10 Tips to Stop Breastfeeding

When it comes time for your breastfeeding journey to end, consider how you will stop to reduce your chances of mastitis or engorgement. The process of ending your breastfeeding journey is called weaning. This may take a few weeks or several months. No matter your reason of weaning, whether it be a demanding job or low milk supply, you did a great job feeding your baby. Don't forget to celebrate your journey, now matter how it looked! 

It's almost important to note that your emotions might be a roller coaster during this process. Fluctuating hormones are partially to blame. Breastfeeding also created a special bond between you and your baby and it can be hard to close this chapter and start a new one. Give yourself some grace and continue to nourish your body with healthy food, get enough rest and be open with your partner or mental health professional. Consider filling the time you spent breastfeeding or pumping with a new hobby. 

So without further adieu, here are 10 tips to stop breastfeeding.  

  1. Remove your child's least favorite feeding or pump session every few days (the first and last feeding of the day will probably be the last to go).
  2. Cut a few minutes off of each feeding or pump session.
  3. Combine breast milk and formula to replace one of your baby's regular feedings.
  4. If you become engorged, try to hand express or use a hand pump to relieve some of the discomfort. Just remember that the more milk you remove, the more your body will replace it with. 
  5. Wear a supportive bra and a nursing bra liner as your breasts may leak.
  6. Use cold packs or cold cabbage leaves to relieve discomfort.
  7. Offer your child plenty of liquids and solid food if age-appropriate (check with your pediatrician first). 
  8. Transfer bedtime duties to your partner if bedtime is associated with breastfeeding. 
  9. Consider an herbal tea that contains sage, peppermint, chasteberry, parsley or jasmine.
  10. Skip methods like binding and restricting fluids.