During the Neonatal Period or first 3 months of your newborn’s life, their feeds and sleep are their most vital activities. Why? Newborns are very fragile and as their immune system is still quite weak, they can be easily exposed to many illnesses and other undesired sickness, infections, viruses, etc. Their immune system is strengthened as they grow and develop. That is why parents applaud after every pound their baby gains.
Many parents who have had children before usually how much their child should eat and sleep throughout the 24 hour period. However, as a new parent, you’re unaware of what is actually right or wrong until you go to your next doctor’s visit, someone advises you, or something goes wrong. Of course you typically trust your baby’s Pediatrician above all. You just can’t have access to him every second of the day. So certain decisions have to be made and sometimes chosen by your best instincts.
What is the Average Amount of Sleep Your Baby Should Get?
According to research and advice from our doctor, your baby needs approximately 16 hours of sleep the first quarter of his life. Then every quarter after that is decreased by one hour until he is at least a year old. Therefore, from 1 to 3 months, he should be sleeping approximately 16 hours a day. From 3 to 6 months, his sleep may decrease to approximately 15 hours a day. From 6 to 9 months it may decrease again to approximately 14 hours a day and 9 to 12 months it may decrease another hour, making it approximately 13 hours a day. After he’s a year old, he typically stays at anywhere from 12 to 14 hours a day of sleep.
There are many health benefits to a good night’s sleep. Unfortunately, during the first 3 months, we as parents don’t gain much of it. However, making sure that our baby does not only improves their health, but also our well-being. After all, cranky babies usually mean unhappy mommies.
The Measurement of a Baby’s Formula Intake
Of course milk intake might be a bit different if your baby is or was breastfed. However, for someone who couldn’t breastfeed their child, we had to do measurements. So what did our Pediatrician say about our baby’s food intake? The following:
During the first week of your baby’s life, your baby should be taking approximately 2 ounces per feed. Each feed is typically anywhere from 2 to 3 hours at a time.
From week one until your baby is about a month old, he should taking anywhere from 2 to 3 ounces per feed at least every 3 hours at a time.
After he’s a month old until he’s about 3 months old, he should be taking anywhere from 4 to 5 ounces per feed at least every 4 hours.
From 3 to 6 months of age, he should be taking anywhere from 5 to 7 ounces at least every 4 to 5 hours.
From 6 to 9 months, your baby should take anywhere from 6 to 8 ounces at least every 6 hours. At this point, it is ok to slowly introduce your baby to other types of food. Some parents may start with some rice cereal and then move on from there.
From 9 to 12 months he should be able to hold his milk feeds at least 7 to 8 hours at a time as he may already be eating other food fit for babies.
After a year, parents who have been bottle and/or formula feeding typically try to get their babies to switch to regular milk.
Of course these are all just approximations and estimates and depending on whether or not you breast or bottle feed.
We go through many trials and errors as parents. We can follow any manual or instructions, but in reality, our instincts will usually tell us if, if anything else, what’s actually best for our children.