3 Answers

Just wondering how often babies wake up for a feed? For the Breastfeeding Mothers?

Posted by mom57665, 9th August 2016

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  • Depends a little on the age and if they go through her growth spurt.

    As with everything, how often a baby naturally wants to feed will vary amongst individuals. However studies that explore how often babies breastfeed find that most do so between 8 – 12 times per 24 hours, although some feed much more than that (up to around 18 times in some studies). Most tend to feed towards the latter part of that range, with around 11 – 12 feeds per 24 hours5.

    Notably, babies calorie needs do not change vastly after the first few weeks, but they become able to take bigger feeds. This means that from around 8 – 12 weeks some babies start feeding in longer intervals. However, this pattern doesn’t necessarily remain. Studies that have tracked this longitudinally find that many babies do start to feed less often but then start feeding again more frequently (akin to a newborn) around 4 months of age, before dropping down again. This fits with the commonly observed ‘four month growth spurt’, which is often seen as a mistaken need for solid foods6. However, as with everything, some babies will continue to take smaller feeds more often until they move to solid foods (and, still even then). Just as with adults, some of us prefer set meals a day whereas others prefer to graze.

  • I breastfed my daughter for one year and one week. I breastfed her generally every 3 and a half hours. At 2 months of age she started to sleep through the night, then there was a gap of 10 hours between the night and morning feeding. During the day still around 3.5 hours, sometimes 4.

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