Weaning means switching from breast milk to solid food. It is gradual, so that first a combination of breast milk and complementary foods is fed. Only when the baby gets all the nutrients from the alternative food source, it is considered as wilted.

What is the weaning?

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 specific time for themselves, others let their baby decide.

If the initiative comes to weaning from the mother, the process may require a lot of patience. He may have survived after a few weeks, but only after a few months.

Weaning is a time of habituation. Many mothers fear that the intimate togetherness built up by breastfeeding between them and their baby may be over. However, this is not the case if they give the baby loving care in other ways.

Function & Task

The National Nursing Commission, located in the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, generally recommends a minimum duration of six months. This means that the baby should be breastfed for the first twenty-six weeks of his or her life - unless certain metabolic diseases do not oppose it.

Breastfeeding is considered an important health protection factor, strengthens the child's immune system and prevents overweight. However, each mother can best judge for herself whether she does not want to have her baby breastfed earlier than after the recommended half-year or if she feels that her child needs so-called complementary foods before. In these cases, it is advisable to consult a pediatrician and / or a lactation consultant.

Style experts argue that it is best not to stop breastfeeding abruptly, but gradually switch to the external food source. It has proved difficult at each meal to breastfeed the first part and feed the second. This quickly degenerates into hectic and stress for mother and child. Conveniently, however, it seems to breastfeed morning and evening, while the other meals are given out of the vial. The easiest way to change is when the baby has already become bored while nursing.

If this is not the case, the child's resistance is significantly higher. But it helps if the parents realize that eating for their baby is not just food, but above all happiness and contentment. So they can better understand possible resistances.

Experienced mothers swear to tell their baby about breastfeeding just before starting to breastfeed that this is one of the last times. Also, if many think that child is still too small to understand the meaning of the words, this method seems to work.

It can also be helpful to only offer the child the breast when it is specifically required. If, on the other hand, the baby is distracted, distracted, or bored when it is put on, this could be a signal to start weaning. The next feeding is left out to see how the baby reacts.

Instead of the breast, the baby is offered a vial of milk - either pumped breast milk or mixed baby milk. If the child accepts the bottle food, the number of bottle meals that reduces the number of meals from the breast is increased. The milk production of the mother will then be self-sufficient to the extent that it is no longer needed.

Diseases & complaints

If the baby is older than six months at the time of weaning, the bottle meals can be supplemented with a healthy snack. When it is younger, it may not be ready for a snack in the form of rusks or a piece of apple. Here you can get some unsweetened tea or juice.

The process of weaning is easier when initially breastfeeding is shortened. That is, if the baby normally drinks for five minutes, that time is reduced to three minutes. It may also be helpful to delay any nursing meals in time. Instead of an evening nursing is then, for example, breastfed shortly before going to bed.

It sometimes happens that mothers follow all the tips for weaning and still feel that they are not making any progress. It may be that they have simply chosen the wrong time and a start is successful a few weeks later. In addition, it should be ruled out that the child is ill. If they are not feeling well, many babies want to be fed.

The change in the life situation such as a separation from the father, a move and the like can have a fundamental impact on the weaning and make it much more difficult. Here, too, it may be helpful, after a few weeks in which routine has returned, to make a new attempt and just continue nursing.

Another way to avoid problems with weaning is the so-called Baby-led Weaning (BWL) - the weaning, in which the baby sets the pace. This dispenses with porridge and trays - the traditional components of gradual conversion from breast milk to solid foods. Instead, by means of a selection of finger foods, it is left to the child to feed itself, relying on the imitation effect of the parents or large siblings at the table. The ability to sit upright must be available for business administration.

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