On Demand feedng???

Hi guys

Whats the general opinon on feeding these days. Is feeding on demand the way to go or stick to a set time period. My mother got me in a stress last night going on about sticking to the four hour rule and not feeding on demand. What on earth she is basing this four hours on I dont know as your average adult eats more often than that. Anyone any ideas??



  • Hmmm, well i only had my baby on Thursday but the midwives in hospital (i was in there for 4 days) say you should feed about every 3 hours and not let it go more than that. I have the opposite problem with my baby as he isn't very hungry and has to be woken up for his feeds. I would say however that i really don't know how you would ignore a baby that is screaming for food so although i understand the need for routine, if a baby is hungry, I would feed it. My baby does cry for food when all he wants is a to latch on and not take any milk though which can be annoying but i still couldn't ignore him if he was hungry.

  • The four hour rule was the way to go when my mother had me. She was in the hospital for 10 days after I was born and back then, the babies stayed in the hospital nursery, not with their mums. She said every four hours, a nurse would come around with all the babies on a cart, the mums would feed and the cart would come back to pick the babies up!
    I fed my first on demand and I'll do the same for this one. My first eventually fell into feeding routine.
  • i started feeding on demand with my daughter and it got to the stage that all i did all day long was feed! She constantly wanted to be held and used to sleep at the breast instead of feeding! in the end i was in such a state that my health visitor advised to try increasing time between feeds gradually to 4 hrs and it was hard at first but it did work and i will definitely try to do that again this time round.
    Claudia 36+2 xx
  • Depends on your point of view - this is the older and more stricter method of feeding - so the baby supposedly doesn't cry 'for attention' etc. It works for some people (usually those that like a very strict routine) but for me I'll be feeding on demand as I'm aiming to breastfeed exclusively and this is the way to get enough milk for lo.

    Allie - my mum tells me stories like this as well, in fact I was such a screamer I was put in the sin bin and not in the nursery as I disturbed all the other babies! Explains a lot really....!

    16 days to go
  • I fed my daughter on demand and it was fine, she eventually fell into her own routine of feeding every 3 and a half hours when she was about 2 months old. I did try and put her down awake at that point though because she did just cry for food but only so she could fall asleep on the bottle and not really take anything.
  • Well i dont think many people advice the 4 hour rule of old but many people want to follow a routine. Midwives now seem to push the demand feeding thing but i personally plan on introducing a routine as early as possible. I have bought a Gina Ford book as a guideline and will see what works best when the baby comes.
  • It depends on the baby! Some are happy to feed every 4 hours.

    My baby is bottle-fed and feeds every 3 hours when he is awake. When he is asleep he can go up to 5-6 hours without a bottle. The way I see it if he was hungry he'd be awake and screaming.

    I think it is better to feed on demand, they fall into a routine by themselves.
  • Thats true tiger lily, if he was hungry he's soon let you know!
  • Hi all
    After reading a couple of diff books & advice from friends/family etc, i will be (trying) to set a routine (am bottle feeding) - i think it will be easier for myself/hubby and also "Bubble" when he/she arrives.
    I think everyone's got to do whats right for them and you can't set anything in stone....my plans will prob go out the window...as long as i can be flexible!!
    Sarah xx
  • when my daughter was born she would sleep for 4 hours then wake for her feed then go straight back to sleep again it was like this for the first 6 weeks then she started to sleep through so her last feed was around 10 at night and she would wake again about 7 for her next feed!!!! there was the odd night that she woke for an extra feed but apart from that she was a really good baby. a friend of mie tried to get her baby into a routine but it didnt work i defiantly think demand feeding is best.


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