Sunday, November 22, 2009

How Much Is Too Much

I had this problem and maybe a lot of moms have it still too... as to how much should the baby be fed and is the baby getting enough... no matter how much reassurance the doctor, the near and dear would give, a mom would still be worried as to the intake of the baby. If the baby is breast-fed then becomes more concerning 'cos we would not really know the intake. The simple answer is DONT WORRY, THE BABY WILL LET YOU KNOW

***If the baby is sleeping well, being non fussy, getting enough rest, she is feeding fine.
***If the baby is hungry and not getting enough, she will surely let you know bringing the roof down, so do not worry.
***If the baby is sleeping midway through feeding, keep trying after some time when she wakes up.
***If the baby is gaining adequate weight, then there is absolutely no issue at all... (I do not have a digital scale to weigh the baby, so I use mine. Like I take my weight first and then take the weight again with the baby, deduct the previous one and get the rough weight of the kiddo).. we do not know the exact to the point value but it would surely give an idea if is fluctuating too much.

The rough feeding guidelines in the sheet my doc gave me are (alternatively, you will find the nutrition guidelines on the formula pack that you are using for the baby).
0 to 1 week 2 oz --- 7 to 8 times a day.
1 to 2 weeks 3 oz --- 6 to 7 times a day.
3 to 4 weeks 4 oz --- 6 to 7 times a day.
1 to 2 months 5 oz --- 5 to 6 times a day.
2 to 4 months 6 oz --- 5 to 6 times a day.
******* (around 4th month most of us start the baby on solid feeds which means that there is less of drinking milk and some times they might even stop milk completely for a day or two), so we need to ensure that the baby is receiving adequate nutrition in any which way. If the baby is not receiving milk in the day, try feeding her at night or compensate it with mixing the milk in the foods/cereal she is eating, maybe we can give milkshakes/mix fruit pulp with milk, any way to get some milk in :).).
4 to 6 months 7 oz --- 4 to 5 times a day.
7 to 12 months 8 oz -- 4 times.

This should be more than enough and this counting would be easier if the baby is bottle-fed or fed expressed breast milk. However, if the baby is taking more, there is absolutely no issue about it. It depends on the baby's capacity, her metabolism, her body needs and all that. The feed times also might vary.. Initially I was asked to feed the baby every 2 hours or so about an ounce or so as much as she could drink but since the kid was too sleepy, she would drink more at a lengthy interval, which was also fine as per the doctor.

If the baby is not latching and for some reason, we are feeding expressed milk, it should be fine. The color and consistency wary from time to time from watery to white depending on the let down. The initial flow would be watery and then get thicker with the time and as the baby sucks or as we keep expressing. So, even if it is watery and looks pale yellow or watery, there is absolutely no need to worry.

Also, if the baby is drinking more, there is no need to worry about sugar levels, fat levels or anything.. it is just fine. Just imagine if the baby were breastfeeding we would not know how much is being fed, it could be more than we can imagine or want to give. It would depend on the milk letdown and the sucking speed and style of the baby, so there is no way to strictly say okay this is it, we need to stop it here or there is no way to say okay my baby is not taking enough.

Similarly, if the baby is drinking less also, it is not issue of concern as long as she is adequately hydrated, having sufficient wet/dry diapers, and gaining weight.

My baby was mostly bottle-fed, expressed milk fed, and some times she used to latch and basically a half and half breast milk and formula kid, so the only way I could know as to whether she was feeding well was through the number of wet and dry diapers. If the baby is peeing well and pees more than 10 times in a day, then there is no problem. Usually, exclusively breast-fed babies do not have a problem with constipation and it is quite normal to poo with each feed which, I am told by my doctor, is absolutely normal and healthy.

However, the bottle-fed babies are more prone to constipation and pebble-like stool or green colored stool because the formula could be iron-fortified and all that.

When bottle feeding, we need to make sure that each scoop filled is roughly the same amount that is specified for the scoop level.. like for example, I use Farex Infant 2 Formula which says 4.5 g per scoop which needs to be diluted with 1 oz or 30 mL of water. So, if I am preparing the formula, the scoop just needs to be filled and leveled with a knife lightly and should not be stuffed. Over-stuffing the scoop also can be one of the reasons to constipation as the baby is not getting enough of water for the feed.

Net-net, the thing is that there is no specific guide rule that the baby should be fed this much or that much, the baby's body and she herself will give us ample of cues to know that. Ensure that the baby's nutritional needs are met and the only way, we can know it as of now in the newborn stage is the number of diapers and the weight gain.

Dont think too much and enjoy the bonding time!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment