New Blog Series: Ask Ami
At DayOne Baby we work with trusted professionals to share information with new parents and our community. We have launched a new series, “Ask Ami” where parents can ask their questions, big and small. To submit a question, email info@dayonebaby with Ask Ami in the subject line.
Ami Burnham RN, CNM, IBCLC
Ami is a Licensed Midwife, Registered Nurse and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. Ami has worked in San Francisco for the past 10 years as a midwife, lactation consultant, childbirth and prenatal educator as well as a facilitator for new parents groups at DayOne Baby. She has been honored to work with thousands of wonderful families throughout their childbearing years and has attended close to 400 births since beginning her work in midwifery.
Q. How can I tell if my baby is hungry?
A. Getting to know your baby and his/her cues can be one of the most rewarding, and most challenging, parts of new parenting. Feeding cues are often the first to get figured out, as babies display these cues so often.
Crying is often what we think of when we think of a hungry baby, but crying is actually the last sign of hunger. And once a baby has reached this level of distress they often swallow a lot of air, and then fall asleep quickly at the breast or bottle due to exhaustion. This can lead to a vicious cycle of frequent, short feeds and a gassy baby.
It is best to feed your newborn when s/he starts “rooting” around for the breast. This could be a baby rubbing his face and mouth against whomever is holding her or trying to latch onto clothes, fingers, arms or necks. Bringing his/her own fingers to her mouth, lip smacking or just moving her head around with her mouth open, like a baby bird.
If you see any of these signs, or hear her or him rustling about in the night, this is a great time to start a feed. Don’t feel that you need to change a diaper before the feed as this can upset the baby and set him/her to crying, try changing part way through the feed, this can be a good way to wake up a baby to help him/her finish what they’ve started.
These rooting reflexes and strong feeding cues fade around 4 months of age but thankfully as parents you often know them pretty well by that time and have established some rhythm to your day which may help determine feeding times.
To reserve a lactation consultation with Ami call 415-813-1931 or sign up for one of her classes, view our schedule here.