Not sure my 9 week old baby's drinking enough - exclusively pumping & bottle feeding

(5 Posts)
SomethingLovely Sun 17-Nov-13 20:08:11

DD (9weeks) has only breastmilk, which she drinks from the Medela bottles (so she has to suck to get the milk rather than it just falling in her mouth)...

From birth she was a very regular feeder - went through a phase of demanding milk every three hours dead on, and then every 3.5 hours. She now goes a bit longer at night, you can time 4 hours by her waking, but she doesn't drink any more in quantity, and in the day time she has become less regular and sometimes skips a feed, she can go five hours without wanting milk sometimes. She makes it very clear if she doesn't want the milk, she'll simply spit the bottle out if I try to feed her before she's ready. She also doesn't drink a larger quantity of milk to compensate - she drinks 90-100ml at every feed, give or take, and stops when she's had enough.

She has plenty of wet nappies, but hasn't been weighed since 6 week check so I guess I can't be sure there's even a problem, it just concerns me that she seems to drink less now.

Does breast milk change in composition over the weeks? Is it normal she'd need less? If you compare what she drinks to the recommended quantity of formula it's much less per feed, is that normal? Just looking for any insights that people might have! I guess I'm thinking also about working towards a routine, and if she's to go longer at night between feeds, she'll need to drink more at some other point...

Hope that makes sense! Any thoughts? Thanks...

SomethingLovely Sun 17-Nov-13 20:34:37

God, reading back I sound like a control freak FTM, panicking because their hitherto clockwork baby has become the tiniest bit less regular... I know there could be far more serious things to deal with! Apologies! I am really interested to see what people know about quantities of BM vs formula though, and whether the volume of BM a baby drinks is important - should I just go with the flow?

hettienne Sun 17-Nov-13 20:37:44

Here, try this: kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/pumping/milkcalc/

The amount of milk a breastfed baby takes doesn't increase with age/weight like formula does - generally it stays the same between 1-6 months (except for growth spurts) at an average of 750ml a day.

themightywalrus Mon 18-Nov-13 01:28:59

I exclusively pumped for 12 months with my little girl. I've just checked back through my logs & she seemed to take approx 150ml (sometimes more, sometimes less) every 3 hours. She gradually dropped a night feed as the weeks went on & was sleeping through at 6 months. During this time, she didn't feed any more frequently during the day. But I did start solids at this time, so that might have explained the change. Well done with the pumping, btw! It can be very hard work at times.

SomethingLovely Thu 21-Nov-13 16:58:37

Thank you ladies, belatedly, for yr helpful replies... It's lovely to hear of someone managing to exclusively pump for a full 12 months, well done you! I find opinion to sometimes be a little negative about exclusive pumping working which can be disheartening.

Since I posted, I've made some changes & things are going well! First, I've accepted the fact that she's a four hour baby, and me trying to ply her with milk at 3 or 3.5 hourly intervals was only upsetting her, resulting in snacking rather than proper feeding, and then me never knowing how much she'd actually had. Second, I changed from the Medela bottles with the teats that need to be sucked to ones that make it easier to drink - so now she takes more like 120ml as opposed to 80-100ml (or nothing at all if she was too tired...) She's napping & sleeping well, drinking properly at structured feed times etc - it's a happier household now! Dare I say it, I think we have stumbled into a routine?!

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