You should breastfeed on demand whenever your little one is hungry in the first few months as a newborn. And your baby is going to let you know, loud and clear! But crying isn’t the only clue.
Following your child's lead, instead of trying to stick to a strict time-based schedule, is often called “demand feeding” or “feeding on-demand.” Since your infant can't actually say "I'm hungry,” you’ll want to learn to look for cues that it's time to eat. These may include:
- Leaning toward your breast
- Sucking on their hands or fingers
- Opening their mouth, sticking out their tongue, or puckering their lips
Crying is also a sign of hunger. But if you wait until your baby is very upset to feed them, it can be hard to calm them down.