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Warm Weather & Breastfeeding, do/should you give water?

(19 Posts)
rrreow Sat 04-Jun-11 13:35:05

My DS is 4 weeks and I am breastfeeding him on demand. Up till now he's been having about 6-8 feeds a day, is putting on weight and has plenty of wet & dirty nappies each day.

Yesterday it was quite hot and I noticed he wanted to nurse more often but for shorter periods of time, presumably because he was thirsty but not necessarily hungry (?). He also had less wet nappies than usual.

My health visitor mentioned the other day that when the weather is hot, you can give some water, but she didn't give much details. Should I give him some water in this case? If yes, how do I know how much, and how & when do I give it to him?

RightUpMyRue Sat 04-Jun-11 13:39:36

There is absolutely no need to give any else for approximately the first 6 months of life. This includes water, even if it's really hot.

Your baby did precisely what was right for him yesterday, he drank more milk, perfect.

imissbluesky Sat 04-Jun-11 13:42:54

I had DS1 whilst living in South Africa. He was born in the middle of summer, it gets v hot, and never gave water, just breastfed as much and as often as he liked.

Loopymumsy Sat 04-Jun-11 14:17:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

KristinaM Sat 04-Jun-11 14:22:07

No, O need for water. Your baby is very clever. Congratulate yourselfsmile

rrreow Sat 04-Jun-11 15:20:31

Great, thanks for the responses everyone. We'll just keep doing what we've been doing.

AngelDog Sat 04-Jun-11 18:19:39

The fuller the breast, the more 'watery' the milk (and the emptier the breast, the fattier the milk). If you're feeding on cue, then when it's hot, your baby will do just as you did yesterday - lots of smaller feeds which means more watery milk. Your baby & breasts are amazing. Keep up the good work. smile

lilham Sat 04-Jun-11 19:00:42

The bf councillor from my NCT class tell us not to give water. The main reason being baby's stomach is very small. It's far too easy to fill up baby's stomach with water and they won't be hungry for milk. Unless your little one is overweight it's better to let them have a bit more calories than not enough isn't it?

Wigeon Sat 04-Jun-11 19:09:54

My DD2 is 3 weeks old and fed loads yesterday and today - mostly shortish feeds - reassured that others LOs are doing the same! I was wondering what was up (although I'm feeding on demand, she hadn't usually demanded that often) until DH suggested that since it was hot she might just be thirsty! smile.

Pilchardnpoppy Sat 04-Jun-11 19:12:05

No, don't give water. Just offer breastmilk more often.

TruthSweet Sat 04-Jun-11 19:33:12

Also, giving water can be dangerous to young babies as it can unbalance the electrolytes in the body and cause water intoxication. Anyone, even adults, can get it when they drink far more water than they need but it is easier to give too much water to a baby given their size and love of sucking.

Here for more details.

greeneone12 Sat 04-Jun-11 19:47:32

So once they are over 6 months they 'do' need water rightupmyrue?

LaWeasel Sat 04-Jun-11 20:02:24

Not necessarily. As I understand it depends on how much and what style of solids they are eating after 6months.

Basically if they are refusing water I would assume it means they don't need/want it unless you can see other signs of baby being dehydrated, like not enough wet nappies or dark coloured wee.

gourd Sat 04-Jun-11 20:23:15

No water at all before they start eating solids - and then it will be a gradual thing as they'll still be getting most nutrition from milk. It's only really when they start dropping milk feeds and eating significant amounts that the water intake goes up.

greeneone12 Sat 04-Jun-11 20:37:17

LaWeasel she is really having a hard time going to the loo so I figure she needs more water sad

LadyOfTheCuntryManor Sat 04-Jun-11 22:47:09

I always thought if you breastfed baby got all it needed to drink. If you formula feed then you need to offer water on hot days.

I ebf without water this time last year when it was warm and my ds survived.

LaWeasel Sun 05-Jun-11 12:17:07

greeneone - if you are concerned I would go to see a nurse or GP. Even if it's not dehydration that's the problem, struggling to go to the loo could be lots of things and they will have advice/ideas about what to do next.

KristinaM Sun 05-Jun-11 16:13:40

greenone, please go to your gp if your baby is constipated

AngelDog Sun 05-Jun-11 21:04:53

greenone, IIRC Kellymom recommends offering water with solids to avoid constipation, but no need for any more water to be offered at other times.

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