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Top 3 Reasons Moms Stop Breastfeeding

Top 3 Reasons Moms Stop Breastfeeding

Most moms know about the benefits of breastfeeding, but what about the reasons moms stop nursing? Around 80% of moms in the US begin breastfeeding their newborns, but only about a third of them are still nursing by the time their babies turn one.

Through studies and questionnaires, scientists and breastfeeding advocates have narrowed down some of the most common reasons moms have given for the reasons they ultimately stopped nursing:

  • Concerns about milk supply (quantity or quality)
  • Feeding problems (trouble with latch, mastitis, pain)
  • Lack of support

How can this information help you?

Well, since knowledge truly is power, especially for establishing and maintaining a healthy breastfeeding relationship, you’re off to a good start. You know the top reasons moms have stopped nursing before they’re ready, and that means you can address these possible issues before they become full obstacles along the way.

How to Address Concerns about Milk Supply

First things first, give yourself a break. Our bodies have an incredible ability to provide our babies with exactly the right nutrients at the right time.

The best gauge of a well-nourished baby is counting wet and soiled diapers each day. If this number seems off or you have other reasons for concern, reach out to your pediatrician or find an IBCLC near you.

The odds are you and your baby are both doing exactly what you’re supposed to do, but the stress of worrying that you’re not “enough” can have a negative impact on you.

How to Address Feeding Problems

Nursing is natural and beautiful, but it’s not an innate talent—it’s a learned skill, for both you and your baby. Babies may have to be taught how to latch several times during your breastfeeding journey, even if they’ve already been successfully nursing for a few months.

If you’re experiencing pain (or have any other concerns), an IBCLC will be able to assess your baby’s latch, assess for potential issues like a tongue or lip tie, and give you pointers on positions that can make everything easier.

Your OBGYN can also be a valuable resource, especially if you’re concerned about mastitis or plugged ducts.

How to Address Lack of Support

The important thing to remember is that having support isn’t just about having friends and family who agree with your decision to breastfeed. While these loved ones are invaluable, the type of support that can make the difference for nursing moms is other nursing moms.

Whether you attend a breastfeeding support group (Baby Café or La Leche League), join an online community, or just get together with a couple of friends who are also nursing moms, these women can often be the first line of defense in encouraging you to keep breastfeeding.

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Additional References:

Top 3 Reasons Moms Stop Breastfeeding

3 Reasons Moms Stop Nursing

Why moms stop breastfeeding

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