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Infant Growth Spurts
Is your newborn suddenly clamoring for more milk or keeping you awake all night because he/she is hungry? Just when a mother thinks that she has her newborn’s routine figured out, it suddenly changes and the baby seems to want to eat every hour. This could be a sign of an infant growth spurt or frequency days.
Growth spurts in babies is a regular feature in the first year and are an inevitable part of infant growth and maturation. This is because a child grows much more rapidly in the first twelve months than during any other phase in his or her life.
While the age at which these growth spurts are observed may differ in babies, most of the times the first growth spurt can be observed when the baby is around seven to ten days old. After this, at three weeks your baby might have his next growth spurt followed by newborn growth spurts at six weeks, three months, six months and nine months.
These growth spurts in babies usually last for around two to three days or may extend for around a week. So how do you know if your baby is going through a growth spurt? Well, during this phase the baby displays certain signs that signal an infant growth spurt.
One of the most common signs of growth spurts in newborns is cluster feedings. Your baby seems to be hungry all the time and clamors for food, resulting in your feeding the baby much more frequently. While earlier you may have been feeding the baby after every three hours, now you may be nursing every hour or so.
This is completely natural as the more milk the baby gets the faster he will grow. Moreover if you are breastfeeding then short frequent feedings should be encouraged as the more the baby feeds the more milk you would be able to produce.
During this phase many mothers complain that their young one seems to fuss a lot while feeding. The baby may pause and unlatch while feeding or seem cranky.
This fussiness while breastfeeding is because the flow of milk is not as fast as the baby may want it to be. It is advisable to drink plenty of water and stay hydrated during this phase to replenish the lost fluids while breastfeeding.
In addition to this the baby may be sleeping less or waking up earlier than usual as they may want to eat more often. So if you find your baby who earlier slept soundly for two to three hours waking up after half an hour of disturbed sleep then it is most likely that he or she may be going through a growth spurt.
Growth spurts can be troubling for a mother. It is a good idea to secure the help of friends and family during this phase. Soon enough the phase will be over and you can enjoy the time with your newborn.