How do you fit in enough feedings?? — The Bump

How do you fit in enough feedings??

I'm just curious about all your schedules... I am fighting to fit in a 6th feeding each day with my 4.5 month old. My pedi actually said its ok to drop to 5 as I feel like I'm constantly waking her up. She sleeps from 8:30 pm till I wake her up between 7-7:30 depending on my older DD's preschool schedule. Her wake time now is about an hr and 45 minutes. She feeds between 30-45 minutes and if I try to feed her again before a nap she just falls asleep. However, to get 6 in a day, I need to keep her on a 2.5-3 hr schedule which means I'm always waking her up from naps! I also think I need to put her down earlier at night given her cues and the fact that I have to wake her each morning, but that would mean possibly dropping to 5 feedings. And shes hardly interested in 1 of her evening feedings. She's doing well- she gained 4 lbs on 2 months. Here is a general idea of our day:
7:30 feed
10- wake to feed
1:00 wake to feed
4- feed
6, 6:30 feed (hardly interested)
7:45 feed
4.5 months just seems early to me to drop to 5, but I fear I'm not letting her get enough sleep!

Re: How do you fit in enough feedings??

  • VitaLunaVitaLuna
    Eighth Anniversary 250 Answers 2500 Comments 500 Love Its
    edited December 2013
    Why are you waking her to feed? If she's gaining well and having enough dirty/wet diapers, there's no reason to wake her up. There's no magic number on how many times you have to feed LO in a day.

    ETA: I should say why are you waking her during the day. Have you tried letting her go to see when she'll wake on her own? My LO is 4mo and can go 3.5-4h between feeds (waking up on her own).



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  • Pedi assumed the same regarding how much she must take per feeding. Specially given how long she still nurses. I understand there's no magic number, but 5 feedings at 4.5 months just seems light!! I'll try for a few days maybe and see how she does. I'm dropping my before bed pump too now, hoping that that drop AND a dropped feeding so close together doesn't hurt my supply. Guessing if I let her drop a feeding though, she'll very quickly make up for it at other feedings.
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  • I would see if you can do a weighed feeding to see how much she is getting in one feeding.  5 is really low for 4.5 months. 
    DD always fed both before and after naps at that age. (ie wake up, eat, play, eat, sleep, wake up, eat, play, eat, sleep etc). I'm not sure what the problem is if she falls asleep nursing before a nap?

    Could you maybe try a dream feed?  4.5 mo is really young for a baby to be going 12 hours without nursing.

    She won't dream feed- I've tried several times- she wont latch on and if I stir her some to eat, she nurses for like one minute and pushes away. The girl likes her beauty sleep! Feeding before naps has actually been counter productive- she'll doze off a few minutes in, not taking a full feeding. Then when she wakes, she won't take a full feeding- she nurse for a few minutes, then refuse- so it turns out to be 2 mini sessions instead of a goo solid feeding. This snacking ends up continuing through the day and doesn't seem as productive. Even if she took a full feeding before a nap- if I feed her when she woke and again before she slept, there would only be a few minutes between sessions given iow long she takes!! Lol!
    We have lots of soaking wet diapers (cloth so it's easy to see how wet), she has gone from 15th percentile at birth to almost 50th at 4 month check despite this 12 hr pattern since 6 weeks. While its not a great indication, if I pump in lieu of a feeding, I easily get 5.5-6.5 oz, often more. If I pump -before bed, I get almost 7. Knowing she's more efficient, I hope she's just a binger at meals!!
  • If she is gaining and content, I would let her eat when she wants. Maybe you will get better feeds if you are not waking her.
  • My DD is only 3.5 months and she gets 6 feedings a day, one of them being a light dream feed about an hour and a half to 2 hours after her bedtime. If she's gaining well at her 4 month appointment, I will keep with this, and gradually drop the dream feed in the next month. I wouldn't worry if she's having enough wet diapers and gaining well. My DD has been such an effoenent eater since 4 weeks, so I'm confident that she's getting enough milk. Yours may be the same way.
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  • edited December 2013
    Yesterday, my (almost) 5 month old, only had 4 feedings. Over the last couple of weeks, he has started stretching out times between feeds due to a longer morning nap and will will have anywhere between 4-6 feedings. He has plenty of wet/poppy diapers, is gaining well and I've never had supply issues, so I'm not concerned. Last night and the night before, he STTN so his last feeding was 6:30p and he didn't wake to eat until 8a in the morning. Sometimes he will wake at night to eat, but I have never done a dream feed or woken him to eat. Do what you feel that your baby needs, but I don't see why you need to force an extra feeding unless there is a medical issue.

    ETA: I did wake him to eat when he was a newborn, but haven't since he passed his birth weight.
  • You girls are making me feel better! Thanks!
  • Interesting because we have a similar issue going on over here!  So this thread also makes me feel better. My DS was 3.5 months old when I realized he went down to 5 or sometimes 6 feedings per day and was STTN 12 hours. He had plenty of wet and dirty diapers and seemed happy and meeting milestones. At 4m appointment it become known he had gained weight but low on the curve. Pedi wanted to see more weight gain and frankly so did I even though he looked so good and other than the number on the scale, he appeared to be really thriving.  I added a dream feed for a month and used my MOTN pumped milk to supplement during the day because he would take a bottle anytime, even after having JUST breastfed. He thinks bottles are fun or something.  Anyway, weight improved. Eventually I had to drop the dream feed because he wouldn't go back to sleep after.... he would stay awake for hours and I'd have to feed him again as part of the bedtime routine to get him to go back to sleep. At 5 months old I wasn't about to get him used to that!  So.... I was waking him earlier in the day and squeezing in a 6th or 7th feed whenever I could but also, had to wake him from naps or would be tempted to to get in the extra feed. Kinda stressful isn't it?  But like you, it's almost as if he's trying to drop back down to 5 again.  He also won't nurse before a nap either. Well, he will but then when he wakes an hour or so later he's not interested.  I'm also hoping that he's getting what he needs so I'm weighing him every few weeks to make sure the scale is still going up. (and feeding high fat solid foods ;) ) Regardless of solids intake, he still seems to nurse the same.  (and frankly, he would eat more if I offered it to him but I'm afraid of him filling up on solids and not nursing enough so I limit solids at the moment)  I swear this boy has a hallow leg! 

  • BTW, if I'm not mistaken, breastmilk fat and calorie content goes up as baby gets older so the # oz stays about the same and the average is about 25 oz per day. So if you think she's getting 5oz per feeding then that's good!  I believe I read this on Kellymom.

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