February 17, 2017

Concerned friend posts on forum asking other mum’s if the advice sounds correct? It sparked concern from mother’s across the globe.

olynicole was concerned for her cousin after some advice she received regarding her newborn baby. She posted on the Babycenter forum asking other mum’s for their opinions.

“My cousin just gave birth, baby hasn’t eaten in almost 48 hours. She is being (well trying to be bf) Baby hasn’t latched onto breast at all in almost 48hours. Cousin said her doctor/nurses told her it’s fine, and baby can go up to 5 days without eating right after birth.

I’m not gonna pretend I’m an expert, but this doesn’t seem right to me. Has anyone’s Pedi told them this? Tried to find anything online about it and can’t. I was told by my doctor to not let my son go more than 3-4 hours without eating after he was born, so this just seems odd to me.

Some other info : She is in a “baby friendly” hospital, baby has only had 3 wet diapers in almost 2 days.

I’m not gonna tell her to go against her doctor’s orders, but want to get some other perspective, to know if we should be concerned. (This is her first baby).”

Mother’s were quick to reply encouraging her to speak to the lactation consultant asap or seek another opinion. Some even suggested she offer bub a bottle while her milk comes in.  Although that does go against advice from the LC.

newborn 5dys without food

Fed is Best Foundation also shared their concerns about this kind of information saying, “This is the kind of dangerous advice that moms are told at “Baby-Friendly” hospitals. Yet they are never told the complications associated with not supplementing their hungry babies until the complications happen.”

Australian Breastfeeding Assoc says, “Newborns have tiny tummies and so need to feed frequently. For example, for the first couple of days of a newborn’s life, their tummy is about the size of a marble. By day 10 their tummy is about the size of a ping pong ball. Thereafter, their tummy is about the size of their own fist. Feeding frequently in the early weeks helps make sure you have a good milk supply.

Because breastmilk is easily digested, it is common for breastfed babies to feed 8–12 times in a 24-hour period. This usually means that your baby will breastfeed on average every 2–3 hours around the clock (day and night), with possibly one longer stretch (eg up to about 5 hours) between feeds somewhere in a 24-hour period. The length of time between feeds can vary greatly from baby to baby.”

An update on mum and bub reads, “My cousin did end up giving her daughter a bottle last night, as baby was non stop crying. She ate really well. This morning with the LC baby did latch on for a while and was able to drink from the breast, and has been feeding from the breast all day today! Mama and baby are now home and both are doing well.”

Would you be concerned if a doctor gave your friend or loved one this advice?

Share your comments below.

Image shutterstock

  • So glad all is well now – I would not have been happy with that advice and was told the complete opposite by my doctor when my baby at about 5 months refused to feed. But a newborn needs feeding every few hours. [Hope this baby friendly hospital didn’t look after birds – they can cope for a few days without food].


  • Not sure I would be comfortable if my new baby didn’t eat for thus long. Not do much hunger wise, more hydration issues


  • A second opinion or third if still not happy is always a good call.
    So glad all is well now though.


  • If I received advice that didn’t seem right, I would certainly be seeking a second opinion.


  • Doesn’t aprears to be right… but not an expert


  • I must admit I find this astounding. When my middle daughter was born she was an amazing sleeper. She was classic…would feed and then sleep for 4 hours and wake for another feed and at night she would sleep 8 hours. The nurses in the hospital told me that I couldnt leave her to sleep all night as she was too young so i must wake her after 4 hours and feed her. I left the hospital on day two and I never woke her at night as she was gaining weight. But its so odd that I was told that and this woman is told something totally opposite


  • A Dr. or a quack??? Would the Dr. like to not be allowed to eat or drink for 5 days??? To my way of thinkinh thst is condoning neglect….or abuse. It sounds like a baby’s risk of life to me. Kidney Failure. I would think the baby would be in pain from crying so much – sore throat, and wind pain from gulping in air.


  • That seems quite dangerous advice, and I’m surprised a hospital would offer it.


  • Yes that advice would concern me !
    Like older people babies can dehydrate quickly, especially when the weather is warm. This can be life-threatening !


  • Thats insane! That poor little bub and mum. I hope baby continues to feed well and mum gets good support.

    • Let’s hope she gets sensible support and guidance.


  • that seems crazy to me, I couldn’t handle my baby not feeding for that long, the poor bub would be in so much pain from hunger!


  • I wouldn’t be happy with that advice at all and definitely would have asked a second opinion. Does not sound right salt all


  • Glad it worked out for mum and bub. Always seek advice if it does not feel right.


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