I hear this all the time from breastfeeding moms. You feel like you’re feeding the baby. All. The. Time. Trapped on the couch. In bed. Clustering feeding for days to weeks at a time.
Babies double their birth weight by six months and triple it by one year. They go through multiple back to back growth spurts. They feed more frequently during growth spurts. This increases your milk production. The closer together the feedings are, the higher the fat content in your milk, helping baby get the calories they need to grow. Each time they feed more often, it actually causes your body to make milk faster!! They are completely dependent on you for all of their nutrition and caloric intake, and your milk is the primary staple in their diet until ONE YEAR!!
Babies also want the breast for more than nutrition. During teething, being at the breast relieves pain. When baby is in an emotional or cognitive leap, being at the breast regulates their nervous system and can help calm them down. When baby is scared or stressed, your baby’s heart and respiratory rate will slow to match yours, helping them relax and regulate. Being at the breast also helps baby with temperature regulation. Your breast can warm or cool by a few degrees to help warm or cool baby.
While it can feel like you’re trapped feeding all the time, this is a short stage in your child’s development. As your child matures and grows, they will depend on you for these things less and less. Grab a snack, some water, a phone charger and the remote. I promise it won’t last forever.