15 answers

My 7 Month Old Refuses to Drink from a Bottle All of the Sudden

Hi Moms- Any advice is appreciated. I took my 7 month old on a business trip with me and my parents watched her, but during the trip she refused to drink from a bottle and would only breastfeed or drink from a sippy cup (but even that was difficult and she didn't drink her usual amounts.) I thought it was because her routine was changed and she wasn't used to my parents; however, when I got her back to her regular routine she still refused to take the bottle. I thought it might be because she was teething. Has anyone experienced this same thing. I am worried that she is not going to get enough to eat. We have battled colic and gas and acid reflux and I was hoping we were on the path to normalcy :)

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks everyone for all your responses. She has been eating more food, so it was comforting to hear everyone tell me she wouldn't starve. I went ahead and tried the fast flow nipples, but she had already decided the sippy cup was the way to go, so she's back to drinking her milk, but with the sippy cup. Never a dull moment! Thanks again.

Featured Answers

Let her move on to the sippy, with a little practice she'll be doing just fine. Also she should be eating a variety of baby foods and cereals by now so I wouldn't worry about her getting enough. Both my boys went straight to sippy cups around 6 to 7 months (I breastfed as well) and they weaned themselves when they were ready. I wouldn't push her to keep taking the bottle, you'll have to take it away eventually anyway, let her decidee to give it up.

More Answers

A breastfed baby will not starve itself. That being said, there are so many reasons why. Routine, sour milk, the age...the list goes on. I went through similar experiences with my son. I found sippy cups were definetly the way to go instead of bottles. Nuby worked for us and best mimicked nursing. Big spout, control of flow. I wouldn't worry to much though. 7 months is still a tricky age, but she could have some solids and very small amouts of water. She won't starve even though its a scary situation to be in. As long as she is making up the smaller feedings with extra/longer nursing and still seems semi content try to relax. I remember being so freaked out when my son went 10 hours without anything more than 2 ounces. Here he is a 2 and thriving just fine. Good Luck S.!

Could easily be due to teething. Also, ear infections are a concern when teething and can cause the sudden hatred of drinking in infants....I'd suggest a dr's visit and some tylenol.

Good luck!

I breastfed both of my children as well and sometimes I also had to use bottles. Early on with my first a friend suggested that we use playtex bottles with liners and a big dome shaped nipple. She said that her doctor had told her that nursing babies accept the big dome shaped nipples better because they are shaped more like a mother's breast. I know that your daughter is young - but have you let her try drinking through a straw? I was quite surprised that both of my children enjoyed this and were able to master this skill at a very young age. Although, my son is 10 years old I still remember my grandmother letting him sip sprite at an Arby's when he was only about 6 months old. In some ways I panicked, we had planned to feed him breastmilk exclusively until he was a year old, but I was also amazed that he could drink from a straw so easily even though he was so young! You might go ahead and have the ears checked as has been previously suggested and it could be teething as well. Try the straw - you could still put breastmilk in the cup with the straw and see if she likes it. If she is teething she will probably chew on the straw. They make sipper cups with more durable straws.

We just went through this with my daughter (she'll be 9 months on the 1st). She was not drinking well at all from her bottle over the last month and a half, but was eating lots of baby food so I figured she wouldn't starve. But, I was concerned because I know she needs the nutrition of formula. Anyway, a couple weeks ago I got a faster flow, level 2 nipple for her bottles and now she's drinking them very quickly. Now we're concerned because she just wants to drink bottles and isn't eating much baby food. :)
But, if you haven't already try a faster flow nipple. Good luck!

You didn't say that you were feeding her actual food... Maybe it's time to start with some new textures. My little guy did the exact opposite and wouldn't eat any food only bottle and breastfeeding. It was due to teething. His sleep schedule was also disrupted at the same time. Fun stuff. Anyway, she can get plenty of nutrition from some fruits and veggies to fill in for what she isn't getting in the bottle. And you may be ahead of the curve having her only use a sippy cup already. Enjoy and Good luck!

You might wnat to take her to the MD for a check-up. This just happened to us and it was an ear infection. Now he is back to eating and sleeping well.

