Newborns feed very, very frequently, but this isn’t a problem to be solved – it’s perfectly natural! Your newborn’s tummy is quite small, so it’s understandable that he needs to eat often.
During these growth spurts, it will feel like your newborn is feeding almost constantly (and like when she’s not feeding, she’s sleeping). This is 100% normal – feed your newborn as often as she needs it, as the extra nourishment is important during the growth spurt.
Upon entry into the air-breathing world, without the nutrition and oxygenation via the umbilical cord, the must begin to adjust to life outside the . Newborns can feel all different sensations, but respond most enthusiastically to soft stroking, cuddling and caressing. Gentle rocking back and forth often calms a crying infant, as do massages and warm baths. Newborns can be comforted by nursing, or may need to comfort themselves by sucking their thumb, or a . The need to suckle is instinctive (see ) and allows newborns to feed.
A recent study is dispelling the perception that breastfeeding mothers get less sleep than mothers who feed their newborns formula. Overall, new moms have a belief that they are sacrificing sleep to breastfeed, and sometimes this belief may influence their decision on newborn feeding. The study examined the first three post partum months and used 3 different groups of newborns: those that were breastfed exclusively, those that fed formula exclusively and those that used a combination of both. A number of sleep characteristics, including total sleep time and number of night-time awakenings were measured and overall the study showed no difference between the groups.