Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Nursing Strike or Child Lead Weaning?

The latest edition of Parent Magazine came out earlier this week and they had this beautiful photo of a breastfeeding mother and her Nummie Lover. First.... let me just say it.... AWWWWWWWWWW I love that picture! It shows such a great moment between this Mummie and her Nummie Lover. Notice the Nummie Lover Holding that Nummie Maker! LOVE IT!!!! Oh and 11 months?!! That is awesome! A great run, I say!

I posted this picture on our Facebook page, to see what the reaction would be. I have to say I am not too shocked by what the over all feeling was. (see photo below)

Most of the Mummies picked up on "sagging breast tissue" and "one day she'd had enough." Although I did pick up on the humor (I did, I really did.... I pictured myself pushing my breast in Kit Kat's face and her squirming away. Kinda like "get that thing away from me!"..... I got a chuckle out of that) I was also a bit thrown off by how the article came across.

It has been researched, studied, researched and studied again and there is NO reason or proof that breastfeeding makes breast tissue saggy. Sadly, that is a top reason why some women do not breastfeed. They are afraid of what will happen to their breasts. What HAS shown to be the cause of saggy breasts is pregnancy.  The Mayo Clinic stated this in one of their articles: "Research has shown that breast-feeding doesn't negatively affect breast shape or volume. Still, sagging breasts are a valid concern. During pregnancy, the ligaments that support your breasts may stretch as your breasts get fuller and heavier. This stretching may contribute to sagging breasts after pregnancy — whether or not you breast-feed your baby. Sagging breasts may be more noticeable with each subsequent pregnancy, especially if you have large breasts" 

The other hot topic that came out of this article was whether or not the Nummie Lover was experiencing a Nursing Strike or was in fact "done" with breastfeeding. Now although there is no way of telling, now, if the baby was truly done. But typically a baby doesn't wake up one day and decide "Yeah, I think I am done with the Nummies. It is time to move on."  Some babies go through what is known as a Breastfeeding/Nursing Strike. (Oh I know....what the heck is a nursing strike?!) No, your nummie lover is not going to make cute little signs and picket outside of your breastfeeding friendly shirt, nor will they chant "no more milk!".... it is not that kind of "strike." A nursing strike is a Nummie Lover's way of saying that something is wrong, and most who go "on strike" are obviously unhappy about it. Here are some "causes" for a nursing strike (but keep in mind ALL babies are individuals..... so there maybe other reasons as to why a nursing strike has occurred.)

  • mouth pain from teething, an injury, a cold sore, or a fungus infection, such as thrush,
  • an ear infection, which may cause pressure or pain while nursing,
  • pain while being held in the nursing position, perhaps due to an immunization or an injury,
  • a cold or stuffy nose that makes breathing difficult while nursing,
  • too many bottles, overuse of a pacifier, or frequent thumb sucking, which >may lead to a reduced milk supply,
  • regular distractions and interruptions while nursing,
  • an unusually long separation from mother.
  • a strong reaction to a baby's bite,
  • a major change in routine, such as moving or traveling,
  • limiting and/or rigidly scheduling feedings,
  • talking in a loud voice or arguing with other family members while nursing,
  • over-stimulation, stress, or tension from an overly full schedule or an upset in the home,
  • repeatedly putting off the baby when she wants to nurse or letting her cry.

 If you find yourself (and your Nummie Lover) in this situation and you suspect your sweet baby is "on strike" here are a few tips that might help:
  • Try nursing when the baby is asleep or very sleepy, such as during the night or while napping. Many babies who refuse to nurse when they are awake will nurse when they are sleepy.
  • Vary nursing positions. Some babies will refuse to nurse in one position but take the breast in another.
  • Nurse when in motion. Some babies are more likely to nurse when rocking or walking rather than sitting or standing still.
  • Nurse in an environment that is free from distractions. Some babies, especially babies older than three months or so, may be easily distracted. Turn off the radio and television, and try nursing in a quiet, darkened room.
  • Give the baby extra attention and skin-to-skin contact. Focused attention and extra touching are comforting to both mother and baby. When offering the breast, whenever possible undress to the waist and clothe the baby in just a diaper. Use a shawl or blanket around both of you if the room is chilly.
  • A baby sling or carrier can help keep the baby close between attempts to nurse. Taking warm baths together can also be soothing. Sleeping together provides extra closeness and more opportunities to nurse while the baby is sleeping.

 Every baby is different, just like every Mummie is different. Do what works for you and your Nummie Lover. Try things that you think will work, things you don't think that will work, and ask questions. Plus you could also come here (to Mummies Nummies) because you are NOT ALONE!!!



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