5 Signs Your Newborn Is Getting Enough Food

 5 Signs Your Newborn Is Getting Enough Food

As a new parent, you want to ensure that your baby is getting enough nourishment to support their growth and development. Even though your newborn can’t tell you in words that they’re hungry, if you pay attention, you’ll know when they’re well-fed and content.

At Laurel Pediatric & Teen Medical Center, Dr. Ugonma Okparaocha, MD, provides comprehensive pediatric care for infants, children, and teens in Bel Air, Maryland. When you need to make informed decisions about your child’s health, our team is here to support you at every stage of their life.

Let’s take a look at five simple ways to determine whether your newborn is getting enough food.

1. Keep track of the length and frequency of feedings

During the first month of life, babies typically feed every 2-3 hours, and even more frequently during growth spurts. Whether you’re nursing or bottle-feeding, monitor your newborn's feeding schedule to ensure they’re eating regularly.

Breast-fed babies tend to nurse for 10-20 minutes on each breast. Your breasts may feel softer and less full after nursing. Dr. Okparaocha can offer advice on how much formula to offer your child, however most healthy newborns will finish a bottle without becoming disinterested or frustrated.

2. Pay attention to weight and other milestones

During your baby’s routine check-ups at Laurel Pediatric & Teen Medical Center, we evaluate their weight and growth pattern. If your newborn is steadily gaining weight, it’s a positive sign that they’re eating enough food, even if they have a short period of weight loss immediately after birth.

Your baby also needs nutrients to meet important developmental milestones, such as lifting their head and following objects with their eyes. Our team makes sure that your child is on the right track at every stage of their growth.

3. Monitor diaper changes

A well-hydrated newborn produces about six to eight wet diapers per day. Proper hydration indicates that your baby is consuming enough milk or formula. A change in urine color or frequency can indicate dehydration. If you notice dark urine or orange colored crystals in your child’s diaper, call our office.

In the first months of life, babies generally have soft, yellowish stools. The regularity of bowel movements varies with their development; however, normal-looking stools and passing gas are signs of a healthy digestive system.

4. Assess your baby’s demeanor

After nursing or bottle-feeding, a healthy newborn should appear content and relaxed. Crying or fussing could be a sign that your baby is still hungry. Well-nourished babies tend to be more alert, responsive, and curious when engaging with their surroundings. 

5. Stay in touch

Dr. Okparaocha recommends the American Academy of Pediatrics’ schedule for the first two years of your child’s medical care. Regular visits allow our team to keep a close eye on your baby’s growth and development.

If you have questions or concerns about your newborn’s behavior, sleeping patterns, or eating habits, reach out to us. Call or click to book an appointment for your child at Laurel Pediatric & Teen Medical Center today.

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