Weaning means switching from breast milk to solid food. It takes place in stages so that a combination of breast milk and complementary food is fed first. Only when the baby gets all the nutrients from the alternative food source is it considered weaned.
Weaning is the process of converting an infant from breast milk to external food sources.
Weaning is the process of converting an infant from breast milk to external food sources. The period of weaning is not specifically defined. Some mothers choose a time for it themselves, others let their baby decide.
If the mother takes the initiative to wean, the process can take some patience. It can be over after a few weeks, but also after a few months.
Weaning is a time to get used to. Many mothers fear that the intimate togetherness that breastfeeding has built between them and their baby may be over. However, this is not the case if they are otherwise able to provide loving care to the baby.
The national breastfeeding commission, located in the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, generally recommends a minimum breastfeeding period of six months. This means that the baby should only be breastfed for the first twenty-six weeks of its life - unless certain metabolic disorders speak against it.
Breastfeeding is an important health protection factor, strengthens the child's immune system and prevents obesity. However, every mother can best judge for herself whether she does not want to wean her child earlier than after the recommended six months or whether she has the feeling that her child needs so-called complementary food earlier. In these cases it is advisable to consult a pediatrician and / or a lactation consultant.
Breastfeeding experts believe that it is best not to stop breastfeeding suddenly, but gradually switch to the external source of nutrition. It has proven difficult to breastfeed the first part and feed the second of each meal. This quickly turns into hectic and stressful situations for mother and child. On the other hand, it seems beneficial to breastfeed in the morning and in the evening while the other meals are given from the bottle. The change is easiest if the baby has already become bored with breastfeeding.
If this is not the case, the child's resistance is significantly higher. For this it is helpful if the parents realize that for their baby food is not just about eating, but above all about happiness and contentment. This enables you to better understand any resistance.
Seasoned mothers swear by telling their baby that this will be one of the last times shortly before they start weaning while breastfeeding. Even if many think that a child is still far too young to understand the meaning of the words, this method seems to work.
It can also be helpful to only offer the breast to the child when it expressly requests it. On the other hand, if the baby is distracted, distracted, or bored when it is put on, this could be a signal to start weaning. The next feeding is skipped to see how the baby reacts.
Instead of the breast, the baby is offered a bottle of milk - either expressed breast milk or mixed baby milk. If the child accepts the bottle-feeding, the number of bottle-feeding meals is increased and the number of meals from the breast is reduced. The mother's milk production then decreases independently to the extent that it is no longer needed.
If the baby is older than six months at the time of weaning, the bottle meals can be supplemented with a healthy snack. If it is younger, it may not be ready for solid snacks in the form of rusks or a piece of apple. Some unsweetened tea or juice can be offered here.
The process of weaning is easier if the breastfeeding time is shortened initially. That is, if the baby drinks normally for five minutes, that time will be reduced to three minutes. It can also be helpful to delay each breastfeeding meal. Instead of evening breastfeeding, for example, breastfeeding takes place shortly before going to bed.
Sometimes it happens that mothers heed all tips on weaning and still have the feeling that they are not making any progress. It may be that you have simply chosen the wrong time and an attempt is successful a few weeks later. In addition, it should be excluded that the child is sick. When they are not doing well, many babies want to be fed.
Changes in life situation, such as separation from the child's father, moving house and the like, can have a fundamental influence on weaning and make it much more difficult. Here it can also be helpful to try again after a few weeks in which the routine has returned and until then simply continue to breastfeed.
Another method to avoid problems with weaning is the so-called baby-led weaning (BWL) - weaning, in which the baby sets the pace. Here, porridge and learning spoons - the conventional components of the gradual conversion from breast milk to solid food - are dispensed with. Instead, a selection of finger foods is left to the child to feed themselves, with the imitation effect of the parents or big siblings at the table. The ability to sit upright must be available for business studies.