How Do I Know If My Baby is Still Hungry?
Parents always wonder if their baby is getting enough of anything: sleep, hugs, food, etc. How do you know if your formula-fed baby is getting enough to eat?
You know the guidelines for feeding a baby based on weight. You have the charts on the packaging or recommendations from your pediatrician. But after a few weeks of feedings, you know that everything can change. Your baby is growing, so is their hunger. However, there are some feedings where they don’t finish the bottle. The only thing routine about feeding time is that your baby needs to eat.
- Lip smacking
- Rooting (this is true for breastfed and formula-fed babies)
- Fist in mouth
Newborns and Hunger
During the first few months, your baby is eating on demand. This can occur every two to three hours. The only thing they eat is what is easy to digest: breast milk or formula. Breast-fed babies are the ones who dictate how much milk you produce, so it is important to let them eat until they are finished. They will pull away, close their lips, or stop suckling. This little bundle knows how much they want.
Bottle-fed babies also know how much they want. The difference is that parents can see how much is in the bottle compared to the breast. If your baby stops eating, you can offer them the bottle again, but don’t force the last ounce or two. If they overeat, it can lead to stomachaches and spit ups. Don't worry if your baby falls asleep. It takes a lot of energy at first when it comes to eating.
Infants and Hunger
Your pediatrician will recommend solid foods by six months, but some babies are hungrier around four months. A few teaspoons of baby cereal create a thickness in formula or on its own that makes your baby feel full. Some babies and their parents enjoy cereal before bedtime because it keeps them full and helps them sleep through the night. By this point, you have been able to adjust formula measurements for weight and hunger. You have experienced everything from sickness to growth spurts, so you are more in tune to your baby’s hunger.
Extra Tips For Feeding Your Baby
- Don’t adjust the measurements of formula to water in your baby’s bottle. The ratio of powder to water is important for nutrition, proper hydration, and thickness. Too much water means they are not getting the right amount of vitamins and minerals. Too much powder can impact their digestive system and do damage to their kidneys over the long run.
- If you add cereal to your baby’s formula as an extra thickener to help them feel fuller, be sure to mix the formula before you add the cereal. That balance of nutrition is more crucial that the thickness.
- Hungry babies will still spit up or have gas, but it may be more difficult for them to eat. This can be due to an allergy to an ingredient like milk protein. They may also have problems keeping their food down because of issues such as GER (gastroesophageal reflux). Talk to your doctor about your concerns if this is ongoing.
- If your baby is colicky, it can be from the food they eat. Colic occurs when your baby is crying for at least three hours straight for at least three days a week for at least three weeks. You may need to make other changes so that your baby can keep eating for their growth and development.
Hipp Organic Baby Formula For Hungry Babies
If you have a hungry baby on your hands, there are a few things that you can do to make them feel satisfied. Hipp Follow On Milk, also known as Stage 2, is made for babies age six months and up. It still supports your baby’s digestive health with probiotics and it is easy to digest. If reflux is keeping your baby from keeping their food down, Hipp Anti Reflux has locust bean gum to thicken the formula and keep it from coming back up.
If your baby is healthy and gaining weight, then it means that everything you are doing is on the right track. Your baby will eat more on some days than others, and that is normal. You will continue to adapt to their needs whether it is fussy, hungry, or not interested. Before long, you will be an expert.