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What is dream feeding, how to do and what are its effects?

It involves waking up the baby an hour before mid night and Nurse him with milk. The main motto behind is to prevent baby from waking for that 2 am or 3 am feed as having tummy full will not hamper his sleep.

How to dream feed your baby?

Always lift your baby into position whereby his head is slightly elevated before taking feed and wake him so that he can take his feed. Never feed baby that is lying down or deeply in sleep as it may risk choking. After feeding make lift your baby upright ad pat its back for few minutes to allow wind to escape.

Tips for dream feeding:

As baby is fast asleep you have to make the baby start taking milk for that you need to trigger the rooting reflex by gently stroking his cheek with your nipple and if this does not work try changing your position to rouse your baby a little more or tickle his palm or foot.

See that you do not disturb the baby too much to awake him. It takes time to master this type of feeding so do not lose hope if your first few attempts fail as after few nights it will become routine and your baby will get used to.

Merits of dream feeding:

It aids the baby to sleep longer as it fills their tummies and eventually settles them

(2) It is good for babies to wake every few hours for feed

(3) With dream feed moms can get longer night sleep time

(4) This act is easier as compared to night feed in early hours.

You can ask your husband to give dream feed so you can sleep. If you are breast feeding you need to use expressed breast milk – milk that is expressed in the evening.

Demerits of dream feeding:

As your baby is fast asleep it may be difficult for you to wake him up

Natural rhythm of baby’s sleep is disturbed and it is not advisable to interfere with circadian rhythm may turn out to be counter productive

Some babies may tend to more wake up frequently after waking it up for the first time

Dream feed sets up night time feeding habit that is hard to break

It may not be easy to know when to stop dream feed and when the baby is ready for sleep

For many babies it is immaterial on how long they sleep at night as they still wake at time they would have done

The main intention of dream feeding the baby is your baby will take in full feeding while still being mostly asleep which will maximize the amount of sleep and will sleep for longer hours before his next feed. This works for both breast feed and top fed babies. It can be great technique to maximize sleep during new born stage.

Here is an example how to dream feed your baby:

1. Baby goes to sleep around 8 pm

2. You dream feed around 11 pm before going to bed

3. Baby’s stomach thus gets filled without hampering his sleep and thus it sleeps until 4 am or 6 am giving you unbreakable 6 to 8 hours of sleep.

4. In case your baby wakes up soothe the back the baby back to sleep as you would do during bed time.

Dream feeding works for some and is wonderful thing and the main theory behind is that you will get longer stretch of sleep for yourself.