What to Do When You Stop Breastfeeding: 7 Expert Tips You Need to Know Now

Stopping breastfeeding can be a difficult and emotional experience for both mother and child. However, it’s a natural process that every mother goes through. Once the decision to stop breastfeeding has been made, it is important to gradually reduce the frequency of breastfeeding. This helps your body adjust to the changes and can prevent engorgement and other pain or discomfort.

It is essential to keep your breasts as comfortable as possible while your body transitions to not breastfeeding. This can be done through warm or cold compresses and wearing a well-fitting and supportive bra. However, don’t wear overly tight bras, as they can lead to more discomfort.

As you adjust, be prepared for the possibility of engorgement, which can be very uncomfortable. If this happens, try hand-expressing or using a breast pump to remove some of the milk and reduce the pressure. Eventually, your body will adjust to the new reality, and your milk supply will decrease.

What to do When you Stop Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding is a beautiful experience that creates a special bond between a mother and her child. It’s a natural process with many benefits for both you and your baby. However, there comes a time when you decide to stop breastfeeding your child. This can be emotional, and it is normal to wonder what to do when you stop breastfeeding. One of the most common questions is, “When will my body stop producing milk?”.

The timing of when your body stops producing milk varies from person to person. It can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks for your milk to dry up completely. Here are a few things to consider:

  1. Medical Reasons: Medical reasons like hormonal problems can affect the timing of milk cessation. Some women may experience milk release even a year or more after stopping breastfeeding.
  2. Duration of Breastfeeding: The longer you breastfeed, the longer it will take for your milk to dry up completely. This is because your body is used to producing milk and needs time to adjust to the change.
  3. Weaning Gradually: Weaning your baby gradually can help your body adjust to the change and prevent engorgement. If you stop breastfeeding suddenly, you may experience discomfort and swelling in your breasts.
  4. Comfort Measures: Use comfortable bras, avoid nipple stimulation, apply cold compresses, or take over-the-counter pain relievers to help with engorgement or discomfort.

It’s also important to remember that stopping breastfeeding is a personal choice, and it’s okay to feel emotional about it. Speak with a lactation consultant or your healthcare provider for additional advice and guidance during this transition. In conclusion, being mindful of your body and taking good care of yourself during this process can make it a smoother experience.

Tips for managing breast engorgement and pain

When you stop breastfeeding, you might experience engorgement, which can be uncomfortable. Here are a few tips to help manage breast engorgement and pain:

  1. Hand express a small amount of milk: Gently express a small amount of milk to relieve the pressure and make it more comfortable. Once you feel a little relief, stop expressing milk. Do not express too much, as this can stimulate milk production and make the engorgement worse.
  2. Apply a warm compress: A warm compress or a warm shower can help increase blood flow to the breasts, which can help reduce the pain caused by engorgement. A warm compress can also help with let-downs, making it easier to express milk.
  3. Use a cold compress: A cold compress can help reduce swelling and inflammation associated with engorgement. Apply a cold compress for 15 to 20 minutes at a time, several times per day.
  4. Wear a supportive bra: A good, supportive bra can help reduce the discomfort caused by engorgement. Look for a bra that is comfortable and supportive. Avoid bras with underwires, as they can put pressure on the breasts and make the engorgement worse.
  5. Take a pain reliever: If the pain is severe, you can take an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

Remember, engorgement is temporary and will typically go away after a few days. If you are experiencing severe engorgement or pain, or if you have other concerns, consult with your doctor or a lactation consultant.

How to minimize the emotional impact of stopping breastfeeding

Breastfeeding is an intensely emotional experience for many mothers. When the time comes to stop breastfeeding, it can be challenging to navigate the mix of feelings that an individual may encounter. Whether stopping by choice, necessity, or a combination of the two, it’s essential to take steps to minimize the emotional impact and ensure a smooth transition. Here are some tips for how to minimize the emotional impact of stopping breastfeeding:

  1. Acknowledge your emotions

Stopping breastfeeding can trigger a range of emotions, and it’s important to recognize and acknowledge them. You might experience grief, guilt, relief, or a sense of loss. Whatever you’re feeling is valid, and it’s crucial to give yourself time and space to process your emotions.

  1. Don’t rush the process.

It’s essential not to rush the process of stopping breastfeeding. Your body needs time to adjust, and it’s common to experience engorgement, leakiness, or discomfort while you transition. Try to gently wean your baby, reducing the number of feeds over several weeks. This way, both you and your baby have time to adapt to the changes.

  1. Maintain closeness

Breastfeeding provides a unique bonding experience for mother and child. However, once you stop breastfeeding, it’s essential to maintain that sense of closeness. You might want to consider baby-wearing, skin-to-skin contact, or finding other ways to connect with your little one.

  1. Seek support

Stopping breastfeeding can be challenging, and it’s crucial to seek support from loved ones or medical professionals. A lactation consultant or counselor can help with the transition and provide emotional support.

In conclusion, stopping breastfeeding can be an emotional and challenging experience. It’s essential to take time, acknowledge your feelings, and seek support when necessary. By implementing these steps, you can minimize the emotional impact of stopping breastfeeding and ensure a smooth transition for both you and your baby.


Stopping breastfeeding can be an emotional experience for both mother and baby. As you transition to a new phase of feeding, it is important to take care of yourself and your baby’s needs. Here are some suggestions for what to do when you stop breastfeeding:

  1. Gradually wean your baby: Abruptly stopping breastfeeding can cause discomfort for both you and your baby. Gradually reducing the frequency of feeds over a period of weeks can help ease the transition and allow your body to gradually adjust to the change.
  2. Use comfort measures: Engorgement, soreness, and discomfort are common when you stop breastfeeding. Using cold compresses, pain relief medication, and supportive bras can provide relief and help your body adjust.
  3. Reconnect with your baby: Feeding is an important bonding experience between mother and baby. As you stop breastfeeding, find ways to continue bonding with your little ones, such as through skin-to-skin contact, snuggles, and playtime.
  4. Seek support: Transitions can be challenging, and you do not need to go through this alone. Reach out to breastfeeding support groups, lactation consultants, and your healthcare provider for guidance and support.

Remember, stopping breastfeeding is a personal decision, and there is no right or wrong way to do it. Taking care of yourself and your baby should always be your top priority.