Growth Spurts in Breastfed babies
All babies will have infant growth spurts or also called “frequency days”. Moms almost always think that they have a low milk supply during these growth spurt times because baby starts to drink right through the day and becomes very fussy.
Growth spurts can be very frustrating, but keep in mind that they are temporary and actually extremely essential in all growing babies development.
When are infant growth spurts most seen?
Growth spurts occur mostly during the first few days at home, at 2, 3 and 6 weeks and then again at 3, 6 months. These are just guidelines as some babies may have growth spurts during other times too. Newborn growth spurts are common and sometimes confused with colic.
Moms may notice toddler growth spurts as well.
What to expect during these growth spurts babys first year…
- Baby will begin to feed more frequently.
- Baby is fussier than usual with breastfeeding fussiness as well.
- Baby has a different sleep pattern than before, sometimes not sleeping at all.
- Infant growth spurts sleepiness – Some babies sleep a lot of the time during a growth spurt…moms shouldn’t worry about this, just let baby sleep. Read more on how to breastfeed a sleepy baby.
What moms can do to cope with growth spurts in babies
- Moms sometimes don’t know if baby has had enough to drink. Take a walk after a feeding, if baby is full he will fall asleep after being taken for a walk outside…but if he continues to cry he is most likely still hungry.
- Don’t panic, if you still feel that the problem may be low milk supply you can weigh baby before and after feedings, go to the clinic for this or get yourself a scale…some moms even use a kitchen mixing bowl scale if baby is small enough.
- Do not supplement! If you do this your body will start to produce less milk
- Carrying baby in a sling will make things much easier for you, as you can nurse hands free when baby is in a sling and also feed baby on demand
- Some moms feel quite weak during infant growth spurts ~ this is because your body is producing more milk for baby. Moms should listen to their bodies and drink and eat a little more during these times.
- Always remember that with a breastfeeding growth spurt your supply is determined by demand, so the more baby breastfeeds the more milk you will be producing.
How to know if it’s low milk supply or a growth spurt
The best thing to do is to just breastfeed baby whenever he demands it , this way your body will make sure that you produce more milk because the more you breastfeed, the more milk your body will make, that is if it is a low milk supply problem.
A baby growth spurt also never really lasts longer than a few days, if the breastfeeding problems continue longer than a week you should speak to a lactation consultant in connection with increasing your milk supply… here are some tips on increasing milk supply too
Also if your baby is still having wet and dirty diapers then it is usually a sign of a growth spurt and not low milk supply.
Other pages on “breastfeeding problems” in connection with baby growth spurts
- Growth spurts and crying ~ Reasons why babies cry
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