Now that you have successfully carried out the breastfeeding phase, you need to gently end this relationship with your toddler. Breastfeeding is a great commitment as it needs your care, both emotionally and physically.
When you decide that your toddler is old enough to start on solids and milk other than breastmilk then you need to be firm on this decision. You will be challenged emotionally when your child refuses food in the beginning but then this is for his own good.
Tips to wean your breastfeeding toddler
When your toddler is all set to enter his preschool you need to make a tough decision to call off breastfeeding. Here are some handy tips that will make this switch from breastmilk to food items a healthy one:
Introduce variety of food
In the absence of breastmilk your toddler might feel irritated and you might have to give him a variety of food to choose from so that his tummy can be full. His eating habits can be tricky so you make sure that you make food interesting and fun as well. You can play with colors, taste or appearance of the food that will attract your toddler and he will eat it with more pleasure. Remember not to force feed him just offer him variety and see what he likes. So continue to feed him that for some time and then introduce something more healthy and attractive.
Distracting your little one from breastfeeding is a good idea to get a break from breastfeeding. You can play with him by introducing any art activity that includes coloring or a simple jigsaw puzzle. This will distract the mind of your child from breastfeeding and he will indulge in playing for a longer period of time. He might get so busy in playing that he will not be interested in breastfeeding anymore. This will make the switch from breastfeeding to food for your baby a simple one.
It is time for your toddler to understand that he is a grown up now and you will stop nursing him. This will create awareness in him and he will welcome this change with ease without getting irritated or angry when breastmilk is not offered to him. Make sure that your toddler is at peace and is listening to you when you are talking to him. Use short sentences while communicating your message so that he knows that every child goes through the same thing every now and then and it is a normal process.
If you really want your toddler to stop asking for breastmilk then you should stop offering him breastmilk when he does not need it or is not asking for it on his own. At night you can nurse your child but during the day if your toddler is not asking for breastmilk then it is a good time to indulge him into other food items that are important for his growth.
Let him get irritated
You might be surprised with the tantrums that your child is throwing to get breastmilk and he will appear to be cranky than before but your attention, hugs and love should be enough for him to calm him down and be normal. If he cries then it is just normal and you are not supposed to rush towards him to breastfeed him. Snuggle him, talk to him and indulge him in playful activities to distract his mind so that he can be happy again.
Make sure that he is full
If you have decided to stop breastfeeding then you have to make sure that your child is getting enough nutrition to grow in a healthy way. Make sure that you are offering plenty of calories to your child in a day to keep him energetic and healthy. He might not eat in one go so you offer him food in small portions and introduce variety to develop his interest in food items. This way he will be less attracted towards breastfeeding and he will distract his attention on his own.
Stop nursing your child slowly
You just can’t expect a big change in your child and you do not expect him to eat food when you stop nursing him. You need to go step by step when it comes to stopping nursing as you and your child’s body has to undergo many changes when you start weaning process and stop nursing. If you are nursing five times in a day then for a week nurse your child for four times and then next week reduce it to three and then two. You need to observe the changes that weaning brings in your child’s routine and yours as well.
Just keep these simple tips in your mind and you are all set for the weaning process of your baby with success.