What Is Breastfeeding Agitation?

April 21, 2018

Breastfeeding agitation is one of the problems that can appear while nursing.

It’s when the mother experiences anguish during breastfeeding and may even reject breastfeeding her baby altogether.

Breastfeeding agitation means that the mother has a huge sense of guilt about her need to stop breastfeeding the baby.

It’s considered one of the most negative situations that a mother can suffer, since it’s an irrational feeling.

This happens because the mother feels an overwhelming urge to immediately stop breastfeeding.

In other cases, it occurs because breastfeeding becomes an uncomfortable act, generally when practicing tandem breastfeeding.

However, with the right support and commitment, this challenge can be overcome.

Why does breastfeeding agitation happen?

Although there are many theories, whatever triggers an aversion to breastfeeding hasn’t yet been proven.

What’s certain is that unwanted thoughts and emotions arise mainly when the baby clings to the mother’s chest in an anxious way.

Usually, these feelings disappear when the child stops breastfeeding.

8 tips to combat breastfeeding agitation

Practicing the following tips will help you combat breastfeeding agitation.

1. Look for distractions

Most mothers who have experienced this situation before say that being distracted is the most important thing to overcome this bump in the road. 

This situation cannot get the best of you. Therefore, you should try to think about other things.

You need to keep your mind occupied and clear to remove some of the heft of the matter.

2. Try to get plenty of rest.

You should get as much sleep and rest as possible during this period. Fatigue can worsen one’s aversion to breastfeeding.

In these moments, you must pay attention to your health and take care of yourself. Take the opportunity to rest whenever the baby allows it.

What Is Breastfeeding Agitation?

3. Avoid stressful situations

You must avoid any type of situation that causes you stress. It’s a complicated moment for you in which you must, above all, remain calm.

Controlling the stress caused by this situation will improve your emotional state.

Becoming better organized, such as planning for the week ahead, will help you avoid any situation that can get out of control.

4. Eat and drink correctly

Don’t skip meals, no matter how busy you get with your baby. Also, it’s just as important for you to be well hydrated. Drink lots of water and cold drinks.

5. Don’t practice tandem breastfeeding

If you practice tandem breastfeeding, we recommend not breastfeeding your two little ones at the same time.

Your anguish may increase if you breastfeed simultaneously.

6. Consider weaning

In a way, breastfeeding agitation can be a completely normal response to the pain that breastfeeding your baby can cause.

Changing hormones can prepare your body to give signs that it’s time to wean your child. 

If you think that the right time has arrived, you can consult with a specialist about how to do it gradually. 

7. Normalize the situation

You must normalize the situation and translate this initial guilt into a positive outlook. You’re neither the first nor the last mom to suffer from this sensation.

Of course, you’re not a bad mother because you want to be done with breastfeeding. 

What Is Breastfeeding Agitation?

8. Share your experience

First of all, it’s time for you to share your experience with your partner and not retain this feeling of guilt inside you.

It’s very important for you to externalize your emotions to your close friends and family so they can understand how you feel and thus give you their point of view.

It’s also helpful for you to talk to other mothers so that you know whether they’ve suffered this situation and can offer solutions that may help you.

As always, having a conversation with a health professional will be very helpful.

Try to face this situation as a challenge that you’re able to overcome.

Maintaining a positive attitude, being distracted and having the support of your family will make it possible for you to face this situation.