human milk does not suddenly turn to water after a certain length of time! Mothers can nurse their babies for as long as both they and their children wish to continue. Children will wean all by themselves when they are developmentally ready to do so.
Your milk continues to provide both food and health benefits even after your baby has begun to eat other foods. In fact, it continues to be the most important part of your baby’s diet until he is about a year old. Doctors recommends that babies continue to nurse until they are at least a year old and that the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends continuing to nurse for at least two years.
Weaning is a process, not an event!
As he gets older, your baby will gradually eat more table foods. You will notice that he needs to nurse less frequently or for shorter periods of time. However, babies nurse for many reasons besides the need for food. Even when he becomes a toddler, your baby may still need to nurse when it’s time to go to sleep.
There will also be days when he needs to nurse more than usual: perhaps when he is teething or coming down with a cold. Nursing can help him cope with these upsets as he progresses in natural weaning, your little one will be too busy exploring the world to nurse as often.
Remember, you can always get a second opinion!
Start by substituting a bottle for one nursing a day for about a week. Keep your baby’s favorite nursing sessions for the last. Follow your baby’s lead as much as possible. For example, if he is sick, you may want to nurse a little more often until he is feeling better again. Unless there is an urgent reason for immediate weaning, it is easier on both of you to go slowly.
Remember, you know your baby best, and you know what is best for your family. Trust your instincts, and you won’t go far wrong