Feeding at a fixed time, feeding on demand? Among the headaches that young parents ask themselves, this one comes to the top of the list. It must be said that meals come back very often in a day. On average every 3 or 4 hours.
So should we wake up baby? Allow him to wake up alone? Let him sleep? In fact, it all depends on the method chosen. There are two ways to feed your baby:
- Give him the bottle
We therefore adapt the method to the way of feeding our baby.
When is it advisable to breastfeed at a fixed time?
It is advisable to space out feedings every 3 or 4 hours if you are feeding your baby. Respect a minimum of 2 hours between the start of each bottle. This rhythm will facilitate digestion.
Bottle-fed, a baby will adjust more easily than a breastfed child. He may ask for a larger quantity than that recommended even if it is advisable to follow the recommendations and doses prescribed by the pediatrician.
When is it advisable to breastfeed on demand?
If you choose to breastfeed, opt for on-demand operation. Watch your baby rather than your watch. If you feed at a fixed time, you will quickly run out of milk. Lactation works according to the law of supply and demand. The more the baby sucks and stimulates the breast by sucking, the more milk the mother produces.
The first three weeks of your child's life are therefore decisive. It is advisable to respond to and even anticipate baby's requests. Breastfeed at the first sign of wakefulness. If baby cries, feeding may be disturbed.
Objective: Feed baby on demand, without limiting the feeding time, without limiting the number of feedings in a day and without minimum interval between two feedings.
According to some specialists, limiting breastfeeding time could impact baby's weight gain and mother's milk production.
What are the signs that your baby is ready to suck?
During the first three weeks, it is advisable to feed on demand. You should be on the lookout for any signs of light sleep or calm wakefulness.
Baby is agitated, makes small faces, twists slightly, puts his fist in his mouth, makes slight facial expressions, lets appear small sucking movements, sticks out his tongue, turns his head, looks for the breast… he is surely ready to suckle. Now is the time to offer her the breast.
Video Credit: Bridget Teyler from Youtube