Keep in mind that up until about 150 years ago there was no substitute for mother’s milk that reliably kept babies alive. Breastfeeding is not as fragile and easily derailed as some believe — if it were, we would not be concerned about overpopulation today since so many babies would not have survived. From a practical standpoint, the best way to know your baby is getting enough milk is weight gain. Most breastfed babies gain about an ounce a day (or eight ounces per week) during the first few months of life. On a day-to-day basis, between day three or four and week six, at least five to six wet disposable diapers and at least four stools the size of a quarter or larger are good signs of ample milk intake. Many mothers worry about milk production because they’re unclear about how it works and what to expect. You should go into your baby’s early weeks expecting nearly constant breastfeeding. Very frequent feedings is what boosts milk production. By the time your baby is about four to five weeks old, your milk production will be at its peak. Then breastfeeding will start to become much less time and work than the alternative. Remember: Frequent early breastfeeding is an investment that pays off over the long run.
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