Baby getting enough milk

How to Know That your Baby is Getting Enough Milk

Many babies, but not all, lose a small amount of weight in the first days after birth. Your baby’s doctor will check his or her weight at your first visit after you leave the hospital. Make sure to visit your baby's doctor within three to five days after birth and then again at two to three weeks of age for checkups.

You can tell if your baby is getting plenty of milk if he or she is mostly content and gaining weight steadily after the first week of age. From birth to three months, typical weight gain is 2/3 to 1 ounce each day.

Bowel Movements

It is not unusual for the frequency of your baby's bowel movements to change at around 4-6 weeks of age. At that time, the baby may go 3 or more days without a bowel movement.

As your baby gets older, the digestive system gets more efficient, so there is less waste. In addition, the gastro colic reflex begins to lessen. As long as your baby's stools appear soft and loose, your baby is not constipated.  If you are concerned about constipation, please speak with your health care provider.

Growth Spurts

At times, it may seem like your baby wants to eat constantly. Your baby will probably have feeding frequency days known as "growth spurts." They usually occur around 2-3 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months, and 6 months.

During these times, your baby may feed more frequently for 2-3 days until your breasts have time to respond to the increased stimulation. The increased feeding will increase the volume of milk and change the composition of your milk to better meet your baby's needs. Avoiding supplementation during this time will help your body meet the demands of your growing baby.

Other signs that your baby is getting plenty of milk:

  • He or she is passing enough clear or pale yellow urine and it's not deep yellow or orange.
  • He or she has enough bowel movements.
  • He or she switches between short sleeping periods and wakeful, alert periods.
  • He or she is satisfied and content after feedings.
  • Your breasts feel softer after you feed your baby.

Talk to your baby's doctor if you are worried that your baby is not eating enough.

Updated June 6, 2016

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