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Thread: is baby hungry?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    16

    Default is baby hungry?

    Hi,

    I'm having a hard determining whether baby is hungry. If she's asleep and wakes up fussy/crying then I'm pretty confident she is hungry as she'll eat hardily. However, if she skips sleeping then I'm not so sure what the signs. Sometimes I try to rely on the time; i.e. if she ate 2 hrs ago then I think she must be hungry if she's getting fussy. Sometimes after a meal she falls asleep so I put her down. I watch her and sometimes she looks like she's rooting but she's still asleep. She also has mild reflux and I've noticed when that is acting up she'll put her hands to her mouth or stick out her tongue, grunt. She likes to sleep with something touching her lips (hands, blanket, etc). Could this be a sign that she's still hungry? I can't believe I can't read her signs but it's much harder than I thought it would be. Please help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    1,168

    Default Re: is baby hungry?

    Remind me -- your dd is still quite young, isn't she? Under 2 months or so?

    Anyway -- it's okay that you don't always know exactly what her behavior means. Sometimes the rooting behavior means she's hungry, but sometimes it is just reflexive ... something babies are born doing whether they need to do it or not (does that make sense?)

    I'd recommend you just take your best guess and use trial and error to meet her needs. If you think she might want to nurse, then nurse her (babies don't always have to be hungry in order to need to nurse, KWIM?) If that's not what she needs right then, she'll let you know!

    Oh, and don't feel bad that you can't always read her signs. I remember it took me at least a couple months before I knew my son's "hungry" cry from his "painful" cry or his "angry" or "bored" or "lonely" cry. Trial and error in the meantime.

    --Rebecca

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    43

    Default Re: is baby hungry?

    Rebecca, your advice was great. You can't overfeed a breastfed baby, so when in doubt, many mothers just offer to nurse, and let the baby determine whether he wants to or not. Babies sometimes want to nurse because they are feeling uncomfortable from gas or some such, and nursing is comforting. Nursing frequently can also help with reflux, because suckling can stimulate stomach emptying and movement of the GI tract (this is why babies often stool during breastfeeding).

    You are doing a great job! She doesn't know that you don't know what you're doing :-) she just knows that mommy is there for her and responding to her.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    1,168

    Default Re: is baby hungry?

    Quote Originally Posted by LLLLynnette
    She doesn't know that you don't know what you're doing :-) she just knows that mommy is there for her and responding to her.

    This is SO true. When my son was born, my stepson was 12 years old and we were having all the typical pre-teen attitude problems. The very most reassuring thing I ever read at that time was that babies are NOT teenagers -- they are not judging your every move and holding grudges when you make mistakes. Babies are learning how it all works right along with their parents.

    --Rebecca

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    39

    Default Re: is baby hungry?

    Don't feel bad - I still am not sure what my baby's cries mean all the time! And I distinctly remember that I couldn't figure out her cues for the life of me when she was littler. The only thing she did was put her fingers in her mouth - but she did it all the time so I never knew when it was a hungry sign (unless she was hungry all the time!). So I mostly went by the clock (b/c when she slept she would get up every 3 hours to eat so I used that as a time)...& if she did cry or was upset before 3 hours I'd try to feed her. But, looking back I probably should have offered the breast more, b/c maybe she was hungry. Now, at 4 mos, if she is crying alot, I feed her & sometimes she eats, sometimes not but it does seem to calm her down.

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