Maternal and Infant Health Program Maternal and Infant Health Program

  SLC area: (801) 273-2871

  SLC area: (801) 274-0674

  Maternal and Infant Health Program
  P.O. Box 142002
  Salt Lake City UT



The American Academy of Pediatrician’s has made recommendations about feeding infants. Below you will find the highlights. If you want to read them for yourself, you can go to their webpage by clicking on this link: American Academy of Pediatrics

What is the best feeding method for all infants?

Mother’s milk! It provides the right balance of nutrients, antibodies to fight infections and also promotes attachment between Mother and her baby.

When should breastfeeding begin?

As soon as possible after birth, usually within the first hour. The newborn should stay with Mother during her recovery time to promote nursing (babies are usually wide awake during this time).

How do I know when to nurse my new baby?

Babies will show hunger by being more alert and active and by "rooting" with their mouths. Crying is a late sign of hunger. Rooming in with your baby in the hospital allows you to notice early signs of hunger and tune in to your baby. Hospitals often have nurses who are specially trained (lactation consultants) to help you learn to breastfeed your baby.

How often should I nurse my new baby?

Newborns should be nursed about 8 to 12 times every 24 hours. Usually 10 to 15 minutes on each breast. Start each feeding with the breast that you finished the last feeding on. Some Mothers find that a small safety pin on the bra strap helps them to remember where to start the next feeding. If your new baby is not very demanding, donít let more than 4 hours go during the waking hours between feedings. This will help you build a good milk supply for your baby.

Does my baby need additional fluids while breastfeeding?

No! Not unless your healthcare provider recommends them. Breastfeeding is a supply and demand system. Offering supplements can interfere with a good milk supply. Even pacifiers can confuse a baby who is used to feeding at the breast and therefore are not recommended.

How do I know that my baby is getting enough?

Babies who are having at least 6 wet diapers and 3 to 4 dirty diapers a day are getting enough breast milk. See your healthcare provider as suggested so that he or she can weigh your baby and make sure that breastfeeding is going well.

When should I stop breastfeeding my baby?

It’s recommended that breastfeeding continue for at least 12 months. It is ideal nutrition to help your baby grow and develop for the first 6 months of life. Gradually start iron-enriched solid foods during the second 6 months of life. If you decide to wean your baby before 1 year do not give cow’s milk, instead give iron-fortified formula.

What if my baby is premature or sick?

Premies and/or sick babies really benefit from getting breastmilk! Nurses can help you learn to pump your breastmilk and sometimes will add powder to fortify it if baby needs added calories.

Where do I get more information about pumping, increasing and maintaining my milk supply?

Just click here

What other websites can I visit to get more information about breast feeding?

Click here for a list of websites about breastfeeding!

Recommended Reading

"The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding"
La Leche League

"The Nursing Mother's Companion"
Kathleen Huggins R.N., M.S.