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View Full Version : How long is it normal to nurse?



Aowyn
October 14th, 2004, 10:23 AM
I was just wondering cause it seems like alot of people think i shouldn't be nursing anymore, my boy is about 7 mo and doesnt want to stop even though he eats some baby food. :huh:

Gwenhwyfar
October 14th, 2004, 10:37 AM
I was just wondering cause it seems like alot of people think i shouldn't be nursing anymore, my boy is about 7 mo and doesnt want to stop even though he eats some baby food. :huh:


I would say just keep going, who cares what others think. Maybe till a year or so? I know alot of people will say 3 years but I dont agree with that, in my opinion if your kid is old enough to say "I want that one mommy" while pointing at your left breast when your offering the right, like I saw in McDonalds the other day, is wierd. I bet its healthy but it weirds me out, just seems really odd..anyways back to my point, who cares what others think, do whatever feels right for you and your son.:)

Shanti
October 14th, 2004, 10:39 AM
Nurse as long as you and your child want to. Their is no set time!
I nursed my one son for 2 yrs, another till 3 months, my daughter one year.
Stop when you both are ready!!!

misschief
October 14th, 2004, 10:40 AM
i've always heard til they have enough teeth to really hurt you :lol:. but i don't know really.

DebLipp
October 14th, 2004, 11:04 AM
I nursed for 19 months. The average in the US is six months. The massive health benefits are all best acheived by going as close to 2 years as you can.

In other cultures, they go 3 years or later. There is an aside in the book Black Elk Speaks where Black Elk says that by the time he was six years old, he hardly ever ran back to his mother to nurse!

Ravens_Tears
October 14th, 2004, 11:28 AM
I nursed both my children until were three years. Both are asthmatic and it definately was a benefit to them. I wasn't working at the time though either, so I had the time to dedicate. I always say that nursing is a "If it feels right, do it" thing. As long a time or short a time as you are comfortable and that baby is happy with. You can always pump milk too if you still want them to have breast milk for a time after they are "weaned". A bit of a hassle but it can be done.

Ravens_Tears
October 14th, 2004, 11:33 AM
i've always heard til they have enough teeth to really hurt you :lol:. but i don't know really.

As far as teeth go. Usually they don't bite unless they're teething and rarely in those circumstances anyway. At least mine didn't. If a baby does tend to be a biter though I would recommend weaning at that point. One of my friends has a little one who cut her first tooth less than 4 days after she was born. Brave women she was to nurse! But that's very rare too!

MockingbirdOxygen
October 14th, 2004, 12:07 PM
I agree with everyone who says, "who cares what everyone else thinks, do what's best for you and your baby!" Just for stats: I nursed my first one until he was about 10 months, and he pretty much weaned himself, never bit; my second one until he was 2 years, and he still wasn't really wanting to give it up, so it took awhile..he got me with his teeth when he first started getting them, but he got them late, so he was old enough to get the idea that bite=mommy takes warm booby away, so it only happened a couple of times; my 3rd and last one, I wasn't really ready to wean, at almost one year, but he started losing interest, and I figured I'd better go with it, because if I waited, I thought I he might get more reattached. And he got teeth early, at about 4 months...but he wasn't too bad, he got a couple of "nips" in before he got the idea.. :bigblue: excuse the pun...
So just by looking at me, one person who breastfed all 3 kids, you can tell how it varies depending on the individual, the situation, and the child. And although I'm big on the breastfeeding thing, I wouldn't advise anyone to do it if they weren't comfortable with it themselves, because you have to do what's right in your situation. Unfortunately, sometimes well-meaning relatives can give you a hard time, especially those who have never breast fed, (or maybe they're holding a grudge because they were never breast fed :bigblue: ) I know my ex in-laws thought I was off my rocker, but then again, that was pretty much established before the breast feeding thing became an issue. By the way, if and when you do decide to wean, don't do it too abruptly, if possible. It should be gradually tapered off to avoid hurting your breasts (engorgement! painful! You might already know this!) and to make it easier for the child to "let go" without missing it. If you are lucky, maybe the child will lose interest on his own around the time you are ready to wean. Good Luck! :smile:

Amethyst Rose
October 14th, 2004, 12:28 PM
The WHO (world health organization) suggest breastfeeding for at least 1 year. The AAP (american association of pediatricians ?) suggest breastfeeding for at least 2 years.

