Home Health Check out how long should you breastfeed your little one..

Check out how long should you breastfeed your little one..

Being a mother comes up with a lot of intricate responsibilities, and breastfeeding can be considered as one of them. The journey of breastfeeding might be different for different mothers. For some, the breast feeding phase might be quite simple. On the other hand, others might find it quite difficult to adjust with the different aspects of breastfeeding. A lot of new mothers might want to know how long should you breastfeed your little one.

The phase of breastfeeding begins from the moment your baby is born, and it might last for quite a long period of time. Previously, women were mostly homemakers, and thus, they could get plenty of time to look after their children. But, now the scenario has totally changed, and most women are handling both office, as well as home efficiently.

As a result, it might not be possible for them to breastfeed their little one for a prolonged period of time. Hence, they might often wonder how long breastfeeding is mandatory for the proper growth and development of their little one. Thereafter, they might look for other efficient means such as formula milk.

So, if you are a new mother, and are worried about all these things, then you should definitely go through this discussion. Here, you will be able to find out all the necessary details concerning the duration of breastfeeding.

How long should you breastfeed your little one?

  • According to a number of renowned experts, the new born babies must be breastfed exclusively for the first six months after their birth. By exclusive breastfeeding we mean that they should only be given breast milk, and you should avoid giving them formula milk, juice, water, foods, etc.
  • Thereafter, it will be highly beneficial if you are able to continue breastfeeding for 2 years and beyond. As we all know, breast milk is very nutritious, and if you continue to breastfeed your baby, then your baby will be able to enjoy a number of health benefits.
  • However, it needs to be kept in mind that breastfeeding up to 2 years and beyond is not at all mandatory. If it works for both you and your baby, then it is definitely good. But, if you find it quite difficult to manage breastfeeding because of your work, or busy schedules, then you can switch to other means such as formula milk.
  • In most cases, it has been observed that mother’s try to pump and store their breast milk in the refrigerator. Thereafter, they use this milk, as and when required. This is also an excellent idea for all those working mothers out there who are forced to stay outside for a long period of time.
  • Thus, we can ascertain that breastfeeding your baby from birth to six months is compulsory, and thereafter, you can choose to continue or discontinue as per your individual preferences. After six months of age, you will be able to introduce a number of other things into your baby’s diet.

See how often should you breastfeed your baby

If you are wondering how long should you breastfeed your little one, then you might also be interested to find out how often you should be breastfeeding.

  • It must be kept in mind that breast milk is easily digested, and as a result, the newborns tend to feel hungry quite often. So, it is highly recommended that you feed your newborn baby at least 8–12 times a day.
  • Frequent feedings can be considered as quite beneficial because it helps a lot in stimulating the milk production during the initial weeks. Increased feeding will signal the body to produce more milk for the newborn.
  • During the initial days after birth, breastfeeding can get quite unpredictable. Experts suggest that during this phase breastfeeding should be carried out on demand. In other words, you should be feeding your baby whenever he or she is hungry.
  • In most cases, you will have to breastfeed your baby every 1-1/2 to 3 hours. There exist a lot of variations in these time intervals, and some babies might feed every 90 minutes. On the other hand, others might go 2–3 hours without feeding. However, you should keep in mind that new born babies should not go without feeding for more than 4 hours.
  • When the baby is about 1–2 months old, he or she should be breastfeed for 7–9 times daily. It is appropriate to say that once the newborns get older, they tend to breastfeed less often. In addition to that, you will also be able to observe a more predictable schedule.

Find out how long does nursing take

Now that we know how long should you breastfeed your little one, and how often you should breastfeed your baby, let’s find out how long nursing takes.

  • It has been observed that the newborn babies tend to nurse for up to 20 minutes or longer than that on one or both breasts. Gradually with time, they get more skilled at breastfeeding, and might take 5–10 minutes on each breast.
  • The nursing time might vary considerably from one baby to another and it depends upon a number of factors such as, the milk flow rate, milk supply, let-down reflex, baby’s latch, baby’s feeding habit, etc. If the baby is sleeping or distracted then he or she might take more time to finish feeding.

Conclusion

We have discussed how long should you breastfeed your little one, how often you should breastfeed your baby, as well as how long does nursing take. You should keep in mind that when the babies go through a period of rapid growth, they will tend to feed more than normal. Such periods of growth spurts usually happen when the baby is 7–14 days old, 2 months old, 4 months old, and 6 months old. During these periods, the baby will want to feed more than usual, and this might concern the mother a lot. But, there is nothing to worry, and everything will get back to normal once this phase is over.

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