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Got Breast Milk?

The first few weeks after birth are a very special time with your baby. During this time, your body is getting to know your newborn. You may find your baby needs to breastfeed every 1-2 hours. Enjoy this special time together.

Making Milk - It's Natural

During this early period of high demand, when you are breastfeeding so frequently, your breasts are "learning" how to make milk and how much to make. Think of this time as building a good foundation for your future milk supply. A good foundation will give you better options in the future, as you return to work or as baby grows.

Make the most of the first month and get your milk supply off to a good start by:

• Breastfeeding – giving your baby breast milk and nothing else.

• Nursing often, 8-12 times in 24 hours.

• Watching for early feeding cues, not the clock.

  • Babies do not feed on a schedule.
  • Sometimes babies will cluster feed.

• Avoiding pacifiers during these early weeks until breastfeeding is well established.

Remember that the most important thing you can do is exclusively breastfeed your baby - no formula, only breast milk. If you have any questions, call your peer counselor.

Babies Have Small Stomachs

When your baby is born, his stomach is only the size of a marble. Colostrum may not seem like much but is the right amount of the best food for your newborn.

On the day he is born, a newborn's stomach is the size of a shooter marble (5-7 ml). By day three, his stomach will be the size of a ping pong ball (22-27 ml). By day ten, his stomach will be the size of his fist or a large egg (60-81 ml).

belly balls

Making Enough Milk?

You're a good mom, so of course you're worried about your baby getting enough to eat.

There are lots of ways to tell if your baby is getting enough milk:

• Your baby nurses 8 to 12 times in 24 hours.

• You feel a gentle tug on your breast (no pain).

•  You and your baby feel relaxed during a feeding.

• You can see and hear your baby swallowing.

• Your baby is gaining weight.

  • Babies lose weight after birth. Your baby should regain his birth weight by 2 weeks old.
  • He should gain about 4 to 8 ounces a week for the first 6 months.

• Your baby is content after feeding.

 • Your baby has plenty of wet and dirty diapers.

• Your breasts feel fuller before nursing and softer after.