I think this is normal for some kids. My first son completely gave up the bottle at 9 months. I too breastfed him before work and in the evening. He essentially got all of his breastmilk early morning and throughout the night. It left me sleep deprived but he was getting plenty of nutrition and I didn't have the issue of weaning him from a bottle. Now my second son is 10 months and he is done with the bottle also. If you daughter is eating food and drinking water, she will get the breastmilk she needs from you in the evening. I wouldn't worry about it.

at 7 months she should be eating baby food. as long as shes eating babyfood i wouldnt worry some kids just get done with the bottle sooner than others.

Unless she's having dark, strong-smelling pee, isn't pooping, and/or is losing weight, it just may be a growth-lull and she doesn't need as much as before, especially if she's having baby food. They slow down a LOT on drinking when they start eating (usually around 6 mo). And if she's ready to 'wean' to a cup/sippy cup, why not go for it? Better early than waiting past their time of readiness and having to 'break' them from a bottle (much) later.

If anything is really 'wrong', though, my first guess (as an 'old' Mom/Grandmother) would be that she is either teething or she has an ear infection or sore throat. Might have her looked at . . .

all baby do that and a bottle feeding does hurt the baby teething ,they need something to put on or take some tydenol for the pain ,it does hurt when the baby is teething ,I have found this with my 2 grandsons due the time they were teething or sick with a cold. sometime you have to take the baby to the doctor and get the baby check out or check for fever. It also happened with dip cup also. MS

All four of my children preferred breast feeding to a bottle. They switched to a cup at different ages. Relax and just go with what our daughter prefers.

I'd have to agree with the 2 mothers who said to check the bottle nipple flow...which may be too slow...and also make sure she doesn't have an ear infection...which would make sucking painful. Good luck!

If she is drinking from a sippy cup, I wouldn't worry about actually using a bottle - many babies get kind of fed up with bottles at that age, and if she's able to use a sippy cup - there is not reason to keep her from using that. You may also consider that the sippy cup flows faster, and breastfeeding is much nicer than using a bottle - so, she may have developed a preference for breast and/or faster flow. Babies breastfeed rather efficiently (even at night), and will take more from the breast as they get older even with shorter feeding periods.
Just watch her weight/health and wet/dirty diapers and you can tell if she is getting enough. My daughter is 1yr and has almost been exclusively breastfed - she nurses a lot in the evenings and at night, and as soon as I started working again, she went from sleeping 10 straight hours, to waking almost every hour. Babies want to breastfeed - its more than just nutrition - so, they often prefer the breast over bottle, it's actually a rarer situation for them to prefer the bottle over the breast.
What if you express milk and put it in a bottle/sippy instead of forumla?

It doesn't take much to change their routine - the simple adjustment over the weekend could have changed her, and with more breastfeeding and mommy-closeness, she has discovered that this is more fun and she has changed to prefer that better. I have heard of many breastfed babies who will eat only about 8oz while mommy is gone, and then breastfeed a lot in the evenings and night to make up for it. This is very "normal" for a baby! There is really no right way a baby should be - and you also have to understand that breastfed babies are very different than formula-fed babies - they love their mommy time because that means comfort and love in addition to nutrition.
I would not worry as long as she seems healthy and is gaining appropriately with wet and dirty diapers (particularly wet diapers).

Let her move on to the sippy, with a little practice she'll be doing just fine. Also she should be eating a variety of baby foods and cereals by now so I wouldn't worry about her getting enough. Both my boys went straight to sippy cups around 6 to 7 months (I breastfed as well) and they weaned themselves when they were ready. I wouldn't push her to keep taking the bottle, you'll have to take it away eventually anyway, let her decidee to give it up.

Sounds like she doesn't like her bottles. Have you increased the nipple size so the flow is adequate? She might be frustrated that the flow is too slow. Breast milk flow is much greater than even the largest bottle nipple. Try and increase the flow and see if she takes to it again.

If not . . .

She will be fine with just nursing in the morning and evening and doing a sippy cup during the day. Congratulations on beginning the weaning process. In a few months you can begin introducing cows milk if you wish.

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