A customer recently asked us about night time feeds, and how long she could expect to still be getting up at night to feed her baby. Her son was 8 months old, and she was getting up at 2am to feed him every night. She said “I appreciate that this night-time feed won’t last forever – but wonder will he eventually drop it himself or is it something which we will need to wean him off?”
In our experience we have found that many babies will stop having night feeds when they grow out of the newborn stage. Some babies as young as 3 months can often sleep all night, others may start when they settle into having solids, and others just grow out of night time waking/feeding when they are ready.
Some mums might give their baby a “dream feed” before she goes to bed, gently lifting baby out of cot and feeding them while they sleep – to keep their tummy full until morning.
Occasionally the parents might make a decision as to whether their baby is actually needing the feed when they wake at night, or just seeking comfort. (Younger babies need the feed, older babies who are having solids foods and plenty of milk in the day will most likely be getting all their nutrition met in the day). So the parents may need to make a decision about this – they could offer a sip of water and cuddle when the baby wakes (and gradually stop having the water sip). Just give baby a cuddle and kiss and tuck them back into bed. We recommend that you keep lighting, talking, and interaction to a minimal level when you tend to them at night.