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Thread: 2 Month old feeding every 4 hours?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Maryland
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    71

    Default 2 Month old feeding every 4 hours?

    I'm posting for my sister-in-law this time. She comes to me for breastfeeding advice, and so far I've felt comfortable giving her answers, but I don't want to go against her pediatrician's suggestion without some support from ladies who are more knowledgeable.

    My niece is 2 months old. She gained 2 pounds from her 1 month to 2 month checks, so she's been doing great with breastfeeding. In the beginning, one pediatrician told my SIL to wake the baby every 2 hours, day and night, to make sure she was getting enough. (She goes to a practice that has multiple pediatricians.) Weight gain is obviously not a problem now. However, the pediatrician she saw at the 2 month check suggested my sister-in-law stop waking my niece to eat at night (which I told her was ok within reason), but he also said she could let my niece go 4 hours without eating during the day. I feel like 4 hours is too long for my niece to go without eating during the day, especially if she is sleeping longer stretches at night. Am I right? It seems like she should still be worried about her supply a little, as well, but I was always worried about my supply because I had a sleepy baby. Should her baby still be nursing at least 8 times per 24 hours at 2 months? I'd appreciate any input.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    California
    Posts
    418

    Default Re: 2 Month old feeding every 4 hours?

    Maybe the pediatrician meant that it was okay if her baby occasionally went up to 4 hours between feedings during the day, rather than that he was suggesting that that was how often the baby should usually feed? I feed DS on demand, but I think he occasionally went up to 3 or 3.5 hours without showing hunger cues at that age. More often, he was nursing every 1-2 hours, but sometimes for whatever reason he'd have a 3 hour stretch (usually when we were out and about) where he didn't seem to want to eat. I think it's fine for a 2 month old to occasionally go that long if they just don't seem hungry; but if the pediatrician is suggesting that she feed her baby every 4 hours like on a schedule, that's flat-out wrong. She should be feeding on demand, however frequent or infrequent that ends up being. Usually, though, for a breastfed baby, that will be at least every 2 hours during the day, at 2 months old. I agree with you that in total, baby should be nursing a minimum of 8 times in 24 hours. 10-12 times would not be uncommon, at all. However the spacing of those sessions works out, there should be at least 8 feeds in 24 hours. The most important thing is to feed on demand, whenever the baby is showing hunger signs--even if it's only been an hour. If she does this, any supply issues should work themselves out.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    10,440

    Default Re: 2 Month old feeding every 4 hours?

    If the ped is suggesting making baby wait instead of on demand feeding, the is silly. At that age, let baby drive.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,326

    Default Re: 2 Month old feeding every 4 hours?

    Yes IMO both peds over complicated things. Cue feeding is always appropriate (except if baby does not cue often enough. This is rare especially after about 2 weeks of age. ) I suggest gift sis a copy of the womanly art of breast feeding.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
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    Default Re: 2 Month old feeding every 4 hours?

    I'm afraid she's more of a "schedule person," but I'll suggest that. She did ask for my opinion, after all! I was never in this situation. My sleepy baby didn't wake himself up to eat until after 2.5 months, so I was at a loss as to the advice to give her. Thanks, ladies!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,860

    Default Re: 2 Month old feeding every 4 hours?

    She may want to read the American Academy of Pediatrics policy statement on breastfeeding: http://pediatrics.aappublications.or...peds.2011-3552. It says, in part, "After breastfeeding is well established, the frequency of feeding may decline to approximately 8 times per 24 hours, but the infant may increase the frequency again with growth spurts or when an increase in milk volume is desired". In other words, 8 feedings per day is the minimum recommended number of eating opportunities for an exclusively breastfed baby.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Maryland
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    71

    Default Re: 2 Month old feeding every 4 hours?

    Thanks for the link. I might just send it to her. I don't want to seem too pushy, but I did emphasize the minimum of 8 times when I sent her a message just now. She really wants to succeed at breastfeeding, but she comes from a family of formula-feeders who like their sleep and CIO methods. (She's technically my husband's sister-in-law, but we're pretty close.) I really appreciate all the help!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,326

    Default Re: 2 Month old feeding every 4 hours?

    Well I have never understood how being a slave to a feeding schedule is easier when breastfeeding than cue feeding. But whatever-I get it, some folks think it’s easier. I guess I would say that, if that is the case, from strictly a baby getting enough standpoint, while there are issues (missing growth spurts etc.) scheduling could be ok as long as baby is being fed frequently enough. Unfortunately some baby training manuals and hcp who do not understand (or care about) the ins and outs of milk supply or what is reasonable, milk transfer wise, per breastfeeding session, suggest scheduling that is likely to mess up milk supply and even possibly weight gain. Unfortunately what works scheduling-wise for formula fed babies and even older breastfed babies may be disastrous for younger breastfed babies.

    Just keep offering your support and, when appropriate, the evidence based info. I bet your sil appreciates having someone experienced she can talk to about breastfeeding even if she ultimately follows a slightly different path.

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