6 week old - unpredictable feeding pattern - any advice greatly appreciated

(11 Posts)
NinaGE Tue 24-Sep-13 21:09:14

hi..I'm a new mum so feeling a little out of my depth! I begun bf and then we had to do mixed feeding as I was having problems with pain. we then moved on to mix feeding for a few weeks and now I am feeding him just formula. since being on formula the gaps between feedings vary greatly sometimes its an hour sometimes its four. they are very unpredictable. since 2 pm yesterday his feeds have been regularly spaced out at around 3.5 and 4 hr intervals so i thought we may have turned a corner but then he has just wanted to be fed again an hour after the start of the previous feed. people who I know who ff have said I'm feeding him too much and he should be feeding every four hours but when he's showing the hunger signs what else are you supposed to do? at a bit of a loss really. I can't be the only one to have experienced this and if this is just how somee babies can be then thats fine. I suppose I'm just wondering if anyone else has experienced this. Thanks

MintyDiamonds Tue 24-Sep-13 21:20:59

My dd has never had a set feeding pattern, just fed as and when she's hungry. When she was around 6 weeks old she would cluster feed sometimes and then not want to feed for a while, it was very random and I remember feeling like I was doing it wrong but actually I wasn't I was doing it right as you are!

ExBrightonBell Tue 24-Sep-13 21:38:25

Current NHS advice is to feed on demand if you are formula feeding. Babies do not have a set feeding pattern and the people you know who have ff are wrong (or more charitably, out of date) with their advice. Babies are not supposed to feed every 4 hours - they will feed when they want! This may vary day to day, just to keep us on our toes smile Keep offering a feed when she seems hungry, and don't try and encourage her to finish a feed if she doesn't seem to want it, and you won't be overfeeding her.

Megster9757 Tue 24-Sep-13 21:42:44

Babies generally have a growth spurt at 6 weeks and so naturally need more milk to keep them going. This could be the reason why your little one wants more milk more frequently. Ultimately if you were giving her too much she would sick it up, they get rid of milk they don't one on their own and if yours isn't doing that then she is obviously hungry.

It's abit of a minefield this baby business, if only they could just speak to us and tell us what they want!!

mel191187 Tue 24-Sep-13 23:28:05

My baby is 13 weeks old now and has only in the last three weeks got into a pattern. He was all over the place before, it's because their little stomachs can only take little and often to start with. Just follow what your baby wants and do what you feel is right. X

NinaGE Wed 25-Sep-13 09:11:16

thanks ladies. that's what I've been doing just giving him what he wants when he wants it. I was just panicking I was over feeding him especially as people I know had said so. thanks for the reassurance I'm doing it right smile

MrsLianeB Wed 25-Sep-13 12:00:59

NinaGE my month old has varied from birth on formula sometimes 5oz every 2hrs! My HV advised that he'll tell me when hes hungry and to feed him what he wants. Sometimes it will just be 2 or 3oz inbetween a big feed. The only problem I find is having to make every bottle fresh you cant have it prepared on time and bubs starts screaming whilst i'm trying to make a bottle and cool it enough for him as the pattern is so unpredictable.

KatyN Wed 25-Sep-13 15:04:10

Hello,
Firstly you don't have to make each bottle up fresh. You can store them in the fridge (made up) for 24 hours. (this was the current advice 22 months ago). You'll still have to wait to warm the bottle up, but 7 minutes in the warmer (or 2 in the microwave) is a LOT less than waiting for it to cool down.
Secondly, when I ff my little chap we fed on demand at first then tried to establish a routine. We fed him every 3 hours whether he demanded it or not. (some books say leave it 4 hours but mine couldn't last that long). It was the biggest difference in terms of his sleeping at night.

I'm not sure you can feed him 'too much'. If he's not gaining too much weight and is drinking it all then that's good.

k

lola88 Wed 25-Sep-13 19:06:21

DS fed every 3 hours or less until he went on to solids the 4 hour thing isn't always right.

Does he have a dummy? could he be looking for comfort instead of an actual feed? and does he drain the bottle or leave less than an oz each time?

NinaGE Thu 26-Sep-13 13:17:36

thanks.

lola88...yes he does have a dummy but he won't have it through the night he spits it out. he tends to only really like his dummy in the car seat and sometimes in the afternoon. I had been making up 5oz bottles but on a couple of occasions the other day he drained the bottle and an hour later was hungry so I've started making up 6oz bottles which does seem like a lot for his age. but more often than not he probably leaves just under an oz so I've stuck with it. on his late feed at night its usually more he leaves. my hv thought that I might find he starts taking under 5oz again in a couple of days so go back to making up 5oz bottles. but he always seems really hungry we have to try and get him to slow down because on a couple of occasions he's been sick and then immediately hungry again.

katyN...in terms of sleeping at night did you find that feeding at three hour intervals meant that your lo was more likely to go longer through the night? that's what my hv suggested.

thanks again smile

NinaGE Thu 26-Sep-13 13:23:12

hi mrslianeB...I found that problem too making up bottles fresh it was awful. my hv gave me an nhs booklet that gave instructions on making them up to store in the fridge which I did for a bit. but I panicked about our fridge as it is a bit old. so I bought a tommee tippee perfect prep machine, it makes a bottle up fresh in less time than warming one up out of the fridge...its brilliant!

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