Need some advise re weaning signs

(15 Posts)
3plus2 Fri 14-Dec-12 11:05:10

My baby is 4 months a 2 weeks old , she is EBF and has been cluster feeding for about a week and it seems like my milk just cannot meet her demands , she screams at the breast and gets darn grumpy as I have a slow let down she then finally gets the milk and is settled but she only lasts about an hour and a half to 2 hours. She has become increasingly interested in our food and grabs out at it she even grabbed at my toast and pulled it to her mouth as she does if I have a drink in my hand. I am not keen to wean early. I did try her with some baby rice and she was really enjoying it , getting really excited grabbing for the spoon and didn't spit one but out , I only let her have about 4 small spoons to see what her reaction would be. Afterwards she was so happy and singing and gurgling which is the first time she has seemed that happy. Do you think we will last till 6 months? I am happy too as long as she is she is prepared to wait ?

Weaning signs: the ability to sit with minimal/no assistance and the ability to look at, accurately grab, and bring food to the mouth without assistance. Level of hunger doesn't really enter into it. The reason she's hungry is because four months is when a huge developmental and growth spurt occurs and they need the level of calories that only milk can provide. By giving her the sorts of foods that you can only give to a baby of her age (baby rice, gluten free baby porridge and fruit/veg purées) you'd be filling her up on low calorie foods, thus reducing her net calorie intake and she may start trying to make it up with more frequent night feeding. Her frustration while breastfeeding is because she's either trying to build your supply, or needs more frequent feeding - try offering more feeds, or go back to the first side after she's finished the second.

My DS was also grabbing for toast at that age to put in his mouth, but he was also grabbing for electricity bills, my phone and the dogs for the same reason - I didn't take it as a sign that he was hungry, babies just want to put everything new into their mouths!

Will you make it to six months? Probably, unless she gets up herself and goes out to the kitchen to get herself a snack smile

3plus2 Sat 15-Dec-12 19:37:50

Hello thank you for your reply , she gets to 6/7 I clock and is just really ravenous sucking away screaming arching her back kickicking this goes on for like an hour and it's getting me down this has been for over a week so I don't think it's cluster feeding anymore , don't think it's teething as I give her relief for that , it's not reflux , I think she hungry I don't know but I tried her with a bit of baby yog suitable from 4 months and well she virtually ate the spoon with it she couldn't get it in quick enough and she didn't spit one bit out , I'm really wanting to get to 6 months and am hoping to breastfeed until a year but I'm getting in a right state now I don't know what I'm doing shock

nancerama Sat 15-Dec-12 20:10:45

What Elphaba said. Babies have a massive growth spurt at around 4 months. The cluster feeding can go on for 2 or 3 weeks. My DS was cluster feeding pretty much all night for a couple of weeks.

MistressIggi Sat 15-Dec-12 20:19:00

If she has had baby rice and yogurt, surely that means you have started weaning?
Neither of those will have more calories than milk. She may want to eat things, but you don't know what her body wants. Might it be easierto set a target of, say, 5 months, and stop the solids till then?
Fwiw, my 6 month old is forever feeding, but I'm aware it's not always out of hunger.

MistressIggi Sat 15-Dec-12 20:20:28

I meant to add, you are doing really well with the bf, it is very hard when they cluster feed like that.

Welovecouscous Sat 15-Dec-12 20:27:46

Almost certainly just a growth spurt - cluster feeding around 4 months is really normal as they do a huge developmental leap then. Plus usually sleep regression as well. Understandably mums worry that this is because their baby is underfed but it is almost never the case.

If your baby has enough wet and dirty nappies and is gaining weight properly when plotted on her red book chart there is very unlikely to be a food intake problem.

According to my bf book i have here La leche league advises not weaning babies until the following is true:

Can sit by themselves
No more tongue thrust reflex
Can take food themselves from the table
Can swallow food themselves
They are around 6 months old.

The six months thing is because giving solids before that can make your child more vulnerably to asthma and allergies because the gut wall is not properly sealed.

Sounds to me like your dd does not have true weaning signs. I would go to your HV to get her weighed to allay your concerns, join a local bf drop in group to get support and keep ebf, dropping the yogurt and baby rice.

My DS was cluster feeding like mad at 4 months and hardly sleeping, he was a 98th centile baby, but I waited until 6 months to give him solids and he continued to gain weight properly and is very happy and healthy generally.

Welovecouscous Sat 15-Dec-12 20:29:16

Mistress is right btw - you are doing brilliantly with the ebf and just need to keep up all your good work smile

After this stage it all gets easier and easier!

MikeOxardInTheSnow Sat 15-Dec-12 20:40:25

With what you describe, and her being clearly much happier after a few spoons of baby rice, I would carry on giving her a few spoons a day, and just start weaning very slowly and gently. It is early, but every baby is different and the guidelines are (I think) wait until 6 months if you can, but from 4 months in some cases. Most may not be ready until 6 months, but some will be at 4. I would trust your own judgement on it.

Welovecouscous Sat 15-Dec-12 21:03:26

No one advises 4 months in the uk. Weaning under 6 months is only advisable under medical supervision is the guidance.

gwenniebee Sat 15-Dec-12 21:07:15

My dd did that - she's five months now and it's all calmed down again, but at four months she suddenly started waking in the night and feeding much more frequently in the day. It did calm down after about ten days and now I am much more confident that she isn't ready yet. (She's not sitting unaided, and I really don't want to wean before she can hold herself up for longer.)

MistressIggi Sat 15-Dec-12 22:57:06

How can your own judgement tell you what's going on inside your baby's gut?

3plus2 Mon 17-Dec-12 11:57:54

Cluster feeding has settled ! Finally , it's been so hard sad but we are there smile so going to try and leave it a few more weeks .....

gwenniebee Mon 17-Dec-12 14:42:12

Well done for hanging on smile

Welovecouscous Mon 17-Dec-12 15:00:45

Good call op - you just need to carry on doing the wonderful job you are doing until you get to 6 months smile

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