a really hard time lately keeping my 6 month old interested in breastfeeding. He'll take a few sucks, then want to look around and play and then go back for a few more sucks and this just goes on and on the whole time. He used to nurse for a good steady 10 minutes, now I'm lucky if he'll stay latched on for 2 minutes at a time! Even in a dark quiet room with no distractions he still does it. Is that what they do at this age? How can I keep him interested?


Kate - posted on 06/26/2009




My DD was like that too. They go through phases where they are really more interested in playing than nursing. They also go through a change (usually closer to 9 - 12 months but all babies are different) where they want to have more control over the nursing. I really thought my DD was about to wean herself from 10 months - just past her birthday. But then suddenly she picked up again. She just did not want to nurse laying down, in her room, when I decided to. She wanted to choose the time, place, and position she was in. When I allowed her to, she started to nurse a lot more. She likes to lay next to me now, or sit up next to me, or climb across me, etc.

I would say from 6 - 12 months she probably only nursed 2 - 5 min. at a time and was easily distracted, like your son, but now when she decides she wants milk she will sit still for 10 - 15 min. (usually). But, distraction does happen other times! She is 17 mo. btw. So, if you don't mind dealing with this phase and you are motivated to keep breastfeeding, know that it WILL change, but it may take time.


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Nicole - posted on 06/26/2009




He nurses 5 times a day, every 3 hours. He does eat solids, but I nurse him before he eats the solids. And sometimes after, if he still seems hungry. I figure he's gotten more efficient at getting the milk out. I'll try some different positions and see if I can find maybe a big bead necklace or something. Thanks guys!

Minnie - posted on 06/26/2009




Snacking is normal, and sometimes it's necessary. Continue what you're doing, by minimizing distractions. Have you tried lying down in bed in the dark room? Also try a long sturdy necklace that he can fiddle with and focus on while nursing.

Offer the breast as often as you can, and don't replace feedings with solids. He'll nurse as he needs to. Babies do become more efficient at nursing, and in those measly two minutes he's at your breast he's probably getting more milk than you think.

As long as you're not supplementing with formula and not filling him up on solids so that he's not hungry for your milk, his urine isn't dark or smelly, and he's not losing weight he's getting enough milk.

My own eight month old is a snacker, and gets nothing but my milk, no solids. She just nurses very frequently. Just like yours, a few sucks, play play, few more sucks.

Try using a sling or a mei tai, stick him in it, he'll love looking around, it may calm him, and he can have frequent and easy access to your breast.

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