Welcome new moms! Welcome back old moms, there’s enough gist to go round or should we say milk?
“My baby is not suckling enough” is a common complaint that health care workers listen to. Babies are fragile beings, hence this and many more are some of the concerns mothers have about nursing a child.
Breast milk contains all the nutrients a baby needs for the 1st 6 months before transitioning into the human diet. For these initial 6 months, we want our babies to get all the nutrients they need in the right amount hence the question, ‘How much Milk is Enough?’.
Humans are wired differently and what works for your baby is most likely unique to your baby. Like adults who consume different quantities of food before getting filled, process and digest these foods at different rates, babies also consume different quantities of milk, process and digest it at different rates. Your baby’s growth is not entirely a function of how much they consume but other factors such as genetics, familial traits, metabolism rate which all come into play when growth is involved.
There’s no cemented rule as to what amount of milk is enough but bear in mind that every drop that can be squeezed into the day makes a whole lot of difference. As long as you put them to breast with the right technique whenever they call for it; more like every 2hrs in the first two months, while ensuring they swallow the milk which is heralded by the gobble sound, that’s enough. As they grow older, their appetite would grow and they can suckle for longer periods and less frequently.
Except there’s an underlying condition such as heart disease or respiratory infection which would hinder sucking adequately, babies are known to take just what they need.
Let the law of demand and supply take its cause while you take care of yourself. Empty both breasts simultaneously into your baby’s stomach and you can almost be certain the baby is getting enough. Instead of fretting, you can use the remaining time to ensure you stay in good shape and feed well.
Here are few signs you can look out for to ascertain if your baby is well-fed:
- A well-fed baby is a happy, energetic and restful baby.
- A well-fed baby gains weight appropriately, kindly use a growth chart.
- A well-fed baby passes a lot of pale urine, poops twice daily at the minimum which averages 6 diaper changes daily.
- A well-fed baby has great skin.
- A well-fed baby attains developmental milestones as at when due.
Breastfeeding so frequently might seem tedious, so you can store milk appropriately, use recommended cups and spoons to feed when next the baby calls for food, and ask for help from people around to achieve that purpose.
There’s no cap to their feeding, so don’t limit your baby. Give as much as you can when they want.
Keep doing a great job Mum.