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?
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.
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?
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! .
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.
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.
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.