How long to breastfeed the next time around?

Posted on: Wed, 12/18/2002 - 4:34am
nicoleg's picture
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Joined: 03/30/2001 - 09:00

I have one child, a son who is PA. DH and I are planning to have another child soon. I nursed DS for 4 months and weaned during the 5th month. I've heard that they advise nursing exclusively at least 6 months, but a year is better. Quite honestly, I don't want to nurse for a full year. I had planned on nursing the first time for 6 months, but even quite early then. Of course, I will do whatever's best for my child now that I now about the connection between bf and pa. I'm just wondering how many/if any of you did not nurse your subsequent child/children or weaned before a year. Did you do this even though you're first one was pa? Or did pa cause you to nurse longer than you would have?
NicoleG

Posted on: Wed, 12/18/2002 - 4:44am
Claire's picture
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Joined: 04/19/2000 - 09:00

Well I never breastfed any of my 3 kids. first one allergic to nuts,second allergic to cats,third nothing so far. I also know of a lady that breastfed for an entire 2 years and is now going through allergy things with both of hers. My grandmother nursed both of her boys and they have terrible allergies.
I don't think that there is anything wrong with breastfeeding however I hate when people will tell me if i did Chris wouldn't have had allergies.
I know many allergic people that were nursed. I don't think weather you go five months or 1 year will make a difference. My nephew was breasfed for a year,and is on allergic medications. She is the same one that told me I was wrong not to nurse. Best of luck with your choices.Best of luck with your new baby. claire

Posted on: Wed, 12/18/2002 - 7:23am
California Mom's picture
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Joined: 07/14/2000 - 09:00

I breastfed my daughter for 2 years, and she is allergic to peanuts and tree nuts. My 2 1/2 year old son (second child) weaned himself at 10 months. (No sign of allergies with him, but we haven't tried peanuts or nuts yet.) I think you should breastfeed as long as you feel comfortable. If you can go six months: great. If not, I'm sure you will not be harming your child.
I was breast fed, myself, for 8 months, and I am allergic to 2 anti-biotics and have environmental allergies. I think the main thing is that while you do breastfeed you should (obviously) not eat any nuts or peanuts so your baby does not get exposed that way. Good luck! Miriam

Posted on: Wed, 12/18/2002 - 7:57am
becca's picture
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Joined: 05/22/2001 - 09:00

Well, I breastfed for 21 months, exclusively(no solids until 5-6 months except a brief trial of rice a 4.5 months). Dd had dairy allergies, manifested through my milk, but outgrew without any real issues, now has peanut and egg allergies.
I think whatever amount you can do will benefit your child's overall immune system, but will not change genetices and a prediposition for allergies. I think delaying solids(until 6 months),delaying highly allergic foods until 3-5 years, and introducing foods carefully, slowly and with minimal processing is probably more critical. I would also just carefully wean to formula(when you decide you need to) and watch for tolerance, and that way(by doing it gradually) you can watch for any allergies there as well.
Best wishes. Becca

Posted on: Wed, 12/18/2002 - 8:00am
cynde's picture
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Joined: 12/10/2002 - 09:00

Breastfeeding as long as you can is important for the child for many reasons other than allergies, and is also better for the mother. That said, do what feels right for you. I breast fed my son for 11 months and he is allergic to tons of stuff.

Posted on: Wed, 12/18/2002 - 1:39pm
JacquelineL-B's picture
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Joined: 02/14/2002 - 09:00

We extended nursed until ds was two and a half. Frankly, with his multiple allergies, I think breastfeeding saved his life. (I have yet to see a formula free of milk, wheat, soy, corn, eggs, poultry, fish, tree nuts and peanuts.) I ate his diet once he was four months old as he was already having reactions and we had a RAST done at that time. He started solids late, around thirteen months, but has thankfully never had growth problems. All his allergies scare me...I have few desires for another biological child. I think you're brave to be planning another!
(I found La Leache League a great information source on breastfeeding. They have a medical database, maybe they've published studies on breastfeeding and allergies.)