My son just turned 1 on Saturday, and we completely weaned 2 days ago. He was down to 1 feeding a day on his own, and I just felt done. I was completely at peace with stopping, so I knew it was time.

Aowyn
October 14th, 2004, 12:52 PM
thank you all so much, most of the people hounding me are relatives that didn't think it was a good idea to nurse in the first place, i do get nipped now and then when hes done eating usually. He goofs around and then nips to get a reaction. I feel alot better knowing that I am not the only person who hass gotten this type of treatment, thank you all for your input!!! I thiink I am shooting for a year...I figure by then the nipping will if he is still doing it just be too much.

Autumn
October 14th, 2004, 12:52 PM
3-4 Years is the international average and people who tell you you should stop nursing prior to one year are talking through their hats. (in normal circumstanses)

Edited to add: When he bites don't react drastically but do calmly set him on the floor and walk away, saying "you bit Mommie and hurt her, maybe we need to wait a while before we nurse again" He will note that biting you ends the session and he is now sitting all alone on the floor. repeat the lesson often enough, and evry single time you get bit and it will stop.

FaerieGothMommy
October 14th, 2004, 01:00 PM
Carry on nursing then :) who says you should stop? and why on earth do ppl think you should stop after 7 months? Then again, i got the same reactions. Everyone kept saying to me "isnt it about time you stopped breastfeeding" i breastfed my daughter for 9 1/2 months and am currently nursing my 3 month old son, i wanted to nurse my daughter longer, but after 9 1/2 months, she became dis-interested, and would just suckle for a few mins before bed. Keep going :) ignore the others.

FaerieGothMommy
October 14th, 2004, 01:03 PM
As far as teeth go. Usually they don't bite unless they're teething and rarely in those circumstances anyway. At least mine didn't. If a baby does tend to be a biter though I would recommend weaning at that point. One of my friends has a little one who cut her first tooth less than 4 days after she was born. Brave women she was to nurse! But that's very rare too!

yep, thats another thing, although my daughter cut her first tooth at 7 months she started to bite A LOT at 9 months, so i guess i was lucky she became disinterested soon after

Llewyth
October 14th, 2004, 09:26 PM
Ugh! Why is it, that when you become a parent, everyone feels free to give you a bunch un unsollicited advice? Nurse as long as you want! I nursed Michel till he was 23 months and, though I went back to work, plan on nursing my almost one year old daughter until about the same age. Next time someone bugs you, threaten to squirt them! :lol:

Ceres
October 15th, 2004, 11:04 AM
speaking of teeth....
by comparing average tooth development in different mammals with the amount of time they are fed by their mothers, and applying the same formula to human development, humans should have their mothers milk till the age of six....not that i nursed that long ;) my three kids were breastfed a total of 85 monthes - u do the math lol
according to a study done of japanese mothers, in order to get some protection from postmenopausal breast cancer by breastfeeding, the mother needs to do it for a total between all children of at least 79 monthes. i just made it in under the line ;)

~*Ginger*~
October 15th, 2004, 11:56 AM
My oldest was 32 months old when she weaned herself.
The other was 28 months when she weaned herself.

Do what you think is best for you and your child.
And believe me, letting them wean themself is a whole lot more comfortable than trying to push them to wean.
In all areas but especially the engorgenment area.

Ceres
October 15th, 2004, 01:47 PM
breastfeeding creates a unique relationship between mother and child. there is no normal weaning time because this isnt about science - its about your nursing relationship to your child and only u and the child can determine whats right within the relationship.

MorningDove030202
October 15th, 2004, 01:50 PM
I nursed for 14 months, I went from boob to sippy cup with no bottle at all! Nurse for as long as you both enjoy it and it's not driving you crazy or hurting!

Dove

FlyingBear
October 15th, 2004, 03:15 PM
Sophia is nine months old now and she still nurses like a champ. Absolutely stick with it! Check out this board I go to, I've gotten lots of support and good advice there.

http://www.breastfeeding.com/

There's a community board you can post at.

