Babies: 6 - 9 Months

Dealing with distracted baby when nursing

I remember this with my older son at this age. Starting last month, it is SO hard to get LO to breastfeed in the middle of the day. He nurses great first thing in the morning and at bedtime. But all day long, he is sooooo distracted. I try to nurse in his room as much as possible. Or in the living room, with the TV off. But my 3-year-old is the biggest distraction. LO doesn't want to miss a thing so he will detach to turn at any small noise. Or he plays with my face and stops to smile at me. So sweet and I love it, but he needs to eat!

I have tried wearing a nursing necklace he can play with. Sometimes works. Any other suggestions? I think he is getting plenty. His wet diapers are still fine. He is a good sleeper. He eats solids well, but we don't over feed him. He has rice cereal and 4 oz baby food twice a day.

If he doesn't nurse well after his am nap, I sometimes try again before his afternoon nap. Sometimes he eats and it helps him get to sleep. Other times, it is like he is mad at me for offering it. He's always been a little bit little percentage wise (25% give or take 5% since 1 month), but he is chunky. I keep telling myself that he is just really effecient now. but he nurses much longer at 7 am and 7 pm!

I replaced the late morning nursing with formula around 8 months with my first son and didn't pump to replace since I have never responded well to a pump. So of course that led to the end of nursing. Not a huge deal since I didn't want to past a year old, but this time around I'd like to go to 12-15 months since he's my last. Maybe I should just let him keep doing what he's doing and he'll kind of wean himself?

Re: Dealing with distracted baby when nursing

  • A couple of months ago I thought we were nearing the end of nursing since Skylar was sooooo distracted. Someone suggested we side-lay and we've been doing it ever since. I'd say 75% of the time we nurse laying down. For us, it's the only thing that helps!
  • My DS will only nurse when he's really sleepy, so that ends up being before each nap and bedtime and sometimes in the early morning if he doesn't sleep through.  If he does sleep through, I get up a few minutes early and pump so he can drink that milk in a cup and if he doesn't nurse well before his naps, I pump during his naptime as well.

    Ends up being a lot of pumping, but it's just for a few more months.

    My DD was a distracted nurser, but as long as I nursed her in a darkish, quiet room, she was o.k.

    image image Ashley Sawtelle Photography
  • DD gets distracted during the mid day feeds.  I try to make sure I nurse her in the glider with the pillow where she is most comfortable, sometimes i need to turn off the tv, computer etc- so she can focus.  If she doesn't nurse well I will just stop and then try again when she fusses.  If she is hungry she will eat.


  • Could you try a nursing cover?  That may keep him focused a little bit. 
    Good luck! We're struggling too. I hate my nursing cover I have, but just ordered a nursing poncho- I can't wait to get it!!!!!!  It's on it's way. 
    Lovin' Life: M+D 7/06, T 1/08, B 5/10
    Getting back to it- my diet and exercise blog
    Losing it...Without Losing it
  • I know I'm pretty late to this but I do have a few suggestions.  If you really want to get LO to eat, swaddling may help...I know it seems odd but it works for me with one of my girls, and it keeps their business contained.  Another strategy is to nurse when they are very, maybe try after a nap.  HTH!
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