Newborn Feeding Patterns

Your baby will need to feed frequently in these early weeks and will be waking every few hours to do so. Circadian rhythms (our sleep/wake clock) is not developed and your baby will sleep in stretches throughout the day and night. The first two weeks of life, your baby and you are slowly getting over the birthing process. Your baby will pretty much be sleeping most of the day and waking every few hours for a feeding. This is the time where healthy feeding patterns are established. If you are nursing – this is a critical time of development for your milk supply and getting into a nice feeding routine can take some time. If you are struggling in any way with breastfeeding or find your baby is having feeding difficulties, please consult your pediatrician, health care provider and Lactation Professional, if nursing. Your baby’s ability to sleep well will be directly correlated to how well they are feeding. Getting help as soon as possible and at the first sign of struggles will help you & your baby stay on a healthy feeding track.

Feeding Schedules

Breast fed babies will need between 8-12 feedings in a 24 hour period resulting typically in feeds every 2-3 hours day & night. Formula fed babies typically need up to 6-12 feedings in a 24 hour period resulting in feedings every 2-3 hours on average. Some babies may begin to take one longer stretch without a feed by their second week of life. This stretch may be between 3-5 hours and will only happen once in a 24 hour period. We will discuss how you can help your baby sync that one long stretch during the night. Because your baby’s drive for sleep will be affected by his need to eat, you can rest assure you will be waking frequently to tend to your baby in the first few months of life (day & night)!