How to ensure your baby is getting full feeds

This article is part of New Kind’s postpartum doula’s best sleep tips.

New Kind

Good sleep and good feeds go hand in hand! To help your baby get longer stretches of sleep at night, one of our goals is to make sure your baby is getting enough calories during the day. 

We recommend feeding your baby every 2.5 - 3 hours during the day

It’s perfectly fine to wake your baby up from naps during the day to feed them...especially if it means more nighttime sleep for everyone! The exception to this recommendation is during the first week for breastfeeding parents when you will need to breastfeed more frequently to help establish your milk supply and get your baby back up to their birth weight. 

Clues that your baby is getting full feeds: 
  • Their weight gain is on track, according to their pediatrician. 
  • Your baby has an age appropriate amount of wet/poop diapers. Keep track of soiled diapers with an app or journal so it’s easy to review. 
  • The inside of their bottom lip is moist and smooth.
  • After 2 weeks old, baby is alert for at least 20 minutes a few times a day.
  • Baby seems satisfied and can go 2-3 hours between feedings after they’re reached their birth weight. 

For breastfed babies: 
  • Breasts are softer after nursing. 
  • Your baby nurses 10-20 min per side AND you can hear swallowing.

Clues that your baby is hungry: 
  • Alertness
  • Crying
  • Fussiness
  • Lip-smacking
  • Opening and closing their mouth
  • Putting hands or fists to their mouth
  • Rooting, a reflex that prompts babies to turn their heads from side to side in search of the nipple
  • Sucking on hands or fists

When to seek additional support

Keep your pediatrician in the loop on your breastfeeding questions and challenges. If you are still worried about baby’s milk intake or you’re having any kind of pain or discomfort that lasts more than a day or two, you should consider seeking help from a lactation consultant. Your pediatrician can refer you, or you can become a member of New Kind to get unlimited access to lactation consultants (IBCLC) on our team. 


Become a member to get unlimited, 1-on-1 support from a dedicated postpartum doula. New Kind’s doulas are trained to help you navigate all aspects of new parenthood, including sleep challenges, feeding issues, stress management, and postpartum recovery.

You’ve got this, and we’ve got you.

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