Not sure if your baby is getting enough milk from breastfeeding? Here are five ways to tell…
Sucking and swallowing you can hear
This is a good way to tell if a feeding session is successful. Watch frequently for wide jaw movements and listen carefully for consistent swallowing. See if you notice a strong, deep, pulling sucking motion.
Relaxed arms and hands after feedings
Things like rooting, hand-to-mouth movements, kicking, waving arms are signs of a hungry baby. A calm, relaxed state can indicate the baby is good and full for the time being.
Remember, however, that babies are usually really sleepy during the first week or so and may not wake up often enough for feedings, so you may have to wake up your baby yourself. Sometimes, the baby may fall back asleep during a feeding.
Softer breasts after feedings
To help prevent engorgement, you should nurse regularly, on demand and at least eight times a day. Do not skip feedings, especially during those precious first few weeks. Make sure your baby is latched well and is emptying your breast effectively.
Plenty of wet and dirty diapers
If your baby is not having several stools per day, the typical pattern for newborns after the mother’s milk comes in, it is a concern and you should contact your doctor or a lactation specialist about it. Some newborn babies stool after every feeding. There should be multiple wet diapers, too. Look for light yellow to clear urine.
Sufficient weight gain
Speaking of weight, know that babies generally lose a little weight in the first few days after birth and then begin to gradually gain it back. Ten percent is considered the acceptable maximum weight loss. You should have your baby’s weight checked regularly the first two weeks after birth.