Newborn babies require plenty of sleep and there is no need to wonder if your baby sleeps almost all the time. Some babies do not wake up even during feeding. Newborn babies must be fed every two to three hours, even if he or she is sleeping. Frequent feeding is also beneficial to stimulate the production of milk in your breasts. However, all mothers will agree that breastfeeding the sleepy newborn is not an easy or simple job. It will definitely test your patience and nerves. Healthy babies typically cry when they are uncomfortable or hungry. You cannot expect such a thing from a newborn.
If your baby sleeps for hours and hours without waking to feed, do not think it is a blessing, as it can result in serious problems. Mothers of newborns are advised to wake and feed the baby every two to three hours. Luckily, there are some effective and proven techniques to rouse a sleeping newborn and keep him or her interested in feeding. Try to wake the baby up when it is in active or light sleep. Observe your baby and watch for the signs of active sleep, such as making facial expression, rapid eye movements, eyelid fluttering, movement of arms and legs, and sucking motions of the mouth. The following techniques can be helpful in breastfeeding the sleepy newborn.
Ticking is one of the helpful methods to wake a newborn. Gently tickle his feet or rub the arms, hands, and back. While feeding the baby, attempt to converse with your baby in a soft voice and look directly into the baby’s eyes when you are talking. Take the baby in your arms and hold him or her in an upright position like you are burping the baby. Otherwise, put the baby on your lap, carefully lifts him or her into a sitting position, and massage the back in circular motions. Do not forget to give proper support to the baby’s head, neck, and back with your hands. This technique will most probably make your baby wake up and open his or her eyes.
Another way to wake your baby up is to gently massage the baby’s shoulder blades or rub your finger tip against the baby’s lips. Wiping the baby’s face with a cool cloth can also be helpful. Remove the baby’s clothes except the diaper and try to have some skin-to-skin contact with the baby. Most babies tend to shut their eyes in the bright light and so make sure that the lights in the room are not very bright. Switch off the bright lights before starting to feed the baby. Express some breast milk from your breast and place it on the baby’s lips. Try to hold the baby in football hold when feeding. Squeeze or massage your breasts when the baby stops sucking. If necessary, seek the help of a lactation consultant.
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