Newborn Feeding Tips for New Parents

As new parents, it might be confusing how often a newborn must be fed. Nutrition is essential to keep your child’s development and health at its best. Here are some newborn feeding tips to free yourself from worries when it comes to nourishing your little one.

Breastfeeding or Formula Feeding

You have to options in providing nourishment for your newborn. It is recommended to breastfeed a newborn during the first days after birth because breast milk is rich in colostrum, an essential factor for baby’s immunity against illnesses. Some mothers continue to breastfeed until their little one turns 2 and even beyond but it actually depends on the situation. For moms who have issues in breastfeeding, there’s no need to worry since you can feed your newborn baby formula. It is still rich in nutrients so your baby still gets complete nourishment from it. Formula feeding is really helpful for moms who can’t produce enough milk or if they are working and can’t be there to breastfeed their baby all the time. The decision is solely yours on the type of feeding you provide, as long as your little one is fed and well nourished.

Frequency of Feeding

The next question is, how often do you need to feed your newborn? Newborns often get hungry more frequently than older babies and may need feeding about 1 to 2 hours. As your baby gets older, try adjusting the feeding frequency and increasing the amount of milk given during a feeding. Never let your baby go for more than 4 to 5 hours without feeding.

You may also try to watch out for hunger cues such as crying, opening their mouth or puckering their lips just like sucking. After a few weeks or months, your baby will adjust to the schedule and follow a feeding routine making it a lot easier to tell when it’s feeding time.

Are You Feeding Enough?

Another concern for parents is if their baby is fed enough. It is best to take your newborn to a paediatrician 2 to 3 days after being discharged from the hospital. The doctor will examine and weigh your baby to see if he’s doing fine.

You’ll know that your baby is eating enough when he looks satisfied after a feeding, sleeps well, gaining weight, moves bowels regularly, and wets about 6 to 8 diapers in a day. One main cause of fussy babies is inadequate feeding. Ask a paediatrician to help you address feeding issues if there are any.

Nutritional Supplements

Breastfed babies are usually given vitamin D and iron supplements to meet their daily needs. Formula-fed ones don’t need supplementation because their milk is already fortified with the essential nutrients they need. Consult a doctor to know if it’s still necessary to give your baby supplements or not.

Don’t give water, juice or solid foods to your baby during the first 4 months because aside from being unnecessary, it might even harm your little one.

Every baby has different feeding needs and discovering the right feeding routine and technique for your newborn is the best way to keep him healthy and properly nourished.

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