Your baby didn’t come with a manual
and even if she did, it would be verrrrry long. That’s why we developed…
The sleep-feed struggle is real.
I’m Hillary, the mama behind baby settler
As a mom, Registered Nurse, and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, I’ve devoted my career to helping mothers and babies. It’s my mission to help families establish a routine, navigate feeding confidently, and get sleep.
"Baby Settler has given me the confidence I need as a first time mom! I've done 2 in person consultations and I've left feeling so encouraged. Thanks Baby Settler for being so wonderful & compassionate."
It’s Not Just
Helping parents understand how feeding affects sleep and how sleep affects feeding
We’re here to support you.
How do I get my breastfeeding baby to sleep through the night?
One thing you can do TODAY to promote nighttime sleep is follow the feed, wake, sleep, feed cycle. Something I want you to really hear. This piece of the puzzle gets lost A LOT with mothers who are breastfeeding, and A LOT of the sleep difficulties experienced during infancy can be traced back to this missing piece of the puzzle.
For breastfeeding babies, the amount of breast milk your baby transfers at the breast at each feeding is going to be different each time. Your baby isn’t going to eat the same number of ounces at each feeding.
Just like you and I are more hungry or less hungry at different times throughout the day, your baby is too.
Here’s something else you probably haven’t thought about. Your available breastmilk is going to change throughout the day. For example, you’re going to have “more” available at the morning feeds than you will at 5pm. It’s just how your body works. It doesn’t mean you have a supply issue. When a breastfed baby is feeding at “Scheduled” times, it may be preventing him from getting his daily intake needs met.
I’m NOT by any means saying you can’t have a routine to your day. What I’m saying is this: if your baby is hungry at 9 and he isn’t scheduled to eat until 9:30, and you delay the feed, your body thinks your baby wasn’t hungry until 9:30. So your breast milk that was available at 9:00 for him, we told your body he didn’t need it, and he wasn’t hungry until 9:30. Then, maybe your baby is tired from being held off for a feed, and he doesn’t breastfeed very well, and your body thinks he really didn’t need “that much” breastmilk, and then your body starts to adjust to that cycle. This directly affects nighttime sleep.
It’s the # 1 reason breastfeeding mom’s start to see a supply and demand issue with their baby. And I talk about it more in the Breastfeeding and Newborns Made Simple course.
How do I get my baby to take naps?
Daytime sleep is so important for nighttime sleep. It’s also really important your baby is getting quality daytime sleep in order to promote effective, efficient feeds. This applies to breastfeeding and bottle-feeding babies.
While daytime sleep (and naps) are important, they aren’t always easy to navigate! And I’ve found there is a lot of conflicting advice given surrounding this topic. To get started, talking about naps (and how to get them!), you can download our FREE guide: 6 Tips to Getting your baby to Nap for longer than 30 minutes.
Why won’t my breastfeeding baby latch?
There’s a long list of “reasons” by a baby might not latch. It could be you have a preterm baby who hasn’t perfected the suck-swallow-breathe skill. It could be you have flat or inverted nipples and your baby isn’t feeling your nipple in the roof of their mouth to initiate “the latch”. This might be especially true for a baby who has a high palate. The good news: Your baby latching is NOT time sensitive. The important news: establishing your milk supply is! When in doubt, feed your baby (via paced bottle feeding technique) and pump (to protect your supply!) and follow up with a Lactation Consultant ASAP!
We’d love to help you navigate your breastfeeding (or pumping) journey. You can schedule a virtual or in-person consult with one of our Baby Settler providers here.
How do I know if my baby is getting enough milk?
A lot of women worry their baby isn’t getting enough. During the first 24 hours of life, your baby’s stomach is about the size of a cherry. It holds about 5 to 7 ml at each feeding. That’s a teaspoon. By day 3, your baby’s stomach is about the size of a walnut, and able to hold just under an ounce at each feeding. By the end of the first week, your baby’s stomach is about the size of an egg, and she’s able to eat between 1.5 to 2 ounces at each feeding. Once your milk has fully transitioned, after about 2 weeks, your baby is able to take anywhere between 2 to 4 ounces at each feeding during the first 4 to 6 weeks of life.
But how do you really know your baby is getting enough? Breastfeeding babies should be back to their birth weight by 2 weeks old, and gain about 4 to 7 ounces per week after the first 2 weeks. Keeping track of your baby’s wet and poopy diapers will help ensure he’s getting enough. Your baby should have periods of alertness after breastfeeding, followed by periods of content sleep. It’s normal to have days where your baby cluster feeds, but if you feel like your baby is constantly acting hungry, you should reach out to a lactation consultant. Another thing to note here is this: If you feel like your baby is needing to feed for at least 40 minutes at each feeding, every day, has slow weight gain, and seems to need to eat 10 or more times each day after the first 6 weeks, there could be something going on with the latch or with your milk supply.
Trust your instincts! If you’re looking for more support, we’d love to support you! Schedule a consult with one of our Lactation Consultants.
When should a baby start sleeping through the night?
Instead of thinking of it like this [should]…. Let’s think of it like this…
What’s a realistic expectation for my baby to start sleeping through the night…
It’s true what they say… Some babies sleep better than others. So, don’t compare your baby to someone else’s baby. But, taking that into consideration, there are some things you can do to help your baby sleep!
There’s a foundation to sleep!
- Feed on cue. Feeding on cue helps ensure your baby is taking a “full” feeding.
- You have to protect your baby’s pockets of sleep by creating a good sleep environment for daytime and nighttime sleep.
- You don’t wake a sleeping baby …. Most of the time.
- You’ve got to differentiate daytime feedings from nighttime feedings. Nighttime feedings should be as boring as possible. They’re all business!
- Remember that daytime sleep promotes nighttime sleep
It’s s really important you understand the foundation to sleep. That way, you won’t feel like you’re blindly following the recommendation of some lady they call, The Baby Settler!
Hear this. It doesn’t matter how old your baby is. Feeding affects sleep, and sleep affects feeding. If you feel like your baby is having difficulty napping or sleeping at night, we’d love to support you! We have courses + guides that will get your little one sleeping through the night!