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Thread: 4 month old feeding confusion

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2

    Unhappy 4 month old feeding confusion

    Hi, my 4 month LO's new feeding habits are totally confusing me - I don't know if he's getting enough fluids to hydrate or food. He had always fed for 30-40 mins each side up until 16 wks, but then he went on a nursing strike at most feeds (due to a cold I think). I can't get enough EBM when I pump so I had to put him on formula. After a few days he started coming back to the breast more, but I was still having to give bottles 3 or 4 times a day. Now he seems happy to come on to the breast, but at most feeds will only go on for 3-6 mins per side, feeding for a maximum of 10 mins in total.

    I'm totally confused about whether or not he's getting enough to eat / drink. During the day although he goes on he fusses a lot and pulls on and off frequently. I'm not clear whether he still needs to be offered the formula or not. Sometimes when I offer it now he's not interested and only takes < 1oz, but at other times he will drink 7-8oz. My breasts seem pretty empty after he's been on for just a few minutes.

    Is this just a sign of his maturity and quicker feeding now that he's 4 months, or has my milk failed to recover sufficiently after the nursing strike? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    6,959

    Default Re: 4 month old feeding confusion

    hi and welcome to the forum!
    Not being sure your baby is eating enough is a scary experience.
    The best way to see if your baby is hydrated is to count diapers. 5-6 wet disposable diapers is the amount that you are looking for in a well hydrated baby. Does this feel right to you?
    How often are you nursing? placing baby to your breast as often as you can manage will help build up your supply again. When your supply suffers a big ding like a nursing strike, allow your body the chance to recuperate. The more frequently you remove milk, the more you will make.
    Even when your breast feels empty there is still around 25% left in there. Really. it's just coming out slow. Have you considered doing breast compressions when feeding baby? Babyies get used to the quicker flow of a bottle fast, and may need some additional encouragement back on to the breast.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    354

    Default Re: 4 month old feeding confusion

    Hi, I just wanted to say my girl usually fed for about 4-5 minutes a feeding 7-10 times a day. I could never get her to go longer. Sometimes it was only a few minutes. I counted her diaper output and it was good so I really didnt worry. Also she gained fine. Sometimes when they feed so short it makes you wonder are they getting enough. In my case she was getting plenty. She is just a fast eater.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    259

    Default Re: 4 month old feeding confusion

    my DS also used to eat for long periods (30 - 45 mins, sometimes an hour), but all of a sudden started to nurse for 5 - 10 mins when he reached 3.5 months, especially when he's wide awake. At first i thought he just wasn't interested or wasn't hungry so i pumped after i fed him and just got 1 oz (combined). I usually get 4 oz or so in the morning so he probably nurse faster now. He also would pull away or would be on-off my breast, which i thought was weird initially but i think it's because he's almost done or close to emptying my milk.

    just count the number of wet diapers. good luck!

    Gabe and Jacob's Nanay

    Gabe born on September 07, 2004

    Jacob born on May 29, 2007

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: 4 month old feeding confusion

    Thanks for the replies. I think that unfortunately it's a milk supply issue following on from the nursing strike, as today he's only gone on max. 3 mins per side and then roars until he gets the bottle. I'm putting him to the breast a lot, but it doesn't seem to make any difference (this has been going on for 2 weeks now). Sometimes it even seems as if the breast is full but he's just not interested after the first few mins which I guess is the fast flowing for milk. Very frustrating!

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