Nursing Too Often

7 Replies
bean - May 25

My 2 week old wants to nurse every hour. I spoke with a nurse from my obgyn yesterday and she said at 2 weeks the baby should eat every 2 to 3 hours. The nurse said let the baby fuss, but my little one is hungry! She only eats for about 6 minutes (I have a fast letdown) and then falls asleep, but she has to do it every hour on the hour. Is this ok? I'm looking for some stories or encouragement. Nights she goes 2 to 3 hours at a stretch and nurses for longer, but days she's more of a snacker (perhaps fast metabolism?).

 

BeckyM - May 25

I don't think there is a problem with feeding her that frequently. My daughter likes to eat every 1-2 hours during the day but she sleeps through the night. I think babies are different, just like adults. I have to snack continually throughout the day, but I know other people who don't. As long as she is gaining 4-7 oz. per week and she's having enough wet and dirty diapers, I think she is fine. Her tummy is still very small, and eventually she will be able to hold more in it for longer, but she's just not there yet.

 

angie m - May 25

My first would want to nurse every 30 min. during the day and every hour at night. It was very hard on me and his dad but did get better when he was about 4 months. He was only 5lb. 6oz. at birth and I think he needed to but on the weight. He gained 3lbs. or more every month for the first 4 months. Every baby is diffrent and you know yours best. I just could never let mine fuss if I know I could nurse them and make them feel better. Good luck.

 

bean - May 25

Thanks ladies! My daughter was 2 weeks "late" and only 6lbs 12 oz - she left the hospital at 6lbs 2 oz. So I think it is just that she's little and needs to eat more often. I have a fast metabolism, so I a__sume she does too. I think I'd prefer to go with instinct rather than dct's advice... thanks!

 

Heather F - May 25

I read that letting them "snack" like this could prevent the baby from getting enough of the hind milk that is rich in calories, because they are not sucking long enough to get it, I am in the same vicious cycle with my 11 week old and I am following the plan in the book called "baby wise" to fix it so she consistenly gets hind milk and therefore gains weight like she should.

 

Jamie - May 26

For the first 6 weeks, it is perfectly normal for your infant to nurse constantly. This builds your milk supply. If you're worried about a foremilk / hindmilk inbalance, pump off some of the foremilk before you nurse. You can tell if there is an inbalance by the color of your daughter's poo - if it's yellow and seedy, she's getting enough hindmilk. If it's green, she's getting too much foremilk. If there's no inbalance, just let the baby nurse at will. Invest in a sling - it will allow you to nurse hands-free, so that you're not tied to the couch or an armchair while your daughter gets much-needed mommy time. As your daughter gets bigger, and your milk supply becomes more established, she will naturally space out her feedings. It seems to me as though adults seem to forget it's not just the parents that are in a new situation - it's the baby, too. Newborns need more comfort than older infants, because they're going through severe culture shock. Your daughter had never so much as breathed oxygen until 2 weeks ago. She is clinging to the one thing that is familiar to her - you. Give her some time to figure out what's going on, and try to find ways to reduce the stress on you - i.e., get a sling for mobile nursing, have your partner do more of the work around the house, and spend as much time as you can just enjoying the feel of your baby in your arms...it will get better, and easier, and before you know it you will be wondering where the time went, and how your angel got to be so big.

 

bean - May 26

Jamie -thank you so much. I hadn't heard about the color of poo determining if she's getting the right kind of milk. It seems that right after I wrote this posting my milk came in "again" if that's possible. I was very engorged all last night and had to pump to get the flow started. Now my milk is much thicker and darker in color (darker white) than the watered down stuff I had before. My little angel started eating every 2 hours on her own. Seems like before perhaps my milk just wasn't rich enough. This is all so new to me. I really appreciate everyone's advice. I read all the books, but none seem to cover details like this... thanks again!

 

LauraS - May 30

When I was b___stfeeding my second baby she wanted to b___stfeed all the time at first. You are lucky that your little one only stays on for a few minutes sometimes, mine would nurse for 3 out of 4 hours. I nursed on demand and never questioned the baby's need to eat. Breast milk empties out of the tummy faster and your baby is also nursing a lot because she is stimulating your milk supply so that it will keep up with her as she gains weight. Breastfeeding is very tough the first few weeks and it does seem like that's all you do sometimes but it will pay-off tenfold in the very near future so stick with it. I promise it will get better soon. Good luck!

 

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