As with sleeping and crying habits, feeding styles vary from baby to baby depending on what the baby needs at the time. You may notice your baby prefers one of the following styles. (The first five names were coined by researchers at Yale University.)
Barracuda: Immediately latches on and feeds vigorously for ten to twenty minutes.
Excited Ineffective: Goes wild at the sight of the breast, grabs it, loses it, and then screams. Try to feed this baby before she's too hungry, and consider getting help with your latch-on technique.
Procrastinator: This baby will wait for the real milk, thank you very much, and she'll pass on the colostrum. Don't let this initial lack of interest trick you into giving her a bottle of water or formula; just keep trying to latch her on at regular intervals. Pump between feedings to ensure a sufficient milk supply.
Gourmet: This baby will take a delicate taste of the milk, roll it around in her mouth, and perhaps play with the nipple a little before getting down to business. She doesn't like to be rushed.
Rester: This baby likes to nurse a few minutes, rest a few minutes, nurse a few minutes more, take a nap, and then come back for more. Make sure you find a comfortable seat and surround yourself with books, snacks, or whatever you need to keep you happy for what can be a long feeding session.
Billy Goat: This baby butts, tugs, and pummels you while she feeds. She may be frustrated with your milk flow, which may be too slow or too fast for her taste.
Regurgitator: This baby nurses contently for about twenty minutes, then throws half of it back up on your shirt. Then, of course, she's hungry again.
Barnacle: This baby latches on tightly and nurses constantly, almost around the clock.
Sightseer: This baby doesn't want to miss the passing scene, so her eyes and head wander about while she's nursing. If you have a sightseer, you'll be surprised by just how far your nipples can stretch. Sightseeing tends to emerge in the fourth or fifth month.
Desserter: About twenty minutes after a full nursing session, this baby comes back for a couple more sips — for dessert.