If you’re reading this… you’re probably in a chair or on the bed under a baby who is feeding nonstop. If you’re wondering can babies cluster feed all day, then this post will tell you.
Whew, you’ve had a baby and you’re loving the snuggles and the smell of baby’s head. And it’s all so lovely. Except the not sleeping, the constant nursing, the Twilight Zone fog of newborn life and the general sense that time has gone out the window.
This is some form of “deep time” that happens. And, don’t worry, it’ll pass.
But on to the focus of this test which is… can baby really feed all day long?
Can Babies Cluster Feed All Day?
No, babies cannot feed nonstop all day long. Can babies feed every two hours all day during a growth spurt? Yes. Can they feed every hour if they are only snacking at the breast and not really taking full feeds? Again, yes. Is this optimal? No.
If baby were taking full feeds every hour they’d only manage to do this a few times before they start refusing the milk. They’ll purse their lips and pull away and simply be done. This is what babies do when they are full.
OR, a few little ones will simply keep eating and then spit up excessively.
The real question: are they actually feeding?
If a baby is attached to the breast for hours and hours at a time they are not feeding that whole time. Their tummies can’t handle it and they don’t need that much milk. If they are simply sucking and sucking and sucking, they’re using you as a pacifier.
And this may be okay with you!
But if it isn’t, if you have other children, or a job, or errands to run, then you can always offer a pacifier to help baby meet their needs for sucking. Some babies will suck away all day and they are great candidates for a pacifier.
Other babies simply want the comfort that comes with being at mom’s breast. Of course, it’s such a sweet place for them. And for mom. The issue comes when mom feels trapped and wants to stop nursing because it feels overwhelming.
It doesn’t have to be.
Newborn Settling Guide
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Don’t let your newborn feed all day
Baby can stay close to you, even baby wearing if that’s your jam, without being attached to the breast all day. Aside from the physical discomfort for you, the D-Mer that’s likely to occur, baby may also develop a sleep association with being attached to the breast and not sleep elsewhere.
If this isn’t a problem for you, that’s fine. If it becomes an issue then you’ll need to help baby have the full feeds he needs, and then allow him some awake time not at the breast before putting him down into a safe sleep space.
Get all the info you need about the types of cluster feeds, when to start, and how to stop, right here.
Nap Times Cheat Sheet
Learn how to space naps, how many a day per age, best times, etc. and get your nap game ON!
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