Question: My baby dislikes milk. How can I make her like milk and gain weight?
Answer: There are many reasons why your baby may start to refuse milk. Common reasons include the following:
- Incorrect teat size. Your baby might be ready for a teat with a larger hole and is getting frustrated with the old teat.
- If your baby is already started on solids, she may be too full to take her milk. Try offering her milk 2-3 hours after her meal. Some babies simply prefer solids to milk. She can still get her nutrients from solids and gain weight.
- Your baby may be unwell. If there are ulcers or thrush in her mouth or she has a viral infection, her appetite may transiently be affected. You should bring her to see her paediatrician.
If your baby has a hearty appetite for food but refuses her milk, do not worry. Try offering her milk before her meal. Try offering ‘milk alternatives’ like yoghurt and cheese. If she has very poor milk intake, offer more fluids after solids to ensure she is adequately hydrated. Most importantly, monitor her weight gain and bring her to see her paediatrician if she is not gaining weight appropriately.
Dr Goh Siok Ying