Should I track how often I feed my new baby and off which breast? My friend in the US said they recommend using an app that helps you log your feeds and which breast was fed from in the first few weeks.
I don’t think this is necessary. If you have a healthy full term baby who is active and alert when awake, feeding actively throughout his feeds, feeding on demand at least 8 times a day or more and settling to sleep between most feeds, this is a good indication that baby is satisfied and getting enough milk.
If your public health nurse, Midwife or doctor are worried about baby’s weight gain, they may ask for you to jot down this information. But otherwise if all is well, baby is putting on weight, feeding well and having plenty of wet and dirty nappies, then I this is just another unnecessary chore for you to do.
All you need to do in the early days is relax, enjoy this lovely time with your baby, getting to know each other is so important.
You learn so much from just watching and being with your baby, it’s amazing. You will soon know what all those little noises and those little faces mean, and you will soon recognise a little pattern emerging with your baby’s day. You will be more tuned into this if you are watching your baby and not the clock or an app!
You will connect with your baby in a way that no one else can, and additional chores and apps can sometimes get in the way of mums using and following their instincts when it comes to baby care. Keep in tune with your natural mothering instincts, no app’s can ever replace or replicate this.
If you are at all worried about any aspect of baby’s feeding pattern, your maternity unit is available 24/7 for a call for reassurance in the first 6 weeks and your public health nurse is experienced and able to assist you if you have any worries.
Your local breastfeeding support group will offer you some wonderful support and information on any worries you may have about breastfeeding. Here is a link to find support in your area, if you feel it’s still too early to get out and about after having your baby, they can also offer support over the phone, so do give them a call.
How to tell if your baby is getting enough milk
Have a look at this poster, it will give you information on how you tell if your baby is getting enough milk.
And if you find yourself, wondering which side you fed from last, you can use a feeding marker and clip it to whichever side you last fed from, this is a small bra clip with a little ribbon attached, they may be sold with some maternity/breastfeeding bras.
You could also try the squeeze test if you’re not sure where to start before a feed, it’s simply having a feel of the breast to see if you can tell which breast feels the fullest. This will give a good clue as to what side needs to be feed from next.
Enjoy your baby and this time together, they grow so quick.