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Breastfeeding Mealtime Milestones

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Breast milk is a complete source of nutrients for the infants. Explore the below article to learn more about the milestones in feeding.

Written by

Dr. Sanchana. N

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Arjun Chaudhari

Published At September 11, 2023
Reviewed AtMarch 26, 2024


Mealtime milestones associated with breastfeeding denote significant phases in a baby's development from birth to toddlerhood when they go from being exclusively breastfed to starting to eat solid foods. These developmental milestones are crucial for the child's physical growth as well as for strengthening the bond between the infant and mother. This shift affects a child's growth, development, and general well-being. It is an exciting and dynamic process that takes place over a few months. To shed light on the amazing journey of nourishment and nurturing, the major breastfeeding mealtime milestones and their importance in a child's early years are depicted here.

What Are Different Mealtime Milestones?

  • At First Week: Taking hold and follow latching technique. Make sure the baby knows how to latch on properly during the first week. This not only helps prevent sore, cracked, or blistered nipples but also guarantees that the body will receive the signal to produce more milk, resulting in the arrival of the full milk supply.

  • Around Two Weeks: Maintaining supply and demand. Throughout the initial few months, a lot of things change, not the least of which is an astounding quantity of growth and development, longer stretches of uninterrupted sleep at night, and the establishment of a more regular breastfeeding schedule. Be ready for growth spurts that will inevitably increase the baby's need for more milk along with these changes.

  • At Around One Month of Age: A baby should be able to feed for at least 10 minutes at each feeding. During this time, a baby will begin to develop the ability to coordinate their sucking, swallowing, and breathing. This is an important step in learning how to feed properly. At this age, a baby may also begin to show signs of hunger and fullness.

  • By Two Months of Age: A baby should be able to feed for at least 15 minutes at each feeding. At this age, a baby should also be able to coordinate her sucking, swallowing, and breathing better. She may also start to show signs of hunger and fullness more often.

  • At Four Months of Age: A baby should be able to feed for at least 20 minutes at each feeding. At this age, a baby should be able to drink from a bottle and may begin to take in solid foods. A baby may also start to show signs of hunger and fullness more often.

  • At Six Months of Age: A baby should be able to feed for at least 30 minutes at each feeding. Especially the first meals and the first set of teeth. Be assured that babies can begin eating solid foods before they have teeth, and it is entirely possible to comfortably continue breastfeeding babies even after they have teeth. Now is the time to introduce some baby cereal, which are welcome to combine with breast milk, along with pureed meats, fruits, and vegetables, to the baby's mealtime menu, with the introduction of solid foods being recommended at around six months. It is also around this time to start noticing the first signs of the front teeth poking through, even though some infants delay their first teeth until 9 to 12 months or even later.

  • At Nine Months of Age: A baby should be able to feed for at least 45 minutes at each feeding. Unsurprisingly, nine-month-olds are naturally curious. As a result of their newly developed interest in the outside world could find that the child is more easily distracted and seems to be disinterested in breastfeeding more frequently. Instead of becoming discouraged by this, think of it as a temporary developmental setback that may just require breastfeeding in a designated space with fewer distractions.

  • At Twelve Months of Age: A baby should be able to feed for at least an hour at each feeding. At this age, a baby should be able to take in solid foods and may start to show signs of hunger and fullness more often.

How to Make the Child Achieve the Breastfeeding Milestones?

To ensure that a child reaches their breastfeeding milestones, there are a few steps that parents can take.

  • First, create a comfortable and safe environment for breastfeeding. Ensure the baby is held in a comfortable position and the mother is relaxed. This will help the baby latch on correctly and feed for longer periods of time. Additionally, make sure that the room temperature is comfortable for the mother and baby.

  • Second, ensure that the baby is receiving enough nutrition. Babies should be fed on demand and not on a strict schedule. This means the baby should be fed whenever they show hunger. Additionally, mothers should take care to ensure that their baby is receiving enough breast milk. This can be done by keeping track of the baby's weight and measuring the milk the baby consumes.

  • Third, avoid the use of pacifiers and bottles. Pacifiers and bottles can interfere with a baby's ability to latch on correctly and feed effectively. Instead, mothers should focus on providing a comfortable and safe environment for the baby to feed.

  • Fourth, encourage skin-to-skin contact during feeding. Skin-to-skin contact helps to create a feeling of closeness between the mother and child. Additionally, it can help the baby to feel secure and calm, which can help them feed more effectively.

  • Finally, it is important for mothers to take care of themselves. A physically and emotionally taxing process, breastfeeding and it is important for mothers to take the time to rest and take care of themselves.

By following these steps, parents can help their child reach their breastfeeding milestones. It's important to remember that a newborn may need some time to attain these milestones. However, parents can help their baby reach their breastfeeding goals with patience and dedication.


Breastfeeding is an important mealtime milestone for a baby. As a baby grows and develops, certain mealtime milestones should be observed. By understanding these milestones, parents can ensure their baby gets the nutrition that is needed to grow and develop properly.

Dr. Arjun Chaudhari
Dr. Arjun Chaudhari

Obstetrics and Gynecology


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