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Q&A: Night feeding?

My daughter is just over a month old and still wakes up every hour crying and rooting. Could she really be hungry? Is there anything we can do to get her to sleep better?

Re: My daughter is just over a month old and still wakes up every hour crying and rooting. Could she really be hungry? Is there anything we can do to get her to sleep better?

The Bump Expert

We know how exhausting it is to feed every hour. The bad news is that month-old babies' stomachs are still very small -- approximately the size of your daughter's fist. Since they can't hold much, they often need to be filled up frequently. That Big Gulp of milk you wish she would eat just won't fit yet!

However, at this age you can gradually start to stretch the time between her feedings, with the goal of feeding her every three hours during the day and possibly even less frequently at night. In an ideal world, this will help her sleep in several three to four hour stretches at night.

Until she's old enough to sleep straight through the night, remember to take care of your sleep needs. The first three hours of nighttime sleep are the most critical for adults. Do everything you can to ensure this first part of your sleep is uninterrupted. This may mean going to bed at 8 or 9 p.m. for a few more months, but we promise that your days will be much more enjoyable!

sleep experts conner herman and kira ryan Conner Herman and Kira Ryan, cofounders of Dream Team Baby

re: Q: Night feeding?

Are you crazed? Don't stretch the time between feedings, if she's hungry, she's hungry... are you breastfeeding? If so make sure she's eating off of one breast until it's done b/c then she'll be getting the "hind mild" which will fill her up and make her good and sleepy too. Then she'll get solid sleep and wake again for another big, long feeding instead of short ones. If she's not breast-feeding you'll just have to keep feeding as often as she wants, she'll adjust at her own pace. Make sure you burp her lots though and then offer her food again after that since there might be more "room". :)

cherokee6 |

re: Q: Night feeding?

ps. I don't mean you are crazed only the advice previous to me ;)

cherokee6 |

re: Q: Night feeding?

Also, if you are breast feeding and are going crazy from lack of sleep (and feel like your daughter has gotten the latch "thing" down), you can supplement with the tiniest bit of formula before you put her down for the night. BF first, then give her an ounce or less of formula. That will help her stay full long enough for you to get some uninterrupted sleep (maybe two or three hours).

havin a peanut |

Q&A: Night feeding?

I'd seek advice from a lactation consultant. if you want to get her more full you could always pump early in the day and supplement with that bottle later if you feel your supply is low at night.

jessicaberry |

Q&A: Night feeding?

Night feedings are rough try just letting her suck on each breast for as long as she wants, laying on your side at night has worked for me when during those long, tiring night feedings

eidiva26 |

Q&A: Night feeding?

When we brought our baby home from the hospital she would fall asleep after eating from one side. I couldn't seem to get her awake enough to eat from the other side, so we'd put her back in her bassinet even though I knew she wasn't completely full. Of course, she's wake up an hour or two later hungry. At an OB followup visit we asked the nurse for any tips and she suggested doing a diaper change mid-feed. Once she falls asleep, change her diaper, which will wake her up again, then she's ready to continue to Part II of the feeding. She now sleeps for several hours at a time. Worth a try!

vrnovak |

Q&A: Night feeding?

If she's rooting, she really is hungry. My strategy with my 4 wo has been to pump earlier in the day and during one night feeding. My Husband feeds her her first night feeding with a bottle of pumped milk which helps her stay used to a bottle when I go back to work and she gets totally full with the bottle so she sleeps a few more hours and I am not stuck wondering if she is done eating when she takes a break on my boob.

mchug0380 |

Q&A: Night feeding?

mine did the same thing she was born jan. 5 2011 what i do and she will sleep for 4 hours at a time leave her in her swing after a feeding and changed diaper swaddled... she just may be a motion baby. and whn shes not moving she moves and the only thing she can do is cry and eat...

cokacola |

Q&A: Night feeding?

