The tricky weaning period
When a mum decides to start weaning her baby, the doctor or pharmacist are on hand to provide advice on the best infant formula to meet the baby’s needs.
Weaning is an important transitional phase for both mother and baby, which is why it is important to take things slowly and gradually.
It is not always the easiest of periods, which is entirely normal and nothing to worry about. It’s important to continue to behave in your usual way with your baby: little kisses on the forehead, gentle words and cuddles, etc.
Allow 2 to 3 weeks to wean your baby. It is important to bear this in mind if mum is weaning her baby so she can go back to work.
From a practical point of view, it is preferable to start by replacing the least “productive” feed of the day, generally the one at the end of the afternoon, with a bottle of infant formula. It is recommended to wait 4 or 5 days before replacing a second feed by a second bottle, and so on.
Below is a weaning table for a mum who breastfeeds her baby 5 times a day at relatively regular times: 9 a.m., midday, 3 p.m., 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.
If baby pushes away the bottle, do not insist and try again later.
If baby skips a bottle, he will eat when he is hungry. You should trust him.
When weaning, the frequency, colour and hardness of your baby’s stools may change, which is absolutely normal. It does not mean that your baby is constipated. It takes around 8 to 10 days for your baby’s sensitive body to get used to a change of diet.
This gradual transition is just as important for mum as it is for her baby. During weaning, her body will gradually reduce the amount of milk it produces, but this adaptation can take several days, during which time her breasts will feel hard and sore.
The advantage of a transitional period is that it allows the body to adjust gradually. To relieve painful breasts, it can be useful to massage the breasts and area around the nipples using circular movements.
Weaning is the ideal time for dads to discover how enjoyable it is to feed and bond with baby.
It is simpler if mum does not get involved in these shared moments. Once again, it’s important to trust both dad and baby.
When weaning, breastfeeding mums start to prepare bottles. Below are the four steps to follow to prepare your baby’s bottle:
This dose calculation table provides a guide of average daily amounts of formula. Since every baby is different, the amounts may vary from one baby to another. Follow your doctor’s advice to adjust the doses to your child’s needs.