Breast Feeding: Duration for 5 weeks old

  • My son is 5 weeks old and I use nipple shield while breast feed him as my nipples are flat.   He drinks only for 5 to 7 mins and sleeps.  I try atleast 1 and half an hour to feed him but in vain.  But after drinking for 5 mins, he burps.  He also screams everytime I feed him. 

    My question is

    Any idea whether 5 mins of feeding is enough for a 5 weeks old?

    Why  he screams while I feed him?

  • Offhand, I would say no. 5 minutes is not long enough. It takes longer than that for letdown and then hindmilk to come out. He needs your hindmilk to grow. He can't be eating well if he is screaming while eating.

    Things to look at are:

    Is he wetting lots of diapers?

    Is he having plenty of yellow seedy bowel movements?

    Is he alert when he is awake?

    Is he gaining weight?

    I would have a lactation consultant watch him nurse and see if she can figure out why he is crying. It is also worth mentioning to the pediatrician. ESPECIALLY, if any of the things I listed above is not what it should be.

    That being said, there are different types of feeders. Some babies like to relax and enjoy a long meal. Others get in and get out. My daughter never nursed longer than 10 minutes. BUT I always felt full before she nursed, experienced let down, and then felt less full when she was done. She was happy, gained weight, and never had any problems. She was just a very efficient nurser.

  • Thanks for your suggestion.


    1) My son is gaining weight

    2) He is wetting

    3) He is haveing bowel movements

    4) He is alert

    When i try to pump, i get around 70 ml of milk in 3 to 4 mins.  So will my son be getting that much milk when he sucks for 5 mins? 


    He will drink for a minute or 2 then he will scream, then i put him on my shoulder and pat.  Then once he calms down, again he will drink for 1 to 2 mins.  Once he is done, he wont drink.  SO if i total up , his total drinking time is 5 mins sometimes, very rarely 7 to 10 mins.


    So is that fine?



  • Hi,

    I would have him evaluated to rule out reflux. Babies who cry during feeding often do so because reflux is making it painful. It sounds like he is getting plenty of fluid. However, he needs to nurse longer to get the more substantial fatty milk. Also, the first milk that comes out is high in lactic acid which can increase tummy pain if that is the only milk he is getting. Even if he is a little speed nurser, he needs to be nursing comfortably and for some reason he isn't doing that. We need to find out why.


  • Just another thought, if you get 70ml from one breast in 3-4 minutes, it may be your letdown that is making him cry. You might express your milk for a few minutes before putting him to the breast. That way, it is coming out less forcefully when he latches on. That might help him nurse more comfortably.

  • I will try to pump a little b4 feeding him.  So that the force would be less and also will check whether that makes him confortable.  Its been 45 days since he is born and i would have done around 350 feedings.  Out of which 325 feedings, he would be screaming.  I am loosing my patience towards breast feeding.  TOday I am trying to contact some Lactation consultant to solve the issue.  I also spoke to one of the Lalechelegue leaders, they also couldnt help me.  Thanks for your suggestion.  If you have any other suggestion, please let me know.

  • Has he been checked out for reflux? Forceful letdown and reflux are my first thoughts with everything you have said. If it is reflux, you will still have a problem if you switch to bottle. Maybe pumping a little first will help, but if it doesn't he should be seen by his doctor. Feedings should be a relaxing time for you and your baby. I'm sorry this has been so hard for you both.

    I talked to a mom once and her baby had terrible reflux. Her baby needed reflux meds and also preferred to nurse in an upright position. It took a little bit of work to figure that out (several lactation consultants and a pediatrician didn't figure it out), but after switching to an upright position her baby was much happier.

  • I got an appointment with a LC for thursday.  I am hoping for the best.  I would like to know what is REFLUX? 

  • Reflux is when the breastmilk travels back up your baby's esophagus. You will see most babies with reflux spit up. It is a super common condition in infants and generally not a problem at all. However, in some babies it can become a problem. Also, your baby does not have to spit up to have reflux.