You must me wondering now what is this weaning. So in simple terms, weaning happens when your baby starts getting his daily dose of essential nutrients from sources other than your breasts.
Now whether a baby has milk from a bottle, formula feed, semi solids with the help of a spoon, weaning process has already begun in your child. Weaning is a natural process just like any other and it is also equally important to watch out for signs of weaning.
Weaning can be both child-led and mother-led.
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When a baby himself does not feel the need to nurse or be attached to a mother’s breasts is when it is a child-led weaning. The child himself shows signs that his nutritional needs are being met from solids he is eating. Your baby will show signs of weaning when he is a year old or more. This way, your baby will also lower his intake of breast milk gradually.
As far as the time of child-led weaning is concerned, it naturally happens anytime when your baby is between 2 and 4 years old. This is, of course, when we don’t intervene in the process. But this is not given. Since every child is different, child-led weaning can happen for different babies at different times as well.
This is the most common thing that we, as parents, do. We tend to wean our children earlier than they naturally would. However, one thing to be considered when weaning your baby is that he may not always be ready to do it.
So it is extremely important to be very gentle and patient while doing it. Our little ones have different emotional and physical needs when they are still so young. So, forcing weaning process upon your baby for whatever reason will only be disrespectful towards them.
Considering this, there are signs that a child can show if you go at your pace to wean him forcefully. These signs can be anything like –
- Too much crying or clingy behavior
- Separation anxiety in your baby
- Your baby may wake up more frequently at night
- He may get attached to something else suddenly
- He may start biting when he never did that before
I know that especially for working mothers, where it gets increasingly difficult, self weaning a child becomes equally important. But do watch out for any out of the ordinary behavioral signs that your baby may show. That will be proof that you’re rushing things with him.
Please remember that like other natural processes, weaning process is also one of them. Like I mentioned earlier, some babies naturally wean earlier than other babies do. In fact, science has proved that if you forcefully try to wean your baby, a change in his behavior is a sign of violated trust and you will only be forcing a child to be independent before he should actually be.
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All of this is bound to bring a lot of unnecessary problems for both the parents and the baby. So, it is important to watch out for natural signs that your baby is ready.
If you have any questions of your own, please let us know and we’d be happy to help you out with anything.