If you are breastfeeding first check your baby's latch again. Sometimes they are suckling but not actually drinking all that much. There should be gulping-pause-gulping sounds and you should see the entire back of the jaw move. I used a lactation consultant as well as looked up Dr. Jack Newman (a fantastic breastfeeding expert in Canada) on Google. He has a lot of fantastic advice and video clips on his website and you can view it all for free. Also, after the first three weeks, I switched from scheduled feedings (app every 3 hours) to on-demand feedings at night only. Another thing- if you aren't getting enough milk to the baby at each feeding you might want to gauge your per-feeding volume using a pump. That way you know how many ounces your baby is getting from each breast at each feed. I found out my left breast yielded less milk than my right one, so I started each feed with the left breast to stimulate that breast to produce more. I am now giving the same amount from each breast (app 2 ounces.) Also, I read that to know how much milk your baby needs you should multiply your baby's weight by 2.96 and that's how many ounces they need at each feeding. Oh- and I also take More Milk Plus supplements from motherlove. com. It COMPLETELY helps!!! GOOD LUCK - I know it's hard but it's only for a short time in your life!

NewYawkStawk |

Q&A: Night feeding?

Maybe she just needs a paci to suck on. Sucking is a natural calming/coping mechanism. Read The Happiest Baby on the Block for more happy, sleeping baby tricks (5 S's: swaddling, sucking, swinging, shhshing, and stomach/side position--not for sleeping, though!)

baleydyan |

Q&A: Night feeding?

Do not stretch the time between feedings. That is just cruel! Rooting is her innate way of showing hunger so do not deny the baby nourishment just to get a little sleep. She will gradually begin to eat more as her stomach grows in size. At a certain point your pediatrician may even allow you to add rice cereal to a bottle. Our son needed this to help with reflux problems. I hope this helps. My advice....feed on demand....sleep later!

alarche |

Q&A: Night feeding?

she could just be going through a growth spurt which is common at 4 weeks and 6 weeks.

veronicaratliff |

Q&A: Night feeding?

Some people say give your baby the breast milk in a bottle before bedtime with a little bit of baby rice...does not work for everyone but its worth a try...my daughter was full longer because of the rice and she was happy cuz of it.

missdaisie04 |

Q&A: Night feeding?

For the first two months, I would usually wake up completely. Get vertical, and get baby vertical. If you bring her to lay with you and nurse her on your side, you & baby are more likely to drift back to sleep. If you sit in the rocking chair, or on the couch with the Boppy (give you an excuse to get a drink of water or juice) then it's the same idea as changing a diaper. Keep her awake. *In the hospital, the nurse made me blow in my son's face to get him awake/alert for the 4 AM feeding. Kindof mean, but it worked. Also, make sure you're drinking LOTS of fluids. I would drink a full 12 oz. glass of water EVERY time I nursed, so that I would remember to ingest enough fluids. The good thing is, after 2 mo. you can usually just sit up in bed and nurse or nurse lying down, because the baby will not be waking up as much and will be able to nurse on demand better. YOU'RE DOING A GREAT JOB! Just keep at it. It's really hard at first and you never know if you're doing it "right" but you ARE! :)

minckley |

Q&A: Night feeding?

My baby is only 3 weeks old today and he eats ALL THE TIME! I don't mind because he always gives me the cutest smiles at 3 a.m. when I think I am turning into a zombie. Also 3 a.m. is a time I know I can nurse him without the phone ringing or someone showing up on a surprise visit to "help out". I really like the idea of changing his diaper mid feeding so he nurses on the other side and then hopefully sleeps longer. Also I find that if I remember to eat super healthy like when I was pregnant and get enough fluid I feel a lot better too.

KarolynnS1153 |

Q&A: Night feeding?

Okay Frist of all.. I started stretching the time between feedings at 4 weeks... and its worked out pretty well.. she cried a lil bit ofcourse but she learned.. and now is a happy 3 month old baby.. always do what you feel you are most comfortable with but be careful to not create bad habbits early.. it only makes things harder on you as shes older.

solomonster |

Q&A: Night feeding?

