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You may choose to wait until your child is a toddler (ages 1
to 2 years) or older to
wean him or her from the breast. You may feel that
your toddler isn't ready for weaning until later or that you both aren't
ready. You may want to initiate it or just let your child stop
breast-feeding on his or her own (self-wean).
You can wean your child gradually or abruptly.
One way to let a toddler control his or her own weaning is through the
"don't offer, don't refuse" method. This means that you never offer to
breast-feed your child but do not refuse when your child asks or shows a desire
This can be a slow process. But when the mother is
committed to weaning and provides encouragement to her child, a toddler can
wean himself or herself successfully and happily.
techniques may help you gradually wean your toddler:
Some mothers prefer to abruptly wean their toddler from the breast. This approach
may be best suited for a toddler who nurses fewer than 3 times a day.
When weaning abruptly, choose a time when
you don't anticipate other major changes in your or your toddler's life and when you have extra time to spend
with your child.
Current as of:
October 9, 2013
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
& Thomas Emmett Francoeur, MD, MDCM, CSPQ, FRCPC - Pediatrics
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