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All was going according to plan until he started refusing his bottles

Hi Leanne,
My 8 months old baby is still being breastfed. He is also on solids and really enjoys eating all different types of food (yoghurt, smashed fruits, veggies & meat). He goes to childcare so I can work. All was going according to plan until he started refusing his bottles while still he eats his food.

He used to drink 2 bottles of around 130-150mL of breast milk during the day without any issues. On the top of that he would have morning & afternoon teas (e.g., fruits, yoghurt) and lunch (veggies & meat).

When he started refusing the "milk" (about 3 weeks now), the girls at the childcare started to mix it with farex. It was okay until the last couple of days when he would not eat farex with breast milk (or formula)... but he still eats his fruits, yoghurt and veggies/meat.

I would like to know how much milk a 8 months old baby needs and also if there is any way we could overcome this problem.

Aditional info: he is theething and had a bit of oral thrush, but it is pretty much gone now. He does not refuse being breastfed when we are home (nights & weekends).

Thanks for your help.
Kind Regards,
Ana.

Leann...
Answer: Hi Ana, That is good background info, all of which could have affected his appetite for BM. I just wonder if it is an issue of location also? Possibly there is a lot going on at child care, and so slowing down to have a bottle may be just not on the cards. Also, there can be an association with `milk` feeds and you, hence he may prefer to wait for the `real thing` with you. I am sure much of this has crossed your mind and now it begs the question; what to do? Forcing the issue can have the opposite effect, so often it is more helpful to use baby`s milk (as the staff have done) in their food. If you find though that he begins to refuse foods that have been mixed with BM then hold off on this. Keep offering bottles (or age appropriate sipper cups) of BM or formula even if it is refused. You may want to look at smaller feeds but more often so he has the opportunity to drink when ready. I also wonder if there is the option to have 3-4 feeds at home? One as soon as you collect him, one before dinner and one in the morning? This could potentially reach his 3-4 feeds a day requirement. The exact amount a bub requires differs greatly, and ultimately your baby is your best guide. Breastfed bubs of this age will normally have 3-5 feeds a day before solids (then after solids from about 9 months). If baby is growing well, and is happy and healthy, then all is likely to be fine. Keep offering, slipping it into food where you can and consider a slight adjustment to his feeding routine. You may just find that things settle down soon. If you find things get worse or bub`s growth etc is being affected pop into your CHN or GP. All the best, Leanne
Answered: 01 Jul 2009