Nursing Gets Easier!
During my rounds as a Lactation Consultant I often come across exhausted new mothers . They often look as if they are questioning how long they can continue nursing. After a few minutes of talking I soon know why. Nursing a newborn is hard, exhausting work! Babies eat often and for very long periods of time. It is not uncommon for an infant who is two days old, to nurse for upwards of an hour. They will often nurse every one and half hours. This is called cluster feeding. They may eat like this for a couple feedings in a row and then sleep for a few hours. These time consuming feedings will slowly start to become shorter into the end of the second week of life. I can reassure my clients that nursing won't always be so exhausting. The milk volume increases over time, and the baby learns how to nurse more effectively. Most new mothers are encouraged to learn about the process and to realize that there is a light at the end of the tunnel! The baby will still need to eat frequently but not necessarily for an hour. I should mention that during growth spurts, feeding may become longer and more frequent again for a few days.
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