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Thread: Breastfeeding and schedule...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2007

    Default Breastfeeding and schedule...

    My DD is now 3 weeks old and I am going to put her on a Gina Ford (or my own) routine at 6 weeks. I am Breastfeeding and want to know how to deal with the feeding.. i.e. if she is hungry but it is not the feeding time, what do I do? I mean I can't starve her... please give me some light here.....

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006

    Default Re: Breastfeeding and schedule...

    It's ok to set up some daily "routines" for your baby, but feeding schedules are not recommended at all for breastfed babies (personally I don't think they are a great idea even for bottle fed babies). Feeding schedules can lead to inadequate milk supply and poor weight gain. The reason is that babies may need to eat different amounts on different days, and they are good at self-regulating the amount that they need to eat. It is very important to feed the baby when the baby is hungry. Babies will go through growth spurts, during which they may need to nurse almost constantly. This builds up mom's milk supply to the new level of need. Since breastfeeding works according to supply and demand, if the baby is kept on a schedule, milk supply can become inadequate. Even when not in a big "growth spurt" baby's growth and activity level can vary, and therefore the amount they eat changes as well. Following baby's cues is the best way to assure that there is enough milk.

    That being said, many babies will fall into a routine on their own. You can watch your baby, and try to set up some regular routines involving waking, play, and sleep around your baby's natural rhythms. Just keep in mind that at such a young age babies are constantly changing, so the routine may change as well. When my DS was little, are remember feeling that as soon as I thought I had everything figured out, he'd change it all on me and I'd be starting all over again.

    Congratulations on your new LO!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007

    Default Re: Breastfeeding and schedule...

    Congratulations on your baby girl and choosing to breastfeed.

    As pp has said. Feeding schedules are not really workable with breastfeeding for all the reasons mentioned.

    It is true that the baby starts to develop his/her own routine for when s/he is hungry, tired or wants activity. My ds is now 6mo...today...happy 6monthday ....and he has pretty much worked out his own routine. He started sorting things out when he was about 10 weeks. He wants to be in bed by 19:30...and wake up to feed during the night, then wake up at 07:00. During the day he likes to wake up, feed, change, play then sleep. This goes on every of three hours...two hours up...one hour asleep. I didn't lay down the law...he decided what he wanted and I followed.

    He has self organised a workable routine, which allows me to plan my day.

    I am just showing this as an example. My ds tends to change his night time feeding pattern...but everything else has stayed the same.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006

    Default Re: Breastfeeding and schedule...

    This is a good article that addresses the AAP's stance on the issue (in favor of cue feeding), some biological reasons why schedules are detrimental to breastfeeding, and some ways to cope if you are a person who thrives on a schedule. http://breastfeed.com/resources/articles/oncue.htm Relaxing into parenthood is challenging and takes time, but it's very rewarding.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006

    Default Re: Breastfeeding and schedule...

    I was looking into feeding on a schedule (in the beginning) and looked up pros and cons and though there are a few pros to it, the cons LEAPED out of the articles to me. Feeding only on a schedule can not only lead to low milk supply for mother, but low weight gain (as much as FAILURE TO THRIVE) for baby. At 6 weeks old a baby should be letting you know when to feed him, not the other way around. Please look into your choices before you finally decide what to do. As pp stated, there are ways to form a routine without risking your supply or your babies health. Sorry to be so blunt, but I just know that when I looked into this I got scared. Please do not take this as rude.

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