my son isn't feeding as long as he should be...

Anna-marie - posted on 03/06/2010 ( 15 moms have responded )




my boy is 4 months old,. breastfeeding came very naturally for both of us. recently... he is only feeding for 5 minutes each breast, and to me this means he's not getting that 'fatty' milk that he needs. he feeds every 3-4 hours which is fine. he is in bed by 7pm and used to sleep until 2ish, but since his shorter feeds, he now needs a 10pm feed too!!
he has also been vomiting quite a bit, i'm not eating anything different.
people have been saying to try him on formula before bed..
what do you think is going on??
thanks for reading


Patricia - posted on 03/06/2010




All my kids (3) shortened their feeds to 5 min or so my sons at about the same age and my daughter who was less efficient, when she was older. One of my sons spit up quite a bit but I realized it was b/c of how much and how quickly he was sucking the milk down. They can get to the fatty milk in 5 min. As long as weight gain is appropriate don't worry. Also the change in sleep pattern and the extra feeding he is doing now is very common. Maybe he's in a growth spurt and needs more calories. My youngest slept thru the night from age 1 mon to about 3 months and to my surprise he started waking again for one or two feedings at night again. I would avoid the formula if I were you. It will only serve to decrease the milk supply from less demand. Pumping and feeding with bottle is more inconvenient and will probably not help him get more b/c he is way better at getting milk out of u than a pump. Take care!

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Anais - posted on 01/06/2012




My 3 month old also feeds for 5-7 min on each breast, never longer. Sometimes he doesn't even want the second breast because he got full with the first one. He eats every 3-4 hours also. I go to work at 10pm and that is also his bedtime. I leave 4-5 oz bottles of BM for my hubby to feed him. If he drinks 5oz at 10pm he will wake up at 4am for another bottle. Then we will breastfeed again at 8am once I'm home. I was worried about the same thing you were, but he is gaining weight! He was born premie and only weighed 4 pounds 7 oz. In only 3 months he has gained 8 pounds totaling to 12 pounds 7 oz! So yea my fatty is just getting all his milk within that short period of time. I know I have a fast let down so maybe that's why.

Luisa - posted on 03/11/2010




This is funny, you sound like me! 5 minutes/breast/feed! I worried for so many months, but there is nothign to worry about. Just look at his diapers, as long as he ahs a bout 6 wet diapers/day and 1-2 poop one, you are fine. Some babies, like mine, are very efficient feeders and you must also have a good milk supply or qucik let down. Put these together and you have a 5 minute feed. Trust me this is a good thing!!!!! we are very lucky it takes 5 minutes adn not 1 hour like many other moms!

Nicky - posted on 03/09/2010




Dont worry your baby wont let himself go hungry, maybe he has a sore throat or something ?? i breast-feed but give my baby formula for his last feed before bed it helps them get used to the bottle for when you decide your done with breast-feeding
hope this helps you hun xxxx

Angela - posted on 03/08/2010




Try feeding him a couple feedings on one side and then a couple on the other side. My kids all eat like that and I've had to do this with all of them at some point. They seem to just wait for a let down and mine are lazy nursers. That should help with the spitting up also. Good luck, I'm sure it will get better.

Jessie - posted on 03/08/2010




My son was the same way and I had the same worries. One thing is to talk to someone at La LecheLeague, and try waking him up to finish, keep him on one side until you feel he is getting the good fatty stuff. No Formula! That suggestion is comming from people who havent educated themselves. The LLL has put out a book called The womanly art of breastfeeding that you can get at the bookstore.This is just a faze you will have worked through in no time, and you will be happy with the outcome if you are dilligent, anytime I got overwhelmed with a particular faze (Kelton falling asleep while nursing, teething...) I just remind myself it is a blip in time and before I know it it is over and we are back to smooth sailing. He looks beautiful and healthy in your picture I think you are doing a good job.

