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How Do I Know If My Baby Is Hungry?

·         Watch for your baby’s feeding cues:

-          Sucking on hands, fingers, lips while asleep, or just waking up

-          Moving hands and arms toward mouth

-          Restless movement while asleep

-          Sucking noises

-          “Rooting” or searching for your nipple

-          Rapid eye movement under his eyelids

-          Cooing

-          Sighing

-          Stretching

Crying is a late sign of hunger.  Try not to let your baby get to this point as it becomes more difficult for your baby to latch and feed.  Humans don’t learn well when they are angry and this can interfere with the nursing session.

When you first put baby to the breast you will notice rapid sucking in order to release the milk.  When the milk lets down the baby will do longer sucks and you may see or hear your baby swallow.  You will know your baby is satisfied when he comes off the breast or falls asleep and hands are relaxed and open. 

When your baby comes off the breast you can burp, change, or stimulate your baby and offer the other breast. 


Chemung County Health Center
103 Washington Street
Elmira, NY

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