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Breast-Feeding: When Baby Doesn't Want to Stop

Topic Overview

Sometimes a mother wants to stop breast-feeding, but her baby shows signs of wanting to continue. If possible, continue breast-feeding a while longer. If this is not possible, the following suggestions may help you:

  • Offer breast milk pumped from your breast, formula, or cow's milk (if your baby is more than 12 months old) in a cup or bottle before you breast-feed or between breast-feedings. Slowly increase the amount in the cup or bottle. If possible, have someone else feed your baby with a bottle or cup.
  • If your baby spits out the bottle nipple when first starting to bottle-feed, keep trying. Experiment with different nipple types. It often takes time for a breast-fed baby to get used to an artificial nipple. Or it may be time to use a cup.
  • If your baby suddenly refuses to nurse when you are trying to wean gradually, pump your breasts for comfort. Pump less milk from your breasts each day.
  • If your weaned baby wants to nurse again, try giving your baby extra hugs and attention instead of going back to the old way of feeding.

Related Information

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics
Specialist Medical Reviewer Thomas Emmett Francoeur, MD, MDCM, CSPQ, FRCPC - Pediatrics
Last Revised November 4, 2011

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