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  • Writer's pictureHannah Norton

Second Night Syndrome


Many new parents are quite caught off guard by night number two with their new baby!

After the first 24 hours of sleepiness and even having to "wake baby to feed," baby seems to wake up and discover that they are ravenous!

All. Night. Long. Feeding, then crying, then feeding then crying! It's easy to become concerned that maybe you're just not producing enough milk and your new baby may very well starve. Cue deep feelings of failure (which are then exacerbated because you're exhausted from the birth process and now not sleeping all night!)

It makes sense if you think about all that baby has been through - the physical exertion of birth and their bodies recovering and adjusting can make them exceptionally tired the first day. But by day two, they wake up and bit and realize that things are SO MUCH DIFFERENT than what they are used to.

They are experiencing a rumbling in their tummy that is quite disturbing. They have new textures on their skin, new noises all around, and the brightness of the lights makes them want to keep their eyes closed. The only thing they recognize is mama. The warmth of her skin makes them feel like they are safe. Home.

Another good reason babies seem to have their "days and nights" mixed up that second day is biological: Prolactin (our milk hormone) is highest when melatonin (our sleep hormone) is highest. And our milk supply is a supply and demand system.

Thus: the more your baby nurses at night, the quicker your milk supply will come in!

So mama, just be prepared. Your little one will need some extra attention on night number two!

Hold them close, lots of skin to skin, nurse as often as they desire, and don't get discouraged! You are doing exactly what you were meant to do! You're doing a great job!

-- Hannah

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