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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay....I can kinda tell from the word "strike" that it is when a baby stops nursing for a period of time. But I'm curious to know more about it. My first child never had a nursing strike (though at 2.5 years sometimes I wish he would) and now I have a 3 month old who doesn't nurse as fervently as my first and wondering if at some point he will refuse to nurse. Why does this happen? How long does it last? How do you get through it? My SIL said that at 5.5 months her first baby refused to nurse and at 6 months her second baby refused to nurse. She said, "They weaned themselves" and started giving them formula.
I'm guessing they were just on a nursing strike, but I really don't know since this whole concept seems so weird to me. Why would a baby turn their nose up to good ol' mama milk?
 

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some babies after getting fed bottles frequently know the ease at which the milk flows out and will start to prefer them over the breast.

from what I understand its more a liking of the method than the type of milk they get.

hope that eases your mind!

christi
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My babies will never get a bottle. "What's the point?" says dh, especially since I have the luxury of being a SAHM. So is it correct to say this doesn't happen unless you sometimes give baby a bottle?
 

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I couldn't tell you for sure that it is the ONLY way it starts. I just jnow it is something my lact. cons. warned our group about in reference to supplemental feedings.

christi
 

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Maybe mom ate something that didn't agree with the baby? Of those things that change the taste of breast milk, I mean. Or maybe was stressed?
 

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IMO, nursing strikes can occur even when you feel you are doing everything "right". Ds, expecially around 3 months when he started "teething" began the nursing strikes. He would refuse to nurse for hours on end, getting crankier and crankier. Eventually he would nurse out of hunger, but I honestly think his gums (or his tummy?
: ) were bothering him and it just made it hard for him to nurse. On the outside, I was frustrated (why won't he nurse?? Its been hours since he's eaten! I've tried this position and that, lying down, walking around, in the sling, sitting, bouncing, walks outside, etc......) but I just KNEW he'd nurse when he was ready and he DID. You just have to kinda stick it out, keep working at what the problem might be. Is it gas? Are you eating too much of one thing? Sweets often made ds not want to nurse. So did sweet potatoes and super spicy food (since I dont eat it on a regular basis). Just know that they WILL nurse again, just concentrate on relaxing and ensuring a good letdown. Eat easily digestable foods (yummy soups, etc...), pamper yourself (happy mama usually means a happier baby
) and just keep offering some good wholesome boob, lol.

We had plenty of nursing strikes and I understood why some mamas would assume "I'm not good enough anymore" or something along those lines, but with support, its definately doable.
 

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Sometimes they get a pain association with nursing. Maybe sever tummy pain from reflux or a bad yeast infection in the mouth that hurts and they just think in turns of nursing = pain. Some start to prefer bottle feeding to the breast. I havnt had to deal with a nursing strike but neither of my kids have had thrush or had bottles.
: I am sure there are many many reasons why a baby would go on a strike.
 

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My first DD had a nursing strike that lasted about 2 months..... Thankfully (oddly) it was just the left breast she had an issue with.
I am not sure what caused it, but I tried different positions, places, times of day, had her checked for ear infections or other problems, and still she refused to nurse from the left breast. I eventually found that if I placed her on her changing table and stood over her she would feed from the left side. lol After a while it stopped being an issue for her.

So the supplementing wasn't a thing for us as she never had a bottle in her life.
 

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I think Kellymom has a good piece on this... my DD went on a complete nursing strike for 2 days (when she was about 10 mo) - cried everytime I offered the breast except for once at night when I snuck it - and 2 days later all of a sudden was back to nursing like nothing happened. The only reason I could figure out was combined pain of cutting 4 teeth and having a cold w/ lots of head/chest congestion....

I followed the advice I saw on here, basically constantly skin to skin, bath/nap together, hot steamy bath, offer the breast constantly, nothing else for her to suck on, no solids, just 'breast milk popsicle' and that seemed to work for us. It is not good to give formula during a strike... that's basically a synopsis of things I've read here in the past!

hth, callie
 

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Mine had a nursing strike after she bit me (she was teething), and I yelped in pain. It freaked her out, and it was a couple of days before she would nurse during the day. She nursed at night okay; she was too sleepy to remember that boobie was frightening. I nursed at night, I pumped and fed her bm in a bottle, and we got through it with lots of patience and cuddling. She had a couple non-nursing spells (2-4 days) when she had a bad cold and couldn't breathe, too.
 
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