Breastfeeding Check-In

Mom nursing her babyYou’re well into your second month of breastfeeding, your baby should be growing and thriving, and you’re probably feeling pretty good about being baby’s sole source of nourishment. Let’s do a breastfeeding check-in to help you stay on track.

Feeding Schedules

Up to this point, you may have been feeding your baby on demand. Newborns need to eat when they need to eat, but at seven weeks, you can begin thinking about a consistent feeding schedule. At this age, babies typically nurse about six or seven times in a 24-hour period. Try to frontload your schedule and nurse every three hours, starting first thing in the morning. If you can get baby on board with the routine, you’ll suddenly start getting about six hours of sleep right through the night!

Milk for Days

At this point, you’re in full milk-making mode, and your baby may be feeding less often. Some moms find that their breasts are engorged a great deal of the time. Not only is this uncomfortable, but it can also lead to minor explosions of milk at the worst possible times. Don’t worry, though—your body is designed to make just the right amount of milk, and it will adjust to your baby’s needs before too long.

Growth Spurts

Right around this time, your baby is likely to hit a growth spurt, which will likely throw everything we mentioned above right out the window. You’ll know your little one is growing rapidly if he’s suddenly hungry all the time, wanting to nurse much more often than usual. Yes, he may even go back to feeding during the night—although he may sleep more than usual, too, and then wake up ravenous and mad about it.

Managing Flow

It’s still as important as ever to feed as evenly as possible from each breast, so that milk production stays even. Sometimes “mommy brain” makes us forget which breast we started with last time, so you might want to set up a simple reminder. Here are a few to consider:

  • Move a safety pin from one bra strap to the other each feeding session.
  • Wear a bracelet on the right or left wrist to show which side should nurse next.
  • If you have a special nursing spot, leave a burp cloth lying on the arm of your rocking chair to remind you which breast to feed from, or set your nursing pillow on the corresponding side of the couch.

Remember that all babies develop at their own special rates, so don’t worry if yours eats more or less often, or if he stays on a breast for five minutes or 30. Most of all, trust your baby and trust your body, to know what breastfeeding arrangement works best for both of you.

Research shows that easily accessible help from a knowledgeable, caring breastfeeding professional is a key factor in helping mothers meet their personal goals. Consider scheduling a lactation consultation by calling (813) 872-3932.