Keep up the good work, Mom! It's worth it!


:tub:

Ceres
October 15th, 2004, 04:13 PM
thats good advice flyingbear - support is important, especially if everyone around u thinks the baby should be weaned. la leche league might be a good place for you to go, too as it it certainly is for all nursing mothers and expectant mothers as well.
www.lalecheleague.org

morrigen
October 15th, 2004, 05:11 PM
Stop when you and your child feels the time is right.

Tell everyone else to mind their own business,and be happy because you're doing what's best for you and your child. :)

lythadancer
October 15th, 2004, 05:13 PM
I was just wondering cause it seems like alot of people think i shouldn't be nursing anymore, my boy is about 7 mo and doesnt want to stop even though he eats some baby food. :huh:

I nursed my children for 17 mo. I have an amazing bond with my children and wouldn't change it for anything!

soilsigh aingeal
October 15th, 2004, 06:57 PM
I was just wondering cause it seems like alot of people think i shouldn't be nursing anymore, my boy is about 7 mo and doesnt want to stop even though he eats some baby food. :huh:as long as you and your baby want to it's perfectly normal.

Smiley Girl
October 15th, 2004, 09:29 PM
I agree. Take your child off when you think they are ready, or when you think it will be good for them. NO ONE knows your children but you.

botea
October 18th, 2004, 11:12 PM
My youngest weaned herself just after her second birthday... do what feels right for you and your family :)

LadyTrinity
October 19th, 2004, 12:20 AM
I think up to 12 months is good cause by then ur child is old enough to crawl around or maybe even walk. They should be independent and hold their own bottle. Not feed from a boob.
Personally it grosses me out to see mothers who still do it when their child is older than 4 :eyebrow:

mara
October 19th, 2004, 01:12 PM
most of my children stopped nursing around the 9 month mark, but my oldest daughter(my second child) nursed until she was something like 28 months..but I think nursing should end when you're both ready, as others have said. I don't agree with nursing older children( when it gets past 3) though..I don't think it's healthy.

BethieRose
October 19th, 2004, 05:47 PM
The WHO (world health organization) suggest breastfeeding for at least 1 year. The AAP (american association of pediatricians ?) suggest breastfeeding for at least 2 years.


I believe it's the opposite. The WHO recommends at least two years, and then on until mom and child are ready to stop. The AAP recommends at least one year, and then on until mom and child are ready to stop. Neither puts a cap on the end time beyond two and one years, respectively. :)

Amethyst Rose
October 19th, 2004, 06:04 PM
I believe it's the opposite. The WHO recommends at least two years, and then on until mom and child are ready to stop. The AAP recommends at least one year, and then on until mom and child are ready to stop. Neither puts a cap on the end time beyond two and one years, respectively. :)

Ah, you're right... I did the research and came up with this:


As a global public health recommendation, infants should be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of life to achieve optimal growth, development and health. Thereafter, to meet their evolving nutritional requirements, infants should receive nutritionally adequate and safe complementary foods while breastfeeding continues for up to two years of age or beyond.

and


Exclusive breastfeeding is ideal nutrition and sufficient to support optimal growth and development for approximately the first 6 months after birth. Infants weaned before 12 months of age should not receive cow's milk feedings but should receive iron-fortified infant formula. Gradual introduction of iron-enriched solid foods in the second half of the first year should complement the breast milk diet. It is recommended that breastfeeding continue for at least 12 months, and thereafter for as long as mutually desired.

However, I never suggested that either put a cap on how long to nurse, that's why I said at least one or two years.

Aowyn
October 19th, 2004, 07:16 PM
WOW thanks for all th information everyone! ;)

BethieRose
October 19th, 2004, 10:04 PM
However, I never suggested that either put a cap on how long to nurse, that's why I said at least one or two years.

I'm sorry, Amethyst Rose, I never meant to imply you did. I guess I was just trying to make it clear, in answer to the OP, that neither organization limits the time it is "right" to breastfeed. I just wanted to reassure her that by current medical recommendations, she should do what feels right for her and her child.

Thanks for providing the info straight from the source! That's very helpful! :)