Breastfeeding: When To Feed Your Baby

Are you a new mom wondering how frequently you must feed your precious little one? Our expert shares exclusive tips on baby feeding cues.

By Team ParentCircle

Breastfeeding: When To Feed Your Baby

On the occasion of World Breastfeeding Week, Dr Sonali Santhanam, Lactation Consultant, Motherhood Hospital explains how often mothers must feed their newborns. She also talks about the cues that will help a new mother recognise that her baby is hungry and needs a feed.

Here is what Dr Santhanam says: 

The first two weeks after birth, babies are generally quite sleepy. However, you want to make sure that you wake your baby up every two to three hours. You can do so with the help of skin-to-skin contact, which enables your baby to wake up for the feed.

It is normal for babies to lose some weight in the first week after birth. However, in most cases, babies regain birth weight by the second week. So, once your baby is about two weeks old, you can allow your baby to feed on demand, which means you are going to feed your baby whenever they demonstrate signs of hunger.

Usually, the early signs of hunger are:
1. Moving the head from side-to-side
2. Smacking the lips
3. Opening and closing their mouth


When babies start bringing their hand to their mouth, it is a sign that they are hungry. Try to feed them within this window, or they might start to cry. Also, it is a little harder to get them to latch on to the breast, because you know they are not going to have the patience to really come into position and have a good latch.

So, it’s very important to feed your baby every two hours or on cue. And this usually happens about 8–10 times in a twenty-four-hour period.

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