How to encourage 12 month old to nurse?

Avatar for margaret68
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-01-2003
How to encourage 12 month old to nurse?
Mon, 02-07-2005 - 6:10am

Hi to all!
I'm a rare poster here, but I have a question and hoped you all might be able to help.
I'm currently nursing my third child, who is almost 13 months old. He was exclusively bfed until 6 months, never used a bottle or pacifier, doesn't suck his thumb.
Just recently we moved him out of our room into his siblings' room. Until then, he'd been waking several times a night, nursing every time. After the move, he sleeps all night, no waking! Which is great as far as sleep (yea!) but has had a significant impact on the amount of nursing that takes place.

I'm a SAHM, so he has unlimited access to me all day and I'll nurse whenever he likes, but he seems to be losing interest.
Specifically, he latches on, but just sort of plays. He doesn't produce that good strong suction to get the milk out.
I want him to keep getting milk from me, as we don't give him any cow's milk products or formula, but I feel he's getting a very small amount now that his habits have changed.

I don't want to go back to sleeping in the same room with him or getting up at night. I mean, he's obviously moved past that, and he's a much happier baby now that he sleeps better. Not to mention how much better it is for the rest of the family to have a rested Mommy and Daddy...

Does anyone know a way to encourage him to nurse more strongly?

Thanks in advance!


iVillage Member
Registered: 10-28-2004
Mon, 02-07-2005 - 10:54am

I am not an expert on the matter by any stretch of the imagination, but we are in the same situation of trying to encourage dd to nurse more often/longer. What seems to be working for me is that when it is almost nap time/bed time I take her into my room (no distractions or toys) and lay with her on the bed. I offer her the choice of milk or night night if she starts to get distracted, and if she doesn't latch on again, it is off to rest. I do the same thing right when she wakes. Other than that, she doesn't nurse much during the day or night. Hopefully you will find something that will work for you guys!

Sarah and Elizabeth 12.22.03

Avatar for margaret68
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-01-2003
Tue, 02-08-2005 - 6:03am


Thanks for the idea! I do something similar already in the evenings, and that is the one time of day when he is a bit more serious about actually trying to get some milk.

I'd love to hear thoughts from anyone on this...don't want to stop this soon!

Margaret with nursling Endre, 1/14/04