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Feeding a baby of 3 months of age is different to a newborn. Even within a few short months there is a world of change in their development and responses. They’ve had lots of opportunity to practice their feeding skills, so by three months a baby’s sucking and swallowing is more refined. It’s also less influenced by reflexes and more by learned behaviour.
Babies are hardwired to seek interaction and love, and feeding times especially are an opportunity for engagement. Hunger is the single biggest motivator for a baby of 3 months to feed. By this age and stage they give very clear signals that they are hungry, and similarly when they’ve had enough.
Age, gender, environment, growth and development are all important factors in feeding. Try not to interpret your baby’s cries as always meaning they’re hungry. There are lots of reasons why babies cry.
By three months babies have developed head and neck control. Floor time, on their tummy everyday when they’re awake, will help to build their upper body skills. These skills start to become obvious in all sorts of ways, even when feeding. They’ll want to look around and will use your shoulder to rest their head on if they’re tired.
Your baby may still be showing signs of reflux and/or crying. Some babies aren’t distressed by their reflux and continue to grow and thrive. Others show distress when they’re refluxing because the acid stomach contents cause heartburn type symptoms.
Most babies start to outgrow their reflux symptoms from three months of age. By then, gravity and gut maturity make a real difference to feeding and digestion.
There have been many theories about why babies cry, particularly in their first three months of life.
Whatever the true cause for crying, we do know that most babies start to calm by three months of age. Their feeding and sleep become more predictable, they are better at communicating their needs, and they are into more of a routine.
Always speak and check with a qualified nurse or healthcare professional for more information about your three month old baby’s feeding. Have your baby’s weight and growth measured to make sure they’re getting enough milk to thrive.
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For mums who are able to, breastfeeding is best for babies. It delivers many benefits for both mum and baby. Breastmilk contains all the nutrients your growing bub needs to thrive, especially in the first 6 months of life, plus antibodies to help them fight infections.
It’s important for pregnant and breastfeeding mums to maintain good nutrition. Deciding to use a combination of breast and bottle-feeding for an extended period may reduce your own breast milk supply, and reversing your decision may be difficult.
When using infant formula, follow the feeding guide and preparation directions carefully. Improper use or incorrect preparation of infant formula can make your baby ill.
Consult your doctor or health care professional for advice prior to using the formula to feed your baby. You should also consider the social and financial implications before deciding to use infant formula.
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