4 month old...nursing like a newborn, start solids? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 02-18-2012, 07:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My second daughter is 4 months old and still, since she was born, is nursing every 2 hours as much as every hour DAY and NIGHT..I'm exhausted and never getting a break for my 3 year old. I tried her with a few bites of solids the past few days just to see if she would slow down and because she has shown every sign of being ready..grabbing my food, sucking and swallowing what I give her, almost sitting by herself, cutting two teeth..but so far I haven't noticed much difference in her sleeping or eating habits. She doesn't sleep for longer than an hour at a time either, day or night, wakes up, nurses again and goes back to sleep. She is actually eating too, not just comfort sucking.

Any ideas? Should I continue on with the solids? What would be best to start with? How to fill her up so she goes longer between feedings and sleeps longer?

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#2 of 10 Old 02-18-2012, 10:06 AM
 
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How long does she nurse on each breast?

 

Avocado, sweet potatoes, banana, pears, winter squash are healthy, safe starters.   Infant cereal mixed with breastmilk is good, too.


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#3 of 10 Old 02-18-2012, 10:22 AM
 
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Solids should not be started until at least 6 months.

http://www.kellymom.com/nutrition/solids/delay-solids.html

 

And honestly, they tend to do very little to help a baby sleep longer, and may actually make the situation worse as their digestive systems try to adapt to the changes in their diet.

 

It sounds like you are experiencing the dreaded 4-month sleep regression, which is a doozy.

http://www.kellymom.com/parenting/sleep/4mo-sleep.html


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#4 of 10 Old 02-18-2012, 02:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Bokonon View Post

Solids should not be started until at least 6 months.

http://www.kellymom.com/nutrition/solids/delay-solids.html

 

And honestly, they tend to do very little to help a baby sleep longer, and may actually make the situation worse as their digestive systems try to adapt to the changes in their diet.

 

It sounds like you are experiencing the dreaded 4-month sleep regression, which is a doozy.

http://www.kellymom.com/parenting/sleep/4mo-sleep.html


I agree with all of this, especially the 4 month sleep regression! At least it is normal - which can give some reassurance. Hang in there!

 

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#5 of 10 Old 02-18-2012, 09:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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oh thank goodness...I was hoping it was a stage of some sort. She nurses very shortly on each breast, maybe 5 mins each time, she was waking only twice a night between the first 2-3 months and then regressed I guess. My first didn't do this...from what I remember... I will just keep on going for now and just let her 'taste' not actually eat for another few months. Thanks ladies, definitely made me feel more at ease that this too will pass!

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#6 of 10 Old 02-25-2012, 09:32 AM
 
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Even tasting at 4 months will affect the digestive system. If the baby's digestive system is irritated by food then the baby may breastfeed more because she thinks she is hungry. Babies can't tell the difference between an upset digestive system and hunger.  Some babies will even breastfeed to the point that they become large (people don't like saying breastfed babies are overweight or obese). For decades we thought 4 months was a good age for starting solids but a review of many studies found that 6 months is better. 


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#7 of 10 Old 03-02-2012, 05:22 AM
 
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I'm going through the same thing with my 4 month old.  He's a big boy....almost 16 lbs.  I am going crazy with him waking up constantly to nurse all night!  And like yours, he's not just sucking for comfort, he's GULPING down milk.  I've lost so much weight from this baby eating so much that I'm starting to look like a different person and not really in a good way!  I thought it was the sleep regression thing when it started, but I think he's actually hungry.

 

I did find that my first son slept better after I introduced solids, despite people saying that it doesn't help.  I didn't start at 4 months, but did a little before 6 months...maybe 5.5.  Not that I'm saying you should do it...that is your decision and you have to do what you think is right for your baby in your situation.

 

Does your baby take a bottle?  Maybe you could try giving him a big bottle of pumped milk right before bed?  My son won't take more than an oz from a bottle (which really sucks because when I work at night, he pretty much will only eat enough to stave off starvation :( )  But if yours will take one, I have heard that can help!  

 

Good luck!

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#8 of 10 Old 03-04-2012, 06:08 PM
 
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Id say sleep regression plus a growth spurt. Has happened with each of my 3 and it SUCKS! I tried 1 try of solids when my oldest was around 4 1/2 and it made it so much worse (gave her horrible gas, she was in pain from it greensad.gif), we spent all night up. So didn't give her solids again until she was interested in them and could self feed.

 

It does normalize more after about 2 weeks. Its a hard stage, 4-6 months kills me every time. I know a lot of people love those ages but for me its exhaustion and non-stop eating on both our parts.


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#9 of 10 Old 03-08-2012, 05:29 PM
 
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Is baby bed sharing with you? Having baby nestled next to you makes night time breastfeeding much easier (versus getting out of bed).

The frequency which your baby nurses is very much like most of the world's babies. In societies that nurse unrestricted, several feeds per hour during the day, plus several feeds per night, is very common until age two or more.

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#10 of 10 Old 03-09-2012, 12:10 PM
 
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This sounds a lot like my now 20 month old son. He nursed every two hours for the first year, round the clock, and he woke to nurse every 1-3 hours until this past week when I night weaned him. It didn't matter what I tried to feed him or if he was ready or capable of handling solids (I didn't start really giving him regular solids until he was 9-10 months) he still wanted to nurse. Does your daughter have allergy issues? I wouldn't start pushing solids at 4 months in hopes that she'll stop nursing so much. More than likely you'll just end up frustrated that she still wants to nurse and wake often. I always saw it as my son being the type of personality that needs a lot of reassurance. He needed to be close to me and feel comforted. I would try and hang on as long as possible just allowing your daughter to ask for what she needs. It's not like she's a two year old demanding to nurse. At this point she really does need it.

 

That being said, I know that it's really hard and tiring...so of course do what you need to so that you don't resent her nursing so frequently.


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