Feed Your Baby at Night

Dr. Daniel Weissbluth and the pediatricians at Weissbluth Pediatrics lead a new parent support group every Thursday at 1PM-  You can either come in person to our office in Chicago or Skype/FaceTime/Google Hangout in to join.  All families are welcome.  The practice is currently accepting new patients.

The below passage is an excerpt from Sleep Consult

Sometimes you might not be sure whether she is really hungry at night. She will suck at the breast or bottle when she is just fussy but not hungry because sucking is soothing.

There are three ways to tell if she is truly hungry at night:

  1. Pay attention to the suck-swallow pattern. A hungry baby sucks, fills up her mouth, and swallows so the pattern is suck-swallow, suck-swallow, suck-swallow, and so forth. A swallow usually follows almost every suck. A fussy baby in the middle of the night will have a different pattern: suck-suck-suck-swallow, suck-suck-suck-swallow. There will be many more sucks before each swallow.
  2. Offer a bottle immediately after breast-feeding in the middle of the night. Then, the well-fed breast-fed baby will not take much from the bottle. If your baby takes a small volume slowly, this tells you that you have sufficient breast milk and your baby is not hungry even though the baby wants to suck more at the breast. If your baby takes a large volume quickly, this tells you that your breast milk supply is low.
  3. Once, have Dad offer a bottle instead of Mom breast-feeding in the middle of the night. If your baby is truly hungry or thirsty, she will take a large volume quickly. If not, this tells you that your baby is up at night but not hungry.
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