Martha - posted on 03/07/2010




Formula would probably make it all a lot worse. Just nurse on one breast each feeding, instead of both if you're concerned about the hindmilk intake. But with the vomiting, i would talk to my child's pedi because that could mean something else. ♥ hope he feels better soon!

Jennifer - posted on 03/07/2010




My son, whose 4.5 months, started doing the same thing right before 4 months. He used to usually feed for 30min at a time, sometimes up to 2 hours. Suddenly, he only wanted to be latched onto each breast for 5 minutes. He'd scream if I tried to put him back on the same breast. I gave up and just started letting him feed for 5 minutes per breast. He was right on track at his 4 month appointment, and he doesn't seem to be any hungrier. I'll see how he is at his 6 month appointment.

Mwrig133 - posted on 03/07/2010




Don't worry about quick feeding! My 10 week old only feeds 5 mins each side and she is piling on the weight. Some babies are just very efficient. However, he may be vomiting because he eats quickly. In terms of the waking, babies start to feed more often when they need you to produce more milk. My first went through various growth spurts, when he'd wake up for about three nights in a row and then he'd go back to sleeping through.

Dani - posted on 03/07/2010




I have a very fast let down so my baby usually only ever feeds for ten minutes. If your worried about him not getting the good stuff just start on the same boob you finished on , its what i do when her dipars turn a lil green ( more fore milk color) and it works great.

[deleted account]

My daughter only feeds for about 5 minutes or so each breast ( if I'm lucky) I have a very fast let down and she is getting even more efficient at getting the milk out, so she actually gets a full feed off one breast .. i have to pump the other one to make sure my milk supply keeps up.

I wouldn't worry about the time, but rather the weight gain. As long as he is gaining weight, then he's probably getting what he needs from you. The change in sleep patterns is probably due to growth spurts and an increase metabolism. Formula won't give your baby what he needs in comparison to your breast milk. The vomiting could be due to an allergy to cows milk that may be passed through to your breast milk, but if your worried about it, I would take him to a doctor.... I hope that helps ..good luck

Beck - posted on 03/06/2010




My son was doing the same at that age and I remember ringing the breast feeding helpline because I also didn't think it was long enough. They ensured me he was just a 'very good sucker' or something along those lines. He is now 12mths and is still feeding. Very healthy and the perfect size.

Ashley - posted on 03/06/2010




babies go through phases like this. u shouldn't worry and you really should not give him formula. some babies just don't need to nurse as long, but if u r worried u could go back to feeding every 2-3 hours or just plain nurse more often. As long as he is gaining weight and having wet dipes (one every 4-5 hours) and poopy dipes ( one every 1-3 days and it isn't hard pellets) then he is just fine.

At 4 months babies tend to go through a growth spurt or 2 and sometimes this can cause disturbances in eating. Also, my boys started spitting up sometime between 2.5 and 4 months a lot. I thought their was something wrong like reflux, but they never fussed or acted like they were in pain or anything. They got over it around 7 months and just have had the rare spit up from over eating since.

Babies add feedings and drop feedings throughout their nursing career and that is nothing to worry about either.

he could also be in the beginning stages of teething which can cause disturbances in feeding schedules as well as tummy issues bc of extra slob and drool and sleep disturbance.

Good luck I hope things resolve for u.

Emily - posted on 03/06/2010




It's very, very normal for babies to start nursing less at that age. It just means that baby has become more efficient at getting milk out. He is still getting the same amount, it just takes less time. It also sounds like maybe your baby is going through a growth spurt. I urge you to NOT give formula. That will only make things worse. Not sure about the vomitting... depends how much it is.. but that may be a topic for your baby's doctor.

Selia - posted on 03/06/2010




He might be doing the shorter feeds to minimize vomiting, it is easier to keep down a smaller amt. Plus, he might be getting more efficient at getting the milk out. As long as he's gaining normally, don't be concerned and I'd definitely avoid the formula. If you really want to get him to have more try giving him pumped breast milk. Also consider things in your diet that might upset his stomach and cause vomiting, like dairy.

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