For the past 3-4 days, my six month old completely refuses to drink milk when he's awake. He had been drinking milk fine previously and as far as I can think nothing (type, quantity, his routine etc.) has changed.

The crazy part is that he drinks milk fine when he wakes up during the middle of the night (probably coz he's tired and half-asleep), but during the day its a big NO.

He is perfectly OK when eating cereal and seems to want more and more of it, but wouldn't even get near the milk.

I am fairly concerned about this. Could this be just a phase? Have other parents experienced this?

asked 16 Feb '10, 02:11

Umsd's gravatar image

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edited 25 Sep '12, 11:19

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Tammy ♦♦

I assume you are referring to Formula and not breastfeeding?

(16 Feb '10, 02:14) Tammy ♦♦

When our daughter first started teething she would often refuse the bottle for some feeds, especially when she had been eating solid food. I recall the public health nurse stating that some babies prefer solids when teething and some prefer milk versus solids when teething.

There are some other suggestions at Here is a paragraph from the article:

If your baby usually has only milk and refuses it (or if he has milk and solids but is refusing to eat or drink either), then it may be a sign of illness or discomfort. Common causes are colds, viral infections, ear and throat infections (which can make sucking painful), and oral thrush. All of these conditions are easily treated, but if a young baby refuses two consecutive feeds, it is important to get advice from your doctor or health visitor. You could try giving your baby a drink of cooled boiled water, which will help to maintain hydration, but still seek advice as to why he is refusing milk.


answered 16 Feb '10, 02:21

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Tammy ♦♦
accept rate: 18%


I found the exact same thing when my lad was teething for the first time. He didn't have any interest in his formula. I started offering him diluted cordial to drink and mixed formula in with baby porridge whilst his discomfort passed.

(16 Feb '10, 21:05) Rick

my baby Jason is 4 months old and will pretty much only take a bottle in the sleepy state. When he is awake and alert he will back arch and take only a few sips. It is hard to feed him, but this is the only way he will take it. He is on Prevacid but that does not seem to help his behavior.


answered 12 Mar '10, 02:03

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I had the EXACT same problem with my son. He is 7 months old now, but we started solid foods when he was 5 months and shortly thereafter he REFUSED to drink his bottle. He would push the nipple out of his mouth the second it hit his tongue and would even gag if the milk hit his tongue!

Just like your son, he also had no problem taking his bottle in the middle of the night. In fact, because he wasn't drinking anything during the day her required MORE at night.

I came to this site and asked this question and realized that it was just a phase. He preferred the taste of his solid foods and was bored of the bottle. I got helpful hints on what to do to make sure he was still getting his proper nutrition.

Sure enough, after about a week, he started taking his bottle again. Some days are better than others, but I find if I wait until he is so hungry he starts to whine for his bottle (instead of watching the time for when I think he should have his bottle), he accepted more. I still use this method. I always give him the bottle before the food.


answered 12 Mar '10, 13:02

DazedandConfused's gravatar image

accept rate: 13%

I also have this problem. My daughter is now almost 6 months old. she has a stuffy nose since last week and for 2 days high fever. since she had the fever she started refusing the bottle, only when she is half asleep (especially at night) she is drinking, at night even a greater amount. she ate solids when she had fever (Joghurt and Fruit glasses) but didn't wanted any drink. now the fever is gone, but she is refusing the bottle and also starts to refuse the solids. I try to offer her water in a cup or just give her a bottle with milk to play as she like to put everything in her mouth and in my hope that she drinks something, but no luck. Today she had one bottle (about 150 ml) in the morning around 11 am and a little bit of a fruit glass at around 3 pm. thats all until tonight 8 pm where we tried to giver her solids and bottle, but barely any luck. she just doesnt want anything, and she cries a lot more than usual. We went to the A&E on sunday because of her high fever and the doctor checked everything, ears, tummy, mouth and didn't find anything, he said it's just a cold. I'm worried now that she doesn't get enough fluid. any idea why she could be refusing everything?


answered 17 Mar '10, 21:41

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Hi Tanja,

You are more likely to get responses if you post a new question as people may not come back to view all the responses. The format of this website is question and answer versus discussion forum like many other websites.

(17 Mar '10, 21:46) Tammy ♦♦

I have the same problem with my daughter she is 5 months old(born 10/04/2012) it is so distressing and stressful to see her not taking in any milk . Before she used to drink 120ml every 2 hours now it is barely 30 ml . I started solids and she is taking organic rice cereal very well no complaints. Still I feel she needs to take more milk to be hydrated. She is on neocate due to her allergies and now she refuses to drink. I will be lucky if she finishes 120ml in one go....please advise what can I do to make her drink milk....when I try to feed her she plays with the bottle otherwise she is very healthy and weigh 8 kilos.


answered 06 Sep '12, 10:50

Felismummy's gravatar image

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@Felismummy Hopefully the other responses to this question are helpful to you.

(11 Sep '12, 13:22) Tammy ♦♦
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Asked: 16 Feb '10, 02:11

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Last updated: 25 Sep '12, 11:19