Many of us believe that a baby lets us know they are hungry by crying. However, recognising the subtle early feeding cues before a baby cry will help your feeding experience.
Examples of early feeding cues include:
Feeding a baby before they cry, when they are showing these early feeding cues, is much easier than waiting until they have become upset.
Learning and spotting these helpful yet subtle cues is much easier when baby is with you.
Keeping your baby close to you initially will help you to recognise when your baby needs feeding and see a pattern as it gradually forms.
Initially a baby’s feeding pattern may vary considerably, as they stimulate your breastmilk supply.
You may experience shorter gaps between some feeds, particularly in the evenings (sometimes called ‘cluster feeding’) and longer gaps at other times, however it is normal for a breastfed baby to feed at least 8 times in a 24-hour period.
Each breastfeed may last a varying amount of time also – just like us, a baby’s appetite can vary throughout the day too.