Baby Falling Asleep While Breastfeeding

Does your baby fall asleep five minutes of the beginning of feeding? Have you tried lots of methods to try and arouse your baby with no success? You have to understand that feedings are drawn-out. They take a longer time. 

You do not have to freak out. It might seem quite odd but well stick with me. I know how it feels. All newborns do fall asleep while nursing. However, your baby must stay awake until feeding is done.

Why keep newborn awake when breastfeeding?

Breastfeeding is naturally sleep-inducing though you have to keep your baby awake throughout the whole ordeal.  To some moms, breastfeeding is a fast and efficient manner to get their babies to sleep.  There are periods where you have to see that your child is awake during breastfeeding.

Such scenarios include when your baby falls asleep early during feeding without getting full or when you are planning to wean your child.

Things which might make the baby sleepy include

  • Difficult labor where the mom is given medication to relieve pains
  • Jaundice, infection or circumcision
  • Intake of too much milk
  • Inadequate milk in the breasts

Useful tips to keep baby awake during breastfeeding

breastfeeding bed 2

Is your baby falling asleep once she is full and satisfied? That is fine. However, if the baby is having trouble staying awake feeding for at least 10 -15 minutes, you need to wake her up. The following tactics might be of help.


Is your latch good, but your baby is just plain sleepy? Skin-to-skin contact might be helpful. Remove your top and bra plus your baby’s clothes. You can leave the diaper on. Then, lay her on your chest. It might stimulate the baby enough to get her to feed.

If she begins to suck but not drinking, try squeezing your breast firmly though gently. It will help her to start drinking again. Keep squeezing until she gets full

Offer both breasts before the formula

You can as well offer the baby both breasts before you give her formula or pumped milk. Try not to give her just a bottle. It will work well, especially if your baby cluster feeds too much.

Rub your fingers under her chin

Is your five months old baby falling asleep while breastfeeding? Rubbing your fingers under her might help. It might wake her up to start nursing again. Are you worried about your supply? Why not make sure you pump in time. Your milk supply will always stay there.

Burping might help

When you burp your baby, do you put her on your shoulder? If so, why not try holding her away from your body? You can do this with your hand to support her chin. It might help keep your baby awake. You can also try to tilt the baby from side to side, back and forth. It will contribute to work any bubbles up and out.

Change the baby position

breastfeeding livingroom

You can use positioning to keep the baby awake during feeding. Things like talking or singing to the baby, rubbing her feet, arms, spine gently might also help. It might prove beneficial in keeping your baby awake for proper feeding.

Switching the lighting

Another way you can try keeping your baby awake to breastfeed properly might be to turn off bright lights. Dimming the lights might make the baby open her eyes. Babies are sensitive to bright lights, so they tend to shut their eyes, which makes them go asleep.

Changing baby diaper

You might also find it helpful to change her diaper as a way to get your baby to breastfeed again. It helps to wake the baby up for more feeding.

There are some exceptions

Babies typically feel drowsy as they breastfeed

So you do not have to worry much when your baby does the same except if you have concerns about gaining weight or jaundice.

Newborns with jaundice get very sleepy

It is, therefore, important that you keep your baby awake. So, you have to keep attempting breastfeeding him at least every 2 hours during the day. The more you breastfeed them, the more poop they are likely to do. So, it will help to lessen jaundice, which will make them become more alert.  

When you are worried about weight gain

Are you concerned about weight gain for your newborn? Then, be sure that you use breast massage plus compressions. It will help to maximize the amount of breast milk your baby is likely to take in a while feeding. Newborns are smart enough not to waste energy at the breast when they are not getting milk.

So, use breast compressions without hesitation if you want to encourage milk flow to increase. You can try switching breasts every 5-7 minutes. It will help the flow to become faster, and the baby will suck more.

Falling asleep while breastfeeding

baby put down 2

Are you feeling sleep deprived of sitting in a dimly lit room feeding your baby? Well, you need to get worried about falling asleep. Sorry, but it is not a coincidence to fall asleep while breastfeeding. The whole process combines deprivation of sleep and release of hormones, which encourage bonding.

Here is what to do to keep yourself from falling asleep as your baby feeds

  • Make the room a bit lighter
  • Play music through headsets to keep you awake
  • Breastfeed from the bedroom
  • Take a cup of ice-cold water to drink during feeding

You might be facing this a lot. Baby wakes up at night, and you feed him but end up falling asleep. Then, you wake up when he is very comfy and sleeping happily. You do not have to get too concerned since, somehow, as you are sleeping, your mind knows you have your baby beside so you will hardly move.

I hope this article has helped answer your question on what to do when the baby sleeps while breastfeeding. Have any trick which works for you? Do share it in the comments below. Do not forget to share the article with your circles; someone might need it.

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