Does your little one seem like they are no longer satisfied with their usual feeding routine? Have they become a little garbage disposal? Being aware of baby growth spurt signs will help you spot out your little ones growth spurts!
I am sure you have heard from your mama friends or your pediatrician about baby growth spurts. Even though there are “typical” ages when babies usually hit a growth spurt they can really occur at any time. Every baby grows and develops on their own timeline!
We are going to touch on some key tips you can use to help recognize your little’s growth spurts and what to do when they hit one.
What Are Baby Growth Spurts?
A baby growth spurt is simply a period of time when your baby grows faster than normal. Growth spurts can last just a few days or up to a week.
I have found that some babies become bottomless pits when they go through growth spurts and some just want to sleep, sleep, sleep. Your baby may be one or the other. Or like my little guy who is a combination of both.
Growth spurts often concern breastfeeding mamas because we stress about being able to produce enough breastmilk to feed the little one. I cannot stress enough that you DO NOT need to stress about your breastmilk production during a growth spurt.
I will touch more on what to do during a growth spurt while breastfeeding below! Keep reading!
5 Baby Growth Spurt Signs
Your baby may show all of these signs, a combination of these signs, or none of the signs. Each baby is unique, but these are the most common signs your babe is hitting a growth spurt.
#1: Cluster Feeding
Cluster feeding refers to a sudden increase in the frequency or number of times your baby is breastfeeding daily. They may want to nurse for 20 minutes every hour or so. This is really common during the first growth spurt around 3 weeks.
#2: They Never Seem Satisfied After Feeding
After you offer the normal bottle you always feed them, your baby may still be showing you they are hungry. If you are nursing, then you may notice your baby is nursing for a longer period of time or they may not show they are fully satisfied after the nursing session.
#3: Increase In Hunger Cues
Being able to read your little one’s hunger cues is important for this very reason! Their feeding schedule is not always going to be typical. When they hit a growth spurt you may notice they are signaling you with these cues much more frequently than they normally do.
#4: Waking in The Middle of The Night For Feedings When They Normally Don’t
You may notice that your baby is all of a sudden waking up in the middle of the night wanting food when they normally slept through the night. If your little one already wakes in the middle of the night you may notice they are waking more frequently.
Waking in the middle of the night or more frequently can also be a sign of sleep regression. Some babies will sleep more when they are going through a growth spurt. So, just because they are still sleeping sound doesn’t mean they aren’t in a growth spurt.
#5: Sleeping More Than Usual
Like I said before, some babies sleep more than usual during a growth spurt. Sleeping growing babies are great for us sleep-deprived mamas. Soak it in while it lasts!
You may notice your little one is tired earlier during their wake windows than normal. They may take longer naps or sleep more at night. Don’t be concerned about waking your baby to feed, unless your doctor is concerned with their weight gain. They need the extra sleep to help their body fuel their growth spurt and recover.
When Do Babies Go Through Growth Spurts?
Here is the typical growth spurt schedule. Remember that babies can hit growth spurts at any time. Keep an eye out for baby growth spurt signs around these times.
Your child will continue to hit growth spurts well into adulthood. The signs your child is going through a growth spurt will continue to be noticeable throughout their childhood and teenage years.
What to Do When Your Baby Hits a Growth Spurt?
There is not much you can do when you pick up on your baby’s growth spurt signs. In all honesty, there is not much your baby needs from you during this time either. Just be attentive to their hunger and sleep needs.
Here are just some tips for helping your babe through their quick growth spurt:
- Ditch the feeding schedule. If you are keeping your little guy or gal on a feeding schedule, then I would highly recommend putting the schedule on hold during their growth spurt. They need the extra food to fuel their growth, so you want to make sure you are feeding them when they are hungry.
- Listen to your baby’s hunger cues. Your little one will tell you when they are hungry. It is important to pay attention to these signs since they likely will be eating more than normal. If you are unsure of what signs to look for to tell if your babe is hungry read my post about infant hunger cues.
- Make sure your baby is getting plenty of sleep. When your little one is going through a growth spurt sleep is important for allowing your baby to recover from the hard work it takes to grow. Try to stick to a sleep schedule and make sure your baby is getting the recommended hours of sleep each day for their age.
- Do not start supplementing with formula if you are breastfeeding. Your breasts work on a supply and demand system. The more baby drinks from your breasts then the more they will produce. Your milk production will increase about 2-3 days into your baby’s growth spurt. They will be okay to feed more frequently in the meantime.
Let’s Wrap It Up
Understand that your little one may be a bit cranky during these growth spurts while you and him/her try to figure out a new routine. Don’t get frustrated when their sleep or feeding pattern changes. These things are common as they grow and got through these growth spurts.