Allaitement : Comment savoir si bébé boit suffisamment de lait ? - Élhée

Breastfeeding: How do you know if your baby is drinking enough milk?

Women who exclusively breastfeed their child all encounter the same problem: it is impossible to know the quantity of milk drunk by each baby at each feeding. A problem which obviously no longer exists once you decide to breastfeed and offer your milk in a graduated bottle.

How can you ensure, when breastfeeding exclusively, that your child is full and that there is no risk of being hungry in the two hours following the last feeding?

Let's take stock of the different signs of satiety. 🍼

Baby asks for the breast every two hours: a sign that he is not drinking enough?

Breast milk is less consistent than powdered milk , which does not mean it is less nutritious! On the other hand, it is digested more quickly by the stomach , which explains why your baby feels hungry more quickly when breastfed (or bottle fed but with breast milk).

Furthermore, the younger a baby is, the smaller his stomach... Thus, the quantities of milk absorbed are proportional to his age and increase over the months.

👀 Also read:

Recognize the signs of satiety in your child

Knowing how to recognize the signs of satiety in their child allows them not to underfeed them or, conversely, overfeed them. Some parents, fearing that their child's stomach will starve, tend to insist on meals. Let all young parents be reassured; A healthy baby knows when to stop drinking and doesn't let himself starve. 😊

Here are some examples of situations that are easily recognizable and prove that a baby has finished his lunch:

  • Release of sucking : When baby begins to relax and “fuckle” instead of sucking greedily as at the start of a meal, this indicates that he has received enough milk. His sucking becomes slower and less vigorous; it is easily distinguished from nutritive sucking.

  • Spontaneous letting go of the breast : Sometimes the baby spontaneously lets go of the breast, even if there is still milk.

  • Shorter, Spaced Feedings : As the baby grows, their feedings may become shorter and less frequent. If this is the case for your child, rest assured. This does not mean that baby drinks less, but simply that he empties the breast more quickly. It is also recommended to systematically offer both breasts to be sure that your needs are met.

  • Drowsiness : After drinking enough, a baby will doze off until they fall asleep peacefully. Again, no worries. A baby who falls asleep on the breast is no longer hungry unless he is extremely tired. A lack of sleep can temporarily impact one's ability to eat as much as needed.

  • Expression of satisfaction : This is probably the most moving indicator of satiety! Some babies express their satisfaction after a feeding by adopting a particular expression; reflecting a feeling of intense well-being mixed with absolute peace.

  • Reduced fussiness : If your baby seemed fussy before feeding, then suddenly became calm and relaxed after drinking, this is normally an indication that he was able to drink as much as he wanted.

Analyze diapers to ensure proper hydration of your infant

Diapers are, and many health professionals agree, an additional indicator to attest to the good state of hydration of an infant. 👶

Here's what you should pay attention to:

🔄 Frequency of changes : A well-hydrated baby will generally wet between 6 to 8 diapers per day.

🧪 Color and quantity of urine : Urine should be clear to pale yellow in color. Dark urine is a sign of dehydration or a pathology for which you should consult without delay. The quantity delivered also matters; the layers should feel heavy to hold. Except of course the diapers of the first days which we tend to change systematically to optimize hygiene and which therefore do not have time to soak and absorb several urinations.

🕒 Frequency and characteristics of stools : Your baby's stools also provide information about his or her state of health . An exclusively breastfed infant may have loose or liquid stools that are “mustard” yellow to “gold” yellow in color. Healthy, adequately nourished breastfed babies will have several bowel movements per day.

🤱 Texture and consistency of stools : Hard stools are a sign of constipation and indicate dehydration or even diet-related problems. If this occurs, contact your pediatrician or dial 15 in case of pain in your child.

The breastfeeding pump: A good option

The breast pump is an excellent option that combines the benefits of breast milk with the ability to measure the exact amount of milk your baby is taking. By expressing your milk, you can give it from a bottle , which gives you greater flexibility and reassures you about the quantity of milk ingested by your child. It can also make feedings easier to manage, especially if you have to be away or if other people are involved in your baby's meals.

Monitoring the weight curve

Steady weight gain is a sign that a baby is healthy and getting enough nutrients to thrive. Regular monitoring of your baby's weight is recommended, particularly during scheduled pediatric visits.

Did you know ? 📈 These weight charts are based on data collected from a population of healthy children and serve as a reference to determine if your baby is gaining weight appropriately. All babies develop at their own pace, so there may be normal fluctuations in the weight curve.

In summary

Breastfeeding is a natural experience that can cause anxiety and doubts about your baby's nutritional satisfaction.

Learning to recognize the signs of satiety and the state of diapers is often enough to brush aside your fears and check that your child is eating enough.

The medical profession for its part ensures rigorous monitoring each month of the weight acquired , the main advice that we could give you to conclude this article is the following: trust yourself! 😉

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