The Weaning method involves gradually cutting back the number of times a mother breastfeeds the baby during a day. Slowly reducing the number of times the mother breastfeeds can help prevent breast engorgement and depression. Taking it slow also makes the transition to a bottle or cup easy. The baby is considered weaned when he stops to breastfeed and gets all his or her nutrition from other sources other than the mother’s milk.
There is no optimum time to begin with the weaning method. It must be decided by the mother and the baby when they feel it’s best to begin weaning. Many pediatricians encourage mothers to breastfeed for longer duration if both she and the baby are all right with it. Weaning is easiest when it’s the child who decides to do so. However, if it’s the mother’s decision then it will require time and patience. Going somewhere in the weekend to end the breastfeed for the toddler is not a judicious act. It’s not advisable to suddenly stop the breastfeeding because it can be traumatic for the child.
You should replace breast milk with a bottle of formula milk. If the baby is six months old, a cup or sipper can be used instead of the bottle. If the child is older than one year, then he or she won’t require replacement feed. The process of weaning is different with different people. Setting a schedule might actually help. It will help you to strategically plan the weaning. Mark a day on the calendar when you wish to begin with the weaning process. At first try for a month, if you are gradually making progress, continue. But if there are hindrances, you can change your methods.
Reducing feedings one at a time! Take the help of the father or other family members to distract the child. Whenever the child demands for breast feed, distract him or her with some fun activities. You can also limit the time of feeding. Changing bedtime routines also help in the process. Another way to make the process a success is by avoiding familiar nursing positions. This will reduce the triggering of emotional connect with a place.
All these strategies together can help you in your weaning process. If still the hindrances are great, then maybe it isn’t the right time. Everything happens at the right time. Be patient and keep on trying.