The most important thing to take care of for a newborn is that they get enough nutrition. Considering most babies are breastfed, and don’t consume any other supplements until they are at least 6 months old, how do you ensure that they are getting enough breast milk?
After all, your breast milk isn’t given out in bottled or measured doses, so you’ll never know exactly how much your little one is being fed. You end up wishing your little one could speak so that they could indicate to you when they’re full.
It turns out that actually, your baby is showing signs about their appetite all the time. Read on to know how babies indicate their appetite levels:
1. Check the baby’s weight regularly
A baby’s weight is the first indicator of whether s/he is getting enough food or not. Ideally, your baby should regain their birth weight between 10 to 14 days after they’re born, and after that, have a steady weight gain of about one ounce (28 grams) per day for the next several months.
Remember that babies lose 5 to 10% of their birth weight in the first week. After you’ve left the hospital, schedule routine weight checks with your paediatrician to make sure you are on track.
2. Keep a tab on the baby’s poop
Babies often poop with each breast feed, which means around 12 stools on average. This means that your baby should produce around 6 to 8 pale, colourless nappies and between 2 to 5 seedy, loose, mustard-yellow stools, which are breast milk stools. This is an indication of normal breastfeeding digestion. By 2 months, though, your baby’s stools will be less frequent and may happen less than once a day.
3. Check your baby’s mood
Just like adults get tired after a huge meal, so do kids. After feeding, your baby needs to appear full, content and satisfied. Sometimes, your baby may even drift off to sleep. Burping or less enthusiastic sucking at the end are also indication that your baby has fed well.
4. Check for signs on your body too
Your breast’s texture can often also tell you whether your baby is feeding adequately. After feeding, if your breasts remain soft, then your baby has fed well. If your breasts remain firm, then that might be a sign that your baby isn’t getting enough milk.
5. Keep an eye out for warning signs
There are usually telltale signs that your baby is being underfed. If your baby is being fussy or cries after being fed, feeds continuously for 45 minutes of longer, had dark coloured or strong smelling urine, then they might actually not be getting enough breast milk.
Note: Provide additional vitamin supplements if necessary. Although breast milk contains all the nutrition your baby needs, you might still need a few nutrients if they are found to be lacking in your breast milk. A few supplements like oral Vitamin D for the baby and vitamin B12 for the mom, but only after consultation with the doctor.
But moms, most importantly, remain calm and stay confident about your body’s ability to nourish your baby. With all this information in your hand, you can be better equipped to take on breastfeeding. If you face any of these breastfeeding problems, you can look here for the solutions.
Share this information with other moms - who knows, someone might be in desperate need of this information! :)