Is my baby getting enough breastmilk?
This is the number one question we get from new parents. This is a totally normal question to have – after all, most of us have seen bottle-feeding and it is very easy to measure baby’s intake from a bottle!
- Your newborn should be drinking breastmilk at the breast 10-12 times a day, and at the very least eight times per day. Nursing sessions should last around 15-20 minutes and your baby should be fed to satiety. It isn’t possible to overfeed a breastfed baby.
- Diaper output. In the early days, baby should have one poopy diaper for each day of life (one day old? One poopy diaper. Two days old? Two poopy diapers, etc.) and after four days, three to four poopy diapers per day. A similar pattern is expected for wet diapers one per day for each day of life until colostrum has transitioned into a more mature milk, and then five or more wet diapers each day.
- Weight gain. On average, breastfed babies gain about six ounces a week. If at all possible, use the same scale to track baby’s weight progress, since different scales could have different calibrations.
- Look at your baby! In the words of Dr. Jay Gordon: Is your baby eager to nurse? Is your baby peeing and pooping well? Is your baby’s urine either clear or very pale yellow?Are your baby’s eyes bright and alert? Is your baby’s skin a healthy color and texture?Is your baby moving its arms and legs vigorously? Are baby’s nails growing? Is your baby meeting developmental milestones? Is your baby’s overall disposition happy and playful? Yes, your baby sleeps a lot, but when your baby is awake does he have periods of being very alert.
- If you’re still feeling unsure, seek professional help! A certified lactation counselor, like the team at Buddha Belly, can do a home visit to help you more.