What Is the Right Age to Stop Breastfeeding?

What Is the Right Age to Stop Breastfeeding

You may have read many posts online claiming that babies don’t need water until they are 6 months old. It’s true because breastfeeding is enough to hydrate your child! There might be some elderly people in the family reminding you that the child is thirsty.

Some old people might constantly nag to soothe his thirst. Should you listen to their advice? How long you should breastfeed the child? What breastfeeding myths you shouldn’t believe? Continue reading to reveal important facts!

When You Should Breastfeed With Water?

Your child does not need additional water if you breastfeed him regularly! Babies get the required supply of water from breast milk or formula milk. You should add water to his diet after 6 months of age.

WHO recommends feeding complimentary food to 6 months old babies. It’s the right time to add water to the baby’s diet. Do not force him to drink water. The baby might spit it out! His stomach is still quite small and some babies still like to rely on breastfeeding. Be patient with your child and don’t force him for consuming anything!

What Mistakes You Must Avoid While Breastfeeding?

Feeding complimentary meals to 1-5 months old baby

Your child cannot digest complimentary meals properly if he is 1-5 months old. Feed only breast milk to avoid health issues. Do not follow the wrong advice shared by elders if you want to keep your child healthy!

Feeding forcefully

You should feed your child on demand. Do not force him to consume milk or complimentary food if his tummy is full. Wait until your child demands the meal and then soothe his cravings.

Choosing any cheap baby formula

Money should not be your priority when it comes to the child’s health. Choose only a top-rated baby formula. Check the nutrients and make sure it has the lowest lactose content.

Feeding only baby formula and complimentary meals to the baby

Babies can consume formula milk and complementary foods once they are 6 months old. It does not mean you should stop breastfeeding. Breast milk should be an important part of the child’s diet until he is ready to consume solid foods.

You can ensure the proper development of your child if you avoid the above-listed mistakes.

What Are Common Breastfeeding Myths?

You shouldn’t believe the following breastfeeding myths:

Mothers with small breasts can’t produce enough milk to feed the child!

It is a popular misunderstanding. Do not believe in such things! Many women with large breast size can’t satisfy the food needs of their babies. However, several women with small breasts produce more than enough milk to soothe the child’s hunger cravings.

You shouldn’t feed colostrums to your baby

Colostrums are quite nutritious for babies and provide top-quality proteins for the child’s growth. You must feed it to the child for his rapid growth and don’t believe in myths related to colostrums.  

Breast milk is thin and lacking nutrients

Breast milk is always the best food for babies up to 6 months old. Its nutritious value is always high, whether it’s thin or too thick.

Feed formula milk because you can’t produce enough for breastfeeding

It’s another myth. Look for the signs of malnutrition and then decide to feed formula milk. Don’t just believe what nagging elders claim to know!

Do not breastfeed after taking medicine

Consult with your doctor and reveal your condition. Most medicines do not affect your baby’s diet. So, follow what the doctor says!

Don’t breastfeed the child when you are angry

Milk’s quality does not depend on the mother’s emotions. So, your anger won’t make milk poisonous for the child!

How Long You Should Breastfeed Your Baby?

Your child should only consume breast milk for the first six months of his life. Breastfeeding will be a part of his daily diet until he is 2 years old. You should wean the child once he is 8 months to 1-year old. It is the right time to make extra foods an important part of your child’s diet.

Do not make sudden changes in your child’s diet. Reduce breastfeeding frequency gradually. Add complimentary food first and then hard foods when the child can chew properly. Working mothers often prefer feeding formula milk to the child. It is a healthy alternative, but you should not feed it to the baby before 6 months age!

How to Feed Complimentary Food to Breastfeeding Babies?

You already know how old your child should be to consume complimentary food. Some mothers stop breastfeeding when the baby is 6 months old. That’s not good! It can severely affect the child’s gestational health.

You should gradually change your baby’s diet. Continue breastfeeding him until he is 1-year old. Add complimentary meals to the baby’s diet after 6 months of his birth. Feed cereal or diluted iron-rich rice in small quantities. Follow the below-given steps to change your baby’s diet after 6 months:

  • Feed him cereal or vegetable smoothies in small quantities
  • Reduce breastfeeding frequency gradually
  • Feed him water in small quantities
  • Observe changes in the baby’s urination patterns and stool colors
  • Consult with a doctor if the child experiences health issues after you change his diet.  

Some babies may take time to adapt to the new taste of new food. It’s an important change in diet, but it should be subtle. Your baby will soon gain the strength to digest solids. Do not get impatient and help your baby in learning how to eat properly. It will improve his health and help him in growing stronger.

When You Should Add Formula Milk To Your Breastfeeding Baby’s Daily Diet?

Some parents believe they can feed baby formula to a newborn child. Several brands produce formula milk for a newborn child. That doesn’t mean you should stop breastfeeding your baby. Do not change the baby’s diet before six months. Feed formula milk to a newborn baby only if you can breastfeed him!

Start feeding complimentary meals once your child is 6 months old. A 6-month old baby is old enough to digest water, cereal, and external milk. Follow the below-given tips to add formula milk to your baby’s diet.

Feed formula milk after feeding breast milk for a while: Your baby may refuse to consume formula milk. He may not like the taste and spit it out. You should breastfeed him first and then put the formula milk bottle in his mouth. That’s how you can trick your child to consume formula milk.

Feed formula milk and breast milk alternatively: Once your baby has started consuming formula milk, you should not stop breastfeeding completely. Feed him formula milk just a few times. Breastfeed him the rest of the times because it will keep his digestive system healthy.

What You Must Avoid When Breastfeeding Your Baby?

Elderly women love to share some parenting tips with new mothers. They often offer wrong suggestions that can affect a baby’s health. Avoid the following breastfeeding suggestions if you want to keep your child healthy:

Do not feed water to a 4-month old child

Some people believe a 4-month old child is old enough to digest complimentary meals and water. That’s just a myth and you should avoid such suggestions. A 4-month old baby can suffer from kidney issues if parents feed him water!

Do not breastfeed deforms the mother’s shape

Breastfeeding is not responsible for sagging breasts. It only increases breast size. Regular workout will keep you fit if you want to gain that charming shape again!

Do not feed the child right before he sleeps

You should not let the child sleep immediately after breastfeeding. Hold him straight and pat him so that he can release gases out. Let him play for a while and then let him fall asleep. Thus, the baby won’t experience oral health issues.

Do not stop breastfeeding after 6 months

Some people believe breast milk is less nutritious after 6 months of the child’s birth. That’s not true. It is just a myth and you should not believe it. Breast milk always provides nutrients to nourish the child.

Do Breastfeeding Babies Have A Higher IQ Than Other Kids?

The UN claims that nearly 386,000 babies are born every day. Most mothers feed only breast milk to the child until he is 6 months old. You also know that some children are much smarter than others.

The number of ordinary people is still much higher than super-intelligent individuals. Breastfeeding is quite important for the complete development of the child. However, it does not promise a high IQ!

Conclusion

You can breastfeed your child until he is 2 years old. Babies learn how to eat solid food once they are 2-3 years old. It is the right time for weaning. We have shared many important details about breastfeeding and other feeding methods.

Follow tips and guidelines presented in this post to provide the child with a perfect diet. Do not forget breastfeeding myths because you might hurt your child if you believe in those myths!


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