Posted on: Wed, 12/18/2002 - 10:23pm
AJSMAMA's picture
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Joined: 06/12/2002 - 09:00

I bf my son for two years and he has peanut and tree nut allergies. No environmental allergies and has never had an ear infection, serious illness, etc... You should only bf for as long as you feel comfortable. I have four sisters and we were all bf for over two years a piece and none of us have ANY allergies to food. My three nieces and nephews were also bf for over two years a piece and they don't have any food allergies either. I honestly haven't seen enough data (related to allergies) to sway me from bf my future children for as long as my first. Also, we can't forget about all of the other values of extended breastfeeding such as reduced risk of cancer for mom and baby.
Jaime

Posted on: Wed, 12/18/2002 - 10:34pm
Going Nuts's picture
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Joined: 10/04/2001 - 09:00

First son - BF for 2 years, food allergies as a baby, all outgrown. EA's and asthma.
Second son - BF for 2 1/2 years, PA, TNA, Sesame and Chick Peas. EA's and asthma.
Whether or not breastfeeding had any affect on all this, we'll never know. My kids certainly come by all their allergies naturally - DH, myself and grandparents are all terribly allergic people. BTW, DH and I were not breastfed. DH has some EA's, but I'm a holy mess. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/rolleyes.gif[/img]
Anyway, do what feels right for you. Just don't eat the really high risk foods while breastfeeding - peanuts, tree nuts, shellfish. The data changes daily so do what fits your family.
Amy

Posted on: Wed, 12/18/2002 - 11:31pm
Heather2's picture
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Joined: 09/25/2001 - 09:00

I breast fed my first son for 6 months but I also ate pb during that time. He's allergic to peanuts and tree nuts. Now son #2 is 6 months old and I'm still breast feeding him but not eating any peanuts, tree nuts, fish or shellfish at the advice of the allergist. Both the allergist and the pediatrician told me in order to give my son his best shot at being allergy free, I should breast feed him for a year and watch my diet. I like the convenience of breast feeding and really like the cost savings!
[This message has been edited by Heather2 (edited December 19, 2002).]

Posted on: Thu, 12/19/2002 - 12:44am
kcmom's picture
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Joined: 12/18/2001 - 09:00

I breastfed dd for a full year and she weaned herself. I am convinced she has PA because I breastfed and ate a lot of peanuts and peanut butter. BUT, I am also convinced it has kept her very healthy otherwise. She is now 26 months and has been sick twice in her life. At 16 months she got sick for the first time, that was pretty bad, double ear infection with 105 degree fever, but she recovered nicely and has not other ear infections. The second time was a very mild cold that was basically just a runny nose for a few days, didn't even seem to affect her at all.
I will definetly breastfeed our next child too. The PA scares me but I will be watching my diet VERY closley next time. I just feel that yes she has allergies, but she is so healthy otherwise, it makes it worth it. And I also just loved the bonding I think it created between us!!
I agree with others, you nurse as long as you are comfortable with it! It's your body.
[img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/biggrin.gif[/img]
kcmom

Posted on: Thu, 12/19/2002 - 7:15am
happyland's picture
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Joined: 12/10/2002 - 09:00

I (also my husband) have been observing from a far for a while. This is a wonderful blessing to have this community here. Thanks to everyone who shares their experiences and resources.
My son (2 yro) who is walnut and PA, was breastfeed for 7 months (self weaned), and had his first reaction at 15months. He was SSOOOOO gassy as a baby, and now we believe it was due to ALL the peanut products I digested. I just wish I had none that I was in fact introducing him to this allergan through my breast milk. I am now nursing our second child, who is 4 months (tomorrow) and has a milk allergy. So I am avoiding all nuts, tree nuts, shellfish, obviously all dairy. We occasionally feed my daughter with formula, just in case, anything was ever to happen to my 'supply', and I could not bf her. She has taken well to the allumentum (incorrect spelling). Hopefully she will outgrow it.
Now that I have broken my silence, I will contribute more in the future. We are still just learning SSOOOO much and collecting valuable data.
Season's Greetings to all. May you and your families stay healthy always and in all ways.
PC

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