How Often and How Much Should Your Baby Eat?

Some of the frequent questions new dad and mom have is how typically their child ought to eat. The most effective reply is surprisingly easy: normally, infants needs to be fed each time they appear hungry.

How do I do know when my child is hungry?

For infants born prematurely or with sure medical situations, scheduled feedings suggested by your pediatrician are greatest. However for many wholesome, full-term infants, dad and mom can look to their child reasonably than the clock for starvation cues. That is known as feeding on demand, or responsive feeding.

Starvation cues

A hungry child typically will cry. However it’s greatest to observe for starvation cues earlier than the infant begins crying, which is a late signal of starvation and might make it exhausting for them to calm down and eat.

Another typical starvation cues in infants:


  • Licking lips
  • Sticking tongue out
  • Rooting (shifting jaw and mouth or head looking for breast)
  • Placing his/her hand to mouth repeatedly
  • Opening her mouth
  • Fussiness
  • Sucking on all the things round

It is very important understand, nonetheless, that each time your child cries or sucks it’s not essentially as a result of she or he is hungry. Infants suck not just for starvation, but in addition for consolation; it may be exhausting at first for fogeys to inform the distinction. Typically, your child simply must be cuddled or modified.

Normal tips for child feeding

It is very important bear in mind all infants are completely different―some prefer to snack extra typically, and others drink extra at one time and go longer between feedings. Nonetheless, most infants will drink extra and go longer between feedings as they get larger and their tummies can maintain extra milk:

  • Most newborns eat each 2 to three hours, or 8 to 12 occasions each 24 hours. Infants may solely soak up half ounce per feeding for the primary day or two of life, however after that can often drink 1 to 2 ounces at every feeding. This quantity will increase to 2 to three ounces by 2 weeks of age.
  • At about 2 months of age, infants often take 4 to five ounces per feeding each 3 to 4 hours.
  • At 4 months, infants often take 4 to six ounces per feeding.
  • At 6 months, infants could also be taking as much as 8 ounces each 4 to five hours.

Most infants will enhance the quantity of method they drink by a median of 1 ounce every month earlier than leveling off at about 7 to eight ounces per feeding. Stable meals needs to be began at about 6 months outdated.

Issues about overfeeding or underfeeding your child

Too full?

Infants are often fairly good at consuming the correct quantity, however they will generally soak up greater than they want. Infants who’re bottle feeding could also be extra more likely to overfeed, as a result of consuming from a bottle might take much less effort than breastfeeding.

Overfed infants can have abdomen pains, gasoline, spit up or vomit and be at increased danger for weight problems later in life. It is higher to supply much less, since you may at all times give extra in case your child desires it. This additionally provides infants time to understand after they’re full.

In case you are involved your child desires to eat on a regular basis―even when she or he is full―speak together with your pediatrician. Pacifiers could also be used after feeding to assist sooth healthy-weight infants who prefer to suck for consolation, reasonably than vitamin. For infants who’re breastfed, it is best to attend to supply pacifiers till round 3 to 4 weeks of age, when breastfeeding is well-established.

Bother gaining weight?

Most infants will double their beginning weight by 5 months of age and triple their beginning weight by their first birthday. In case your child is having hassle gaining weight, do not wait too lengthy between feeding―even when it means waking your child. You’ll want to speak together with your pediatrician about how typically and the way a lot to feed your child.

How do I do know if my child is getting sufficient to eat?

Each day diapers

A new child’s diaper is an efficient indicator of whether or not she or he is getting sufficient to eat. Within the first few days after beginning, a child ought to have 2 to three moist diapers every day. After the primary 4 to five days, a child ought to have a minimum of 5 to six moist diapers a day. Stool frequency is extra variable and relies upon whether or not your child is breastfed or method fed.

Development charts

Throughout common well being check-ups, your pediatrician will examine your child’s weight and plot it on a progress chart. Your child’s progress on the expansion chart is one approach to inform whether or not or not they’re getting sufficient meals. Infants who keep in wholesome progress percentile ranges are in all probability getting a wholesome quantity of meals throughout feedings.

Bear in mind

Speak together with your pediatrician if in case you have any questions or issues about your child getting the correct quantity to eat.

Leave a Reply