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Thread: Feeding a newborn with one breast at each feeding

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
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    Brooklyn, NY
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    Question Feeding a newborn with one breast at each feeding

    Hello everyone. I am new to this site, so I apologize if I jump straight to it.

    I have been feeding my newborn with one breast at each feeding, because I over-pumped in the hospital and ended up overstimulating my milk supply. The baby seems to be content with each feeding and he has over 6-7 wet AND soiled diapers a day. Also, he has been gaining weight so far very well. We are now 6 weeks old, but I wonder what will happen when he is 4-6 month and so on.

    My question is, how long can I go on feeding my baby with one breast at a time? Will eventually he will want more and I would have to offer second one? Or the supply will adjust as he grows?

    Thank you all ahead of time.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    20,626

    Default Re: Feeding a newborn with one breast at each feeding

    Welcome to the forum!

    I think the "when" and "how long" questions are the hardest breastfeeding questions to answer because every mom is so individual. What takes one nursing mom 3 weeks might take another 3 months, YKWIM?

    Most moms who start out offering just one breast at a time eventually transition to nursing on both breasts, but when that happens is very variable. Just watch your baby- if you get to a point where he seems unsatisfied after nursing on one breast, or his nursing frequency goes way up, it's a good idea to at least try offering the second breast after he finishes the first.
    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!"

  3. #3

    Default Re: Feeding a newborn with one breast at each feeding

    If he's been doing well on one breast per feeding, he'll probably stick to one breast per feeding. There may be times when he's especially hungry and will want the other side though -- he'll let you know.

    What's likely to happen (and might worry you if you're not prepared for it), is that he'll keep taking only one side at each feeding, but for shorter amounts of time. When he gets to 6 months, you'll wonder how he can possibly be getting enough during those 4-minute feedings. They get amazingly efficient!

    ETA: Wow, just noticed I contradicted mommal. But she's absolutely right that every mom and baby pair is different. So I'll clarify that I'm talking about my own experience -- my 2nd baby nursed on one side from birth and almost never took the second side all through the first year. But he also nursed pretty frequently the whole first year. If you're following your baby's cues, the supply part of it generally works itself out.
    Last edited by @llli*lllkaren; April 7th, 2014 at 09:02 AM.
    Karen
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Feeding a newborn with one breast at each feeding

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*lllkaren View Post
    ETA: Wow, just noticed I contradicted mommal.
    What'll it be, Karen, pistols at ten paces?

    I think I was also speaking to my own experience- I had a huge oversupply with baby #2 and nursed her one-sided for several months. But then my supply adjusted downwards and all of a sudden she wanted both sides at a feeding.
    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!"

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Location
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    Default Re: Feeding a newborn with one breast at each feeding

    My son never took two breasts per feeding.

    I tried to force it when he was about 6 weeks or so, because the literature I had told me that by such-and-such an age baby should be taking both breasts. All that did was make him spit up more, because I wasn't letting him finish the first side, so when I switched sides he would suck down a bunch more foremilk that he didn't really want (I had a touch of oversupply but didn't know it, and this made it worse), and then he would end up spitting up a large amount of it. When I went back to letting him nurse until he was completely done with one breast, he never wanted the other, and things went more smoothly from then on, and he was satisfied with one side per feeding until he weaned as a toddler.

    So yeah, like PP said, just watch how he nurses and take it day by day.
    My little man was born 12/17/2010.

    Baby girl was born 4/30/2014.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Brooklyn, NY
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    Default Re: Feeding a newborn with one breast at each feeding

    Right now, I am dealing with lots of spit up as well. Reflux was ruled out by his doc, so I certainly don't want to offer second breast yet. He has been nursing more often in the early mornings, so I considered perhaps, he is not getting enough. But then this could be due to his ~ 6 week growth spurt.

    Thank you all for your advice and input. I will be patient and wait until my baby gives me a signal. :-)

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