Cluster feeding q & a

Cluster Feeding Q & A

What do feedings look like during your baby's first two weeks at home?

  • We recommend feeding on demand to establish breastfeeding and your supply.
  • Feedings typically take 30-45 minutes while you and your baby are learning how to latch and feed effectively.

Once the baby is two weeks old and older, how often and how long should feedings be?

  • We recommend beginning a consistent feeding and sleeping routine once babies are two weeks old, healthy, and pass birth weight because babies thrive on predictability.
  • You can begin the Moms on Call Schedule based on your baby’s age.
    • Our schedules focus on feeding effectively during the day, so your baby can focus on sleeping efficiently at night.
  • At this age, feedings are about 30 minutes in length and continue to decrease as the baby gets older and more efficient at feedings.
  • In the Moms on Call Basic Baby Care 0-6 Months Book, you can find a cheat sheet for how long feedings typically take and the average intake from a bottle based on your baby’s age.

What is a ”Cluster Feeding”?

  • It often describes “snacks” offered throughout the day and night.
  • It is often used when babies are fussy or going through a growth spurt. The issue is it can cause a cycle of not getting a full feed, then not resting well, being hungry sooner, being too tired to eat great, eating a little, etc.
  • These small feeds can cause more gas as the digestive system ramps up, hindering them from getting those full feedings in.

Why do “Cluster Feeds” cause more gas?

  • Every time the baby eats, their stomach contents produce acid and digestive juices.
  • The more often they eat, the more often the digestive issues, including acidity, are produced, which can increase gassiness and fussiness.
  • Plus, if they are only snacking, then they will be hungry sooner, which can lead to shorter periods of sleep and an overtired baby.
  • The Moms on Call Schedule makes early digestion as easy and natural as possible by feeding on a more predictable feeding routine. It works with the way the body is designed.
    • Bulk feeding
    • Digest
    • Rest
    • Reset
    • Repeat
  • The schedule allows the baby to get better rest times as well, so they will have enough energy to eat well because feeding is like an aerobic exercise for babies.
  • In the NICU, all babies eat every 3 hours, and we keep feedings to under 30 minutes, so the babies can have enough energy to get those full feedings in and have time to rest and grow.

Are you afraid a schedule will hurt your supply?

  • We actually see a consistent feeding routine help mom’s supply.
  • When we “cluster feed,” it can cause that vicious cycle, as we talked about earlier of them getting too tired to eat well, then they only eat a little and will not suck aggressively at the breasts, which can cause a decrease in your supply. This is the exact opposite of what we want to happen.

At Moms on Call, we support all families, whether breastfed, bottle-fed, or a combination of both.

We are 100% Pro Fed Baby and support families in whatever feeding option works best for mom and baby. It can look different from baby to baby and family to family. However you feed your baby, your little one has the most incredible mom in the world because of your love for them, not how you feed them.

Want more personalized support?

With each and every Moms on Call Consulting experience, we have one goal in mind—to equip you with the confidence you need to become the best parent possible for your child. We are proud to partner with Certified Consultants who are uniquely trained to work with families utilizing the Moms on Call philosophy. All consultants are licensed nurses with pediatric experience who have used Moms on Call within their own homes. Book your personal consultation with one of our Premier Certified Moms on Call Consultants!

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