By Elizabeth Pantley, author of The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Newborns ~~~
Feeding is hard work for your new baby! It requires complete and focused attention, and it takes time to complete a full “meal.” Because of this, it’s very likely that your baby will fall asleep after expending the energy that feeding requires. It’s nearly impossible to prevent your baby from becoming drowsy as she nurses, particularly if you are breastfeeding since a biological benefit of breastmilk is that it contains a number of sleep-inducing substances.
Some sleep methods suggest separating feeding times from sleep times with playtime in between. I don’t suggest you try this because you’ll be fighting against your baby’s natural tendencies and can agitate your baby by forcing him to wake up when he’s been blissfully falling asleep, plus it can alter your own natural instincts as you are learning to read your baby’s cues.
As many as 80% of newborn nurslings fall asleep at most of their breastfeeding sessions! And when you consider that many hours of your time in the first month or two are spent breastfeeding, it’s important that you understand both how normal this, and how to keep alert to developing patterns and the ways that they will affect the coming months.
Elizabeth Pantley is a mother of four, grandmother, and author of the bestselling book, The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Newborns plus 8 other books in the No-Cry Solution Series, which helps Moms and Dads through all key stages of parenting. Visit her at nocrysolution.com
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