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Breastfeeding Tips and Information on Growth and Development including
growth spurts, how good baby syndrome can impede growth, and
normal weight gain at 0-6 months, 6-12 months, 12-24 months
and 24-36 months. Information courtesy of Lactation Connection
{The Nursing Mother's Milk Supply} where you will
find all your breastfeeding gear.

Good Baby Syndrome
Good baby syndrome is defined as when babies seldom cry which sounds
like a dream, but it can be a disaster if the baby does not cry or fuss to be fed.
It is imperative that newborns under 6 months get 20 minutes of swallowing
8 times per day. Do not let these babies fool you into thinking they are just
efficient enough to feed in 5-10 minutes. The proof is always in the pudding.
These infants should be gaining 5-7 oz per week. Also, these babies need
to be guided to feed 10-12 times per day during typical growth spurt ages
such as normally occur at 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months and 6 months.
After 6 months, they should still be feeding 5 times per day and gaining
4-6 oz per week.


Growth Spurts

You can almost set your watch by a baby's growth spurt. The first one
occurs anywhere from 10 days to 3 weeks of age. The following ones
come at 6 weeks, 3 months, and 6 months. When babies go through
growth spurts, their feeding times change from every two to three hours
to every hour on the hour. You just finish feeding them and they go rooting
around again and act like they are still hungry. During the 3 week growth
spurt, you can definitely see that the baby is pooping 3+ times daily and
having lots of wet diapers. What goes in, must come out, so we know the
baby is getting enough. The 6 week growth spurt can be more troublesome
because at that time their digestive system matures and they have fewer dirty
diapers. Some babies only have one every 3-5 days. Don't dismay, you can
still tell he/she has plenty of fluids by the fact that the baby is still having six
to eight pale wet diapers daily. The three month and six month growth spurts
are pretty typical. Growth spurts usually only last 5 days if you don't interfere
with imposed schedules and supplements. Make sure to keep drinking to thirst
and taking your prenatal vitamins. If you want a boost for your milk supply,
lactation supplements taken in the appropriate dosage and potency can help.

Milk Intake and Weight Gain at 0-6 months
Newborns typically loose 8-10% of their birth weight in the first week and then
gain 5-7 oz per week from 2 weeks until 6 months. To calculate how much breast
milk to leave for your baby or to calculate your milk supply, take your baby's weigh,
multiply by 2.5. That gives you the number of oz your baby requires per day. Then
divide by the number of feedings per day, typically 8. When determining the baby's
weight, round up to the quarter pound. For example, for a baby who is 8 lbs 4 oz,
you would multiply 8.25 x 2.5 = 20.625. Divide that by 8 feedings and you get 2.57
oz per feeding. You would round up to 2 3/4 -3 oz to leave for your baby. If you are
working outside the home, always leave an extra frozen bottle for growth spurts
or spills.

Milk Intake and Weight Gain at 6-12 months
For babies age 6-12 months who are also are solids three times per day, milk intake
is typically 24-32 oz and not determined by the calculation for younger infants.
Typical weight gain is 3-5 oz per week.


Milk Intake and Weight Gain at 12-24 months

For babies 12 months who weigh 20 lbs or more, should take in 16-20 oz of milk;
more if they are underweight. Normal weight gain during this period is 2 oz per week.
A typical schedule would be nursing or feeding expressed milk 4 x daily, feeding solids
3 x daily with one or two healthy snacks in between. If you are weaning to cows milk,
it should be whole milk unless advised by your pediatrician otherwise.

Milk Intake and Weight Gain at 24-36 months

For toddlers 2-3 years, typical milk intake is 3 servings per day. After 24 months,
most pediatricians recommend switching to 2% milk if you have weaned from breast
milk. Toddlers 24-36 months should gain approximately 1 oz per week and eat
3 meals per day with one healthy snack.


Typical Weight Gain for Breastfed Babies

0-3 weeks: regain birth weight

3 weeks - 6 months: 5-7 oz per week

6 - 12 months: 4-6 oz per week

12-24 months: 2 oz per week

24-36 months: 1 oz per week

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