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How to stop breastfeeding

To stop breastfeeding is a significant milestone, and how you approach it can make the process smoother for both you and your child. One of the most common complications during weaning is the risk of breast engorgement. Understanding this risk and how to manage it is essential to ensure a smooth transition from breastfeeding to weaning. Download the LEIA Health app for more advice on breastfeeding and to access the feeding log.

Let it take time

It's beneficial to allow the weaning process to take time so that your baby's stomach can adjust to different foods, and your breasts can gradually decrease milk production. If your breasts feel full, you can express a little milk to avoid swelling and pain. This is a "parent-led weaning," so don't be surprised if your child shows some initial dissatisfaction. Be sure to offer your child extra closeness.

Baby–led weaning

With a "baby-led weaning," you allow your child to guide the process at their own pace. This assumes that your child is old enough to rule out temporary breastfeeding refusal due to factors like teething, colds, and similar issues. In our experience, baby-led weaning rarely occurs before eighteen months of age.

Or perhaps the optimal approach – a joint decision!

Things to note about breastfeeding

When you stop breastfeeding, there's a risk of breast engorgement, meaning that the milk in your breasts isn't emptied adequately, leading to pain and swelling. To reduce the risk of breast engorgement, you can gradually decrease breastfeeding and ensure your breasts are emptied regularly. If you experience symptoms of breast engorgement, such as tenderness, redness, or a lump in the breast, it's essential to seek help from a healthcare provider. Read more about milk duct blockage here.

"The feeding log in the LEIA Health app helped me establish routines around feeding my child''

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