What is infant growth spurt?
But what is happening today? Your baby, who seemed to be picking up his stride and adopting a fairly regular daily life over the weeks, suddenly becomes gluttonous, insatiable, even irritated… and a bit difficult to follow, it must be said! Nothing to worry about too much, he is probably in full growth spurt, or “peak day” : a stage in its development who requires more food, milk, feedings. As the pediatrician explains:
“You should know that the first year of a baby’s life is the one where his growth is the fastest, the most impressive of his entire existence, where he will go from 50 cm (on average) to 75 cm in 12 months. “
And the specialist to specify: “In this growth which is never linear, we do not develop at the same speed all the time. But there are times when baby has sudden high calcium needs and nutritional intake.” Knowledge is important and helps to better understand its development and better manage changes.
When do these famous growth spurts appear in children?
Popular language often speaks of the 3-6-9 rule, i.e. 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 9 weeks then 3 months, 6 months, 9 months… The reality is a little more variable: these figures are only indicators and these famous peak days can vary according to the babies, who are not programmed machines. A first often occurs in the first days of life between 7 and 10 days, then another around 3 weeks, then around 6 weeks… but can just as well happen at 4 and 8 weeks depending on the child. “What is certain, continues the pediatrician, is that, still in this first year of dazzling growth, the development is very fast in the first weeks, then the peaks gradually become less frequent during the year. The smaller the child, the faster he grows.”
Anyway, these growth spurts are important and normal. And pediatricians and general practitioners are extremely pay attention to their nutrition because children’s growth and weight gain are dependent on nutritional intake. However, it is quite normal not to grow or grow in the same way all the time and to observe variations.
The signs are often recognizable, especially in a nursing mother who will be very busy. During a growth spurt, or this stage, baby’s behavior changes. Baby during peaks suddenly becomes:
- insatiablea growing child is more often hungry;
- its rhythm is upset, his sleep also, he may wake up more because of hunger;
- It is very demandingor even “pot of glue”;
- tiredness on the side of the nursing mother;
- nipples also solicited in a nursing mother, even cracks.
Remember, however: a growth spurt is a normal and natural phenomenon that occurs in a healthy child. However, if your child does not seem well to you, that he is irritated, even whiny, that he has a fever, so his attitude and his crying may not be from a growth spurt. Better to consult your pediatrician in case of doubt.
In this context, the mother who breastfeeds her child sometimes finds it difficult to follow and the impression that the baby spend the day at the breast. Baby only calms down when he eats and feedings are linked to a much faster pace. It must be said that the breasts and milk intake take a little time to adapt to this sudden new demand.
A less noticeable peak from the bottle
On the bottle-feeding side, however, growth spurts, if they exist just as much,upset less everyday life, since it suffices to propose larger doses of bottles to calm the infant, and moreover, infant formulas anticipate the future needs of the child (source 1).
How long does a growth spurt last?
Are you in your baby’s peak days? Hold fast ! It should only take 24 to 72 hours on average to get back in order, even if it varies from one child to another. But yes, it will pass, especially if you provide your child with what he needs.
To overcome these growth spurts that punctuate baby’s first year and especially his first months, and better support him in this stage, the first thing to do is to respond to baby’s request, and follow his rhythm. “We follow the baby’s progress of course, within reasonable limits (especially for bottles) but we meet his needs” confirms the pediatrician “these are times when the baby’s skeleton has high calcium and milk needsthere is no reason to deny it to him”, she concludes.
To better get through this moment, it is advisable to adopt a few habits.
Above all, remember that these growth spurts are completely normal and temporary. Take care of yourself and your baby and stay patient: this is a great year for your baby’s development.
try to rest
Being ultra-solicited as a parent or mom is not easy, and you also have to think of yourself. In the case of growth spurts, take it easy, get help with daily tasks that make you tired.
To make oneself available
To provide for your child’s needs, put yourself in “breastfeeding on demand” and cuddly moments. If your baby is sleeping in your room (in his cradle), this allows you to breastfeed at any time without having to move around. You also have the sling, to quickly respond to your baby’s appetite , the skin-to-skin that can soothe him. momentquite fusional.
Take care of breastfeeding and breasts
To keep pace and not suffer too much if you are breastfeeding, adopt a healthy lifestyle that will benefit both of you: balanced meals, lots of waterrest, herbal teas to promote milk production…
And if you have a lot of questions about the best way to adapt your breastfeeding (source 2) to this “strong” time of baby’s growth, don’t hesitate to callto a midwife or lactation consultant.