The benefits of breast feeding are much orchestrated nowadays both by the government as well as the NGO’s with an interest to promote breast feeding for a longer period. Still there is a rush to know about weaning baby at the earliest possible time frame. The reasons could be many such as a working mother, maintaining an adorable figure for those who are in the entertainment industry or for a simple reason where in a woman who just wants to keep her figure as it is.
Though there are benefits to breast feeding for a longer period, eventually there should be a time to start weaning the baby from that. Most medical experts are of the opinion that it is ideal to start the weaning process, mind you, gradually from the first birthday. But when an earlier time frame is warranted it can be done from the sixth month but should be avoided before then. That does not mean that feeding should stop from the start of the seventh month. The process should start with supplementing the breast feeding with fruits that will be easy to digest for the baby. When the baby is fed with some solid foods there is a tendency for less affinity for breast milk and the process of weaning will be easier in this way.
The other alternative is, in cases like a working mother, the child can be put into some solid food, easily digestible of course, after the early morning breast feeding for the rest of the day and again breast feeding on the late evening before the baby goes to sleep. This way the process is gradual as well as healthy both for the mother and the child.
When there is an alternate source of milk, the weaning process is an easier one, even in cases where the baby is not yet ready to take the solid food. Try giving hygienic milk from another source through a feeding bottle. Some innovative mothers even try giving the breast milk through a feeding bottle to inculcate the habit of bottle feeding. Later this will be very helpful when the stage reaches where the weaning baby is inevitable. Besides this will pave room for the other family members also able to take care of the baby and gives the much required rest for the mother.
There are some signs to look for to start the weaning. When there is reluctance from the baby to suck on the breast for longer time or when the time taken to breast feeding is longer than usual are some signs to take that the baby is losing interest in breast feeding. This is an ideal time to introduce solid foods to your baby and help the weaning process along.
The best way to start weaning, tried and found very useful by the working mothers, is to skip the mid day feeding where the quantity is less and it is the most inconvenient for the mother. Supplemented with the solid foods for the day there will be less interest from the baby in breast feeding and over a period of time the weaning will be complete. However it is wise to consult with the doctor to ensure that the baby is getting sufficient quantity of food for growth which is most important thing.