Maybe u could add a teaspoon of cereal to her formula at night so it's just alittle heavier and maybe more satisfying. I think at a month my daughter was up to 3 oz

christyluv |

Q&A: Night feeding?

I also had to deny her of the amount she wanted just because during that time my husband was working and I was virtually alone on this. I did feel a little guilty at first, but I started to see that she was getting used to it nicely, and I also introduced to her organic baby formula which also helped and my doctor said there's nothing to be worried about. Good luck!

Michaela Pam |

Q&A: Night feeding?

I have found that just the sensation of 'sucking' soothes my daughter right back to sleep, so a pacifier helps. If you choose not to use one, I've also held her tightly to by body and sung or hummed her right back to sleep. The vibrations of humming seem to do the trick. Hope that helps. Sara

PoLo sArA |

Q&A: Night feeding?

We had a similar problem with our baby, but I saw a lactation consultant and it turned out I had an oversupply issue- meaning I was producing too much foremilk and this is primarily what she was getting instead of the more satisfying hind milk. This accompanied with latch issues she was successfully getting as much as she needed. To simply tell if this is an issue if you are breast feeding her stool will greenish. Now at a month old our baby sleeps at least 5 hours through the night- I ensure the feeding before bed is a little longer than those during the day and nudge her to take more- a suggestion from the lactation consultant.

dbharwood |

Q&A: Night feeding?

For anyone coming here with this same question, there is a lot of conflicting advice. It's hard to know what to do, especially when you are stressed and sleep-deprived. My daughter ate every hour or two, day and night, for the first three months and I literally thought I was going to die. Co-sleeping saved me. As a mom, your own instincts are the best to follow. Keep in mind that breastmilk is digested in less than 90 minutes. So to force a baby to wait three hours between feedings when they are still young and have a tiny stomach and are actually hungry every hour, to me that seems cruel. A month old is way too young to start trying to make baby accommodate your schedule.

LH3 |

Q&A: Night feeding?

My babygirl is almost 12wks and is getting up 2 or 3 times a night. She takes planty of naps during the day, which I've read helps them be able to sleep better at night. I breastfeed and sometimes give formula when my mom is bbysitting and I don't have enough breastmilk pumped. Is it too early to give her some rice cereal to try getting her sleeping through the night?

kear88 |

Q&A: Night feeding?

my son is a month old and we noticed that he was feeding quite often. We realized that he didn't like the feeling of not being full all the time. So I was feeding him when he didn't really need it. We decided to try making him wait 2 hours between feedings. He has learned that when it is feeding time, he better eat all that he needs cause he isn't getting anymore for awhile. It's not mean, it's just knowing your child and what they need instead of what they want. It also helps you get more rest.

cappuccino413 |

Q&A: Night feeding?

At 4 weeks old it is quite normal for a breast fed baby to feed every 1 and a half to 2 hours. I have been there! hold tough you will get through it. If you are exclusively breastfeeding its a case of supply and demand and your supply might not be fully established by now. It should over the next few weeks. Also at 3 weeks baby has the first growth spirt. THe more the baby feeds the more mild you will produce as its stimulated by sucking. I agree with the going to bed early. Don't worry about house work, cooking etc for these first few weeks. Rest is you number 1 priority. You are doing great! Stretching the time between feeds at 4 weeks is ridiculous advice. Baby roots cause they are hungry, it is instinctive. Especially at this age.That advice above is terrible. If you do want to supplement with a bottle you can however it doesn't make them sleep longer. Think about it, do all formula fed babies sleep through the night? Also if you are giving a bottle of formula here and there it will affect your supply. You do what is right for you. Hang in with the breastfeeding if you can but if you are not enjoying it do not feel bad about changing to formula either. A happy Mum is a happy baby!

hairymonkey |