Child Health
Weaning

​​​What is weaning?

Weaning refers to the process of terminating an infant's breastfeeding. It is recommended to breastfeed babies for a year or longer.

When to wean a baby?
Women choose to stop breastfeeding at different times and for different reasons. Most of the time the mother chooses when to wean, but sometimes weaning occurs because the baby no longer wants to be breastfed.

How to wean?
When the mother decides to wean, she should not stop breastfeeding all at once; rather, she should try to reduce breastfeeding gradually and slowly. To do this, the mother can:
  • Drop one breastfeeding session every 2 to 5 days.
  • Shorten the duration of each breastfeeding session.
  • Increase the time between sessions. 

Some women start weaning by stopping breastfeeding during the day first. Night or bedtime sessions are the last sessions to be stopped.

Problems mothers have with weaning:
Many breast problems occur during weaning (such as: breast engorgement, blocked milk ducts, or infection), especially if the mother has stopped breastfeeding suddenly.

This is why it is recommended to wean gradually and slowly to avoid these problems. Moreover, it is normal for a woman to feel sad when weaning her baby. If you're weaning your baby, take it easy on yourself and remember that you have given your baby many benefits through breastfeeding them.

After weaning, a woman may feel that her breasts are getting smaller. She might also notice stretch marks on her breasts; but stretch marks usually disappear over time. Once you stop breastfeeding, your breasts will stop producing milk. It is normal for some milk to remain in the breasts for months or years after weaning.

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