Cluster Feeding

What do you do if your baby wants to eat ALL of the time?

1) Feed formula, you must not be making enough
2) Cry
3) Run away
4) Follow your baby’s lead and go with the flow (no pun intended)

If you answered 1, 2, or 3, I can sympathize with you , but alas “No”, these are not the best options. There is a time and place for formula, but if your baby is eating “efficiently” at least 8-12 times/day (effectively removing breastmilk), having at least 6-8 good wet diapers, 3-4 yellow seedy stool, and gaining weight appropriately, then supplementation is not medically indicated (not needed).

Running away from a difficult or frustrating situation is never a good option and crying, although allowed will not help the situation. So what is left? That’s right, “Follow your baby’s lead and go with the flow”.

If your baby wants to eat, feed them. Remember, breastfeeding is a learned art and in the beginning baby’s are doing just that—LEARNING. So if they want to eat 10 minutes after they just “finished”, let them. Perhaps your little one wants dessert, or in some cases, a second helping of dessert.

How do you know your baby is HUNGRY? What are the signs of hunger? click here to find out.

You can not overfeed your breastfed baby, so go with the flow.

You and the baby are dancing the “feeding dance” and you must let the baby lead.

There are many reasons a baby will cluster feed (feed frequently). It could be because they have an emotional need for comfort, it could be because they are ill/sick, it could be because they are going through a growth spurt (a growth spurt is a likely cause of frequent feeding), and it could be because they are HUNGRY. In any case, putting them back on the breast will help.

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