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Newborn only feeding for short periods

(5 Posts)
Bellamuerte Fri 09-Feb-18 19:32:46

My baby is a week old and will only feed for a maximum duration of 5-10 minutes, sometimes 15 minutes at most. I've read that he should be feeding for up to 30-40 minutes at a time! So I'm concerned that he isn't getting enough to eat. My milk supply didn't come in for about five days so he lost quite a bit of weight (12%), although he has started to regain a bit now (last measured at 8% under birth weight, so he has gained back 4%).

I usually manage to persuade him to eat every 2-4 hours but I sometimes struggle to wake him up to feed. He tends to feed for longer if he's woken up by himself. I try to give him the breast more frequently but he clamps his mouth shut because he doesn't want it. Especially if he's just fed for 5-10 minutes and I'm trying to persuade him to have a bit more.

Can anyone advise? I don't want to starve him but can't feed him if he refuses to eat!

TeddyIsaHe Tue 13-Feb-18 08:05:56

Babies are tough in the beginning! Their tummies are only tiny, and as he’s gaining back his lost weight I’d say he’s just a very efficient feeder.

Is he still having plenty of wet and dirty nappies? Does he seem settled between feeds? Do you offer the other breast after every feed? Just a bit more info needed to help you!

LuxuryMilk Tue 13-Feb-18 08:12:35

Both of mine only fed for 20 minutes max each time so it can be ok.
Main things to look out for is are they gaining weight? Are they having plenty of wet nappies?
When they finish after the short feed try lifting their little arm up. If it’s tense then they’re probably still hungry. If it’s floppy then they’re more than likely satisfied with what they’ve had.

Don’t try and stress yourself by aiming for longer feeds within a few days. It’s a gradual process and you are both still learning.

Can you feel if he’s going long enough to get the hind milk? If not try pumping a bit first to get rid of the first rush of fore milk and then letting him on for the creamier hind milk.

Freddiesgirl Tue 13-Feb-18 08:17:41

My LO was premature and so we had a right struggle feeding and spent a lot of time with a paediatrician- she said the best babies feed for only 5-10 minutes! So you might a good one!!
Follow his lead, but speak to your HV and get him weighed if you're worried.

cecinestpasunepipe Tue 13-Feb-18 08:32:34

My daughter used to only feed for a few minutes at a time as a newborn before falling asleep and I was very concerned, as was the midwife. Then they weighed her before and after a feed, and it was found that she was getting in five minutes from one side what she was "supposed" to be getting from fifteen minutes on each side! If your baby is settled and gaining weight, I don't think you need to worry.

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