Whenever we try to feed our son a bottle, he drinks about 1 or 2 ounces, then slowly drifts to sleep, and slows down to such a gradual pace that he's not actually taking in anything at all.

This seems to happen whether it's from the breast or from the bottle, both formula and breast milk, and ends with us having to feed him an ounce, put him down, pick him up when he's inevitably aware that he's hungry again, and repeat 3-4 times for an hour.

How can I prevent this from happening? He hasn't always done this when we are holding and feeding him, but lately it seems to happen nearly every time we try to feed him at all.

  • Does this help? parenting.stackexchange.com/q/41524/9327 Nov 4, 2021 at 22:56
  • 1
    @anongoodnurse For some reason, this didn't show up when I was putting my question together - but this looks like good advice. I'll share it with my wife and we'll see if any of it helps.
    – Zibbobz
    Nov 5, 2021 at 1:30

1 Answer 1


Is your concern is based on the pattern of weight gain, a low number of wet and soiled diapers, or the inconvenience to the parents, or something else?

Without more information, it's difficult to say anything specific with confidence. I wonder if the baby might be experiencing nipple confusion? Getting milk from the breast is generally harder work than getting milk from a bottle. For more information about nipple confusion, see the La Leche League's article on this topic.

Every baby has his or her own feeding style. If your baby is gaining well, then perhaps frequent grazing and snacking is just this baby's personal style.

A visit with the baby's medical provider can rule out, or identify and treat, a health problem such as jaundice, an allergy to formula used in the bottle or supplementer, low muscle tone, etc.

Meeting with a breastfeeding consultant or La Leche League leader can help troubleshoot and fine-tune breastfeeding technique.

Here are two more potentially relevant La Leche League articles, one about the sleepy baby:

and one about jaundice:

There are some baby carriers that allow for quick access to the breast, and this can make life more practical with a baby who likes to eat light and often.

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