You know your milk is a perfect food for your baby. You know breast milk digests quickly and you understand about ‘supply and demand’ – the more your baby drinks, the more milk your body will be signalled to make. But it seems as though your baby is feeding all day some days and you are worried, is he getting enough milk? Is he really hungry? Should I have a feeding schedule?
The thing is, breastfeeding is about so much more than ‘food’. It’s comfort, connection, sensory stimulation, brain food and a wonderful immune boost for your baby (as he is exposed to bugs the transfer of his saliva to your breasts will signal your amazing body to make antibodies to these bugs and he will step up feeds to boost his immunity).
We asked mothers for all the reasons their babies wanted boobies and here, we have 75 very good reasons babies may need to snuggle in and refuel on magic mama milk– besides feeling hungry!
When your baby seems to be on a feeding binge and you worry, is he getting enough? Or, if your confidence wavers when somebody asks you, ‘is he feeding again?’ remember, you don’t need to count how many times you feed your baby, any more than you count how many times you kiss him.
Watch your baby, not the clock. All of these ‘just because’ nursings will keep your milk supply strong and help your milk flow. Trust your mama intuition and the very special connection between you and your baby.
Your baby might want boobies because:
1) I am brand new and I am just learning, so I need lots of practice to get this right
2) I’m awake so where are you (and your boobs)?
3) I ‘m asleep so where are you (and your boobs)?
4)I am over stimulated – this big world is too much for me right now
5) It’s night and I can’t see you, so I need to touch and smell and taste you.
6) Just checking they still work – I will only take a moment (and you will be left leaking!)
7) I just saw them. They’re there.
8) I need to poo
9) I have a lip and tongue tie and I keep slipping off the boob before I have finished, so I need more feeds to fill up my tummy.
10) Mum got changed in front of me… I saw them… I want them.
11) They were near my face.
12) I love boobies!
13) You are talking on the phone and I worry you have forgotten me.
14) You are busy and I want you to slow down and be right here with me, right now.
15) It’s yummy!
16) My tummy hurts.
17) I’m awake but I haven’t finished my nap and boobie will help me settle back to sleep again.
18) My gums hurt.
19) I see you.
20) I just need to know you will come when I need you!
21) I have a fart I need to push out.
22) If I drink lots, boobies will make more milk.
23) Meeting this person I haven’t seen in ages is freaking me out!
24) I am cold and I need some warm milky cuddles.
25) I need to fill my nappy.
26) I feel uneasy when I see you moving too far from me -I am just beginning to perceive distance.
27) I feel unsure about this new place, it’s so noisy.
28) I am growing very quickly.
29) I am learning to crawl and I need to ‘touch base’ when I get too far from you.
30) My ears are hurting in this plane and sucking helps.
31) I’m hot.
32) I’m teething and it hurts.
33) Just checking in with you.
34) Baby sister is having it so I need it too.
35) I’m feeling sick.
36) I'm hungry, again!
37) I’m in a strange place and boobie feels like ‘home’.
38) I want a cuddle.
39) I’m in a ‘wonder week’ and I am confused because my world feels different.
40) Just ‘coz’.
41) I need help falling asleep.
42) To be close to you.
43) You just clipped your bra back up after feeding me, and I’m not done!
44) I’ve learned the word ‘boobie’ and I know when I say it, boobie comes right out!
45) Everyone else is having dinner.
46) I saw you.
47) My car needs somewhere to drive over.
48) I got a fright.
49) Too many people are asking to hold me and I don’t want them to take me away from you.
50) I bumped my head.
51) I’m hot.
52) I’m irritable.
53) I’m a baby!
54) Mummy just fell asleep.
55) I don’t know these people who are trying to talk to me all at once.
56) Mommy is comfy and that’s what we do when our show is on.
57) I thought you were mad at me.
58) Mommy looks sad-this will cheer her up.
59) I feel sad and Boobies will cheer me up.
60) Someone brought up nursing.
61) I saw another baby doing it so now I want to.
62) Daddy got too close. I need to remind him they are mine.
63) I had a bad dream.
64) Your boob popped out (it was basically calling me).
65) You were wearing me and your boobs were right there.
66) You just got home and I’ve missed you.
67) A kid at daycare was sick and I need help to fight the bugs he shared.
68) You took your bra off.
69) Morning snuggles are the best!
70) I feel like there’s more milk in there. Let me check.
71) Boobie makes me feel brave when I get scared.
72) It tastes so good.
73) I’m thirsty.
74) I need you.
75) I love you!
For the most effective tips to boost your milk supply , download our FREE ebook ‘Making More Mummy Milk, Naturally’ by Pinky McKay, IBCLC lactation consultant, best selling author of ‘Sleeping Like a Baby’ and Parenting by Heart (Penguin Random House) and creator of Boobie Foods, including delicious, all natural and organic Boobie Bikkies and Boobie Brekkie, delicious toasted Muesli to nourish you as you breastfeed your baby