Six Reasons Why Your Baby May Be Refusing to Breastfeed


Although breastfeeding is a delightful and happy experience, there are some difficulties. Newborns can struggle with latching on and learning how to nurse, and it is also possible for older babies who have been successfully breastfeeding for weeks or months to suddenly cease. 

Be patient and, if necessary, seek assistance if you find yourself in either of these distressing predicaments. There is always a good reason why your baby refuses your breastmilk and finding out why it is the way to go as stated in the Yamo Baby Blog. Consult your pediatrician or a lactation consultant for help and support if you are breastfeeding. You should be able to find a solution and continue breastfeeding the majority of the time.

Your Newborn May Be Premature

If your baby was delivered early and needs to remain in the hospital, you might not be able to nurse him or her. Then, once your little one can breastfeed, it may take a while to get the nursing session started. 

Your premature infant may not be able to latch on to your breast until they have grown a bit more and have mouths that are larger enough to accommodate them. Also, premature babies have less energy for breastfeeding, so it may seem as though he won’t breastfeed, but it’s possible that he just isn’t able to tolerate it yet. 

Premature babies have less energy than full-term babies. In the interim, you can offer your premature infant breast milk that has been pumped until he is big enough and has the stamina to nurse from you directly.

Inadequate or Ineffective Latch

The term “latch” refers to how your infant’s mouth adheres to your breast while she is nursing. If your newborn is having trouble latching on, her sucking motion won’t be as successful, and she won’t be able to get milk from your breast. 

Breastfeeding will become progressively more challenging for you and your infant as their hunger and frustration levels rise, and it is possible that they could eventually refuse the breast altogether. 

Get assistance with the latch as soon as possible to prevent problems with breastfeeding that are caused by a weak latch. When your infant is successfully nursing from you, she will put your entire nipple and a good portion of your areola, which is the dark area that surrounds your nipple, into the baby’s mouth.

Your Milk’s Flow Rate

The majority of new moms experience a consistent flow of milk production during the first two weeks after giving birth. As a result, the infant won’t have to exert much effort to suck to consume sufficient amounts of milk. However, once the current is established, the infant might become reluctant to nurse because it might have to latch on for a longer period to obtain the same quantity of milk. 

If you notice that the baby feeds for a few minutes, then stops, and appears furious, the baby’s reaction may be because your flow has slowed down. When they are nursing, you could try giving the breast a light squeeze or moving to the opposite chest to see if that helps. 

To assist in the process of draining the milk ducts, move your hands to various places of the breast while the child is sucking.

You Have Inverted or Flat Nipples

The majority of infants can successfully nurse even with their nipples flat or turned upside down. However, there are some instances in which it is difficult for the infant to successfully latch onto the mother’s breast. 

If your newborn is having trouble latching on and you suspect it may be due to your nipples, there are a lot of things you can do to properly fix flat or inverted nipples and make it possible for you to breastfeed again. 

Before you begin breastfeeding, it may help to draw your nipples out and make it simpler for your child to latch on if you use a breast pump or engage in other activities that stimulate your breasts.

There Is a Birth Defect or Impairment in the Child

If your newborn has suffered injuries during the labor and delivery process, such as a fractured shoulder or bruises, it is possible that he will not be able to feel comfortable enough to breastfeed. 

Additionally, newborns who are born with neurological or physical disabilities may not be able to breastfeed or may refuse to do so. Once your baby has been diagnosed with an injury or disability, you and the healthcare team will work together to determine the accommodations that your child requires to begin breastfeeding. These accommodations may vary depending on the severity of the injury or disability.

Your Infant Is Sleepy

It’s common knowledge that newborns spend a lot of time sleeping, but the labor and delivery process, as well as any drugs that were administered to you during delivery, might make your baby sleep even more than usual. 

It’s possible that jaundice or other disorders could have the same impact. And it goes without saying that if your child is sleeping, you will not be able to breastfeed them. To rouse your infant, you can try rubbing her feet or back, unwrapping her, or changing her diaper immediately before or when she is being fed. 

Maintain the effort of putting the infant to the breast as frequently as you can. Because sleepiness doesn’t tend to stick around for very long, we should feel very fortunate.

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Other Causes Why Your Baby May Be Refusing to Breastfeed

Your Infant Does Not Feel Well

It could be because of a cold, an ear infection, stuffy nose, upset stomach, injury, teething, thrush, a cold sore, or any number of other possible causes.

Your Infant Could be Upset

It’s possible that the breastfeeding routine has undergone a significant shift, that you and your baby have been separated for an extended period, or that your baby is being exposed to an uncomfortable atmosphere.


The baby may get fussy and have trouble nursing if they are overstimulated, their feedings are delayed, or they are apart from you for an extended period. It’s possible that if you have a severe reaction to being bitten while breastfeeding, it will have the same impact. Sometimes a baby is just unable to breastfeed because they are too distracted.

Unusual Tastes or Odors

If you recently changed your soap, perfume, lotion, or deodorant, it’s possible that your baby will become less interested in nursing as a result.

Reduced Milk Production

It is possible that your milk production can decrease if you frequently use a pacifier or supplement with formula.

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Weaning a baby off of breastfeeding on their own is a very unusual occurrence. Your child may be experiencing what is known as a nursing strike if all of a sudden, they are showing signs of reluctance to breastfeed. It is a sign that your baby has noticed something different, though this does not necessarily mean that something is wrong. Don’t let it bother you; it’s not personal. Offer reassurance to your child and continue to breastfeed him or her. Soon enough, your newborn will want to start nursing again.