Maybe he really NEEDS milk at night. 17mo DS is 19 lbs. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 01-31-2008, 02:00 AM - Thread Starter
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I have been working on semi-nightweaning for a month now. He is down to nursing only once or twice and sleeps 4-5 hours at the start of the night compared to waking every 2 hours, so there has been some improvements. BUT, when he nursed he seems sooo hungry, he just glugs the milk back and changed sides twice before he is done and turns away to go to sleep. I nurse him at 3 or 4am, and usually he wakes at 5 or 6 to nurse again. If its 6 he is up for the day. My ds is only 19lbs, which is below the 3rd percentile on the charts (has been since about 6 or 7 months). I am struggling with the decision to try and get him to give up night nursing all together because he is such a little guy and he seems hungry to me. Has anyone else had this experience? Do you think he is really hungry? Once night weaned do they start to eat more in the day? He is such a light eater.

Thanks for your insight
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#2 of 9 Old 01-31-2008, 02:38 AM
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I answered on your other thread too...

What you describe certainly sounds like his nursing is in part nutritional in nature. I would not be comfortable eliminating those sessions in this case.

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#3 of 9 Old 01-31-2008, 03:26 PM
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I would agree that he needs those calories at night. I have a 15m old that weighs 18-19lbs, and nurses several times at night. It's not a matter of comfort nursing for her, she really is hungry. My DD1 was the same way, very thin, and needed to nurse very frequently. She is 5y old now, weighs a whopping 33 lbs and often will wake up and need a snack and water. I know where they get it from, I've always been very thin my entire life, I'm "heavy" for me right now and I'm 5'5 and 106 lbs. Ever since I was a child I've kept a stash of food and water next to my bed to eat in the middle of the night because I frequently wake up starving, and I never can get through the night without drinking water, and neither can DD1, that is part of our night time routine, fill up her water bottle.

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#4 of 9 Old 01-31-2008, 05:34 PM
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I have a 30 pound 16 month old and she nurses EXACTLY as you described. So...I dunno! I just roll with it! I'm looking forward to longer chunks of sleep someday, but oh well.

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#5 of 9 Old 01-31-2008, 05:51 PM
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I wouldn't eliminate them if he seems to be getting a lot of milk and he seems hungry. It seems like he can use the calories. You would have to get up and get him a snack then if he was hungry. Nursing sounds easier... If its just a latch on, suck a minute to fall back asleep I would think night weaning would not hurt.
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#6 of 9 Old 01-31-2008, 06:03 PM
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My DD (22 mo) is also small (finally passed the 20 lb mark at 18 mo), and I would feel bad about nightweaning her because she definitely gets a lot of calories at night. However, I'd be thrilled if she just woke up 2 times to get her boobie milk rather than 2 million.

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#7 of 9 Old 01-31-2008, 07:45 PM
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Lots of toddlers don't eat much, which is why nursing is so important til age 2 (or they need a substitute milk in their diet.) I wouldn't be comfortable nightweaning in this situation- he might not eat enough during the day to compensate for the decreased milk at night, and potentially could lose weight.

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#8 of 9 Old 01-31-2008, 07:48 PM
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Only your toddler knows if he is hungry at night or not. Only your toddler and you, because you know him better than anyone else.

Any doctor, friend, relative, or parenting author who says he is not hungry doesn't know what they are talking about.

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#9 of 9 Old 02-01-2008, 12:59 AM
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My 18 month old is 19lbs. We just went through a whole round of tests to make sure nothing was causing him growing trouble. Everything was normal, he's just a tiny guy! I'm pregnant now and have no milk but he still nurses, so I give him cow's milk. He sleeps through the night but if he ever wakes I always give him a bottle of milk. I've also made it a point to give him a bedtime snack, which is usually whole fat yogurt. If the nightwaking is wearing you out, try giving him a snack before bed and see if that helps him sleep a little longer. But definitely don't deny him the breast milk-he really needs the fat and calories from it right now!
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