In the early days, it can be hard to tell if your breastmilk supply is meeting baby’s needs. Very often, new mums misunderstand their baby’s restlessness as hunger, often resorting to supplementing baby’s diet with milk formula. But this only jeopardises your breastmilk supply. The key to successful breastfeeding is this: don’t get obsessed with how much your baby needs to drink. As for whether she needs more, check these four signs first.
- Your baby is breastfeeding at least eight times every 24 hours. This works out to be about once every three- or four-hourly. Don’t forget: the period of each feeding interval starts from the minute baby starts latching. So, if you started baby started suckling at your breasts at 8am and didn’t finish till 9am, her next feed (in a three-hour interval) should start again at 11am.
- Your baby has at least four yellow bowel movements every 24 hours by day four. Breastmilk causes baby’s stools to be watery because it consists 80 per cent of water, and is sweet-smelling, so don’t panic and think that your breastmilk is giving baby diarrhoea.
- You can hear your baby gulping or swallowing at feedings. You will also see her looking like she’s tipsy, and might even smile as she gets satisfied. It’s the cutest scene, and best reward for your hard work, ever!
- Once your baby latches on, your nipples do not hurt when your baby nurses. You should feel your engorged breasts getting emptied, and feeling softer at the end of each feed.