Feeding your baby

Safety alert – self feeding pillow

Self-feeding pillows/prop feeders present a risk of serious harm or death from choking or aspiration pneumonia.

Urgent Safety Alert issued for baby self-feeding pillows – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

We are “Baby Friendly”

Our health visiting service has been accredited as “Baby Friendly” with the UNICEF Baby Friendly Initiative. The UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative (BFI) enables public services to better support families with feeding and developing close and loving relationships, so that all babies get the best possible start in life. Find out more about what that means, and the standards we have to adhere to: 

Learn more about the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative

Baby Friendly Standards – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

Healthy Start food vouchers and vitamins

Healthy Start: (help to buy healthy food and milk): Get help to buy food and milk (Healthy Start)

Healthy Start Easy Read: Easy Read leaflet – Photography.pdf

Vitamins for children: Getting vitamins – Get help to buy food and milk (Healthy Start)

A-Z countywide infant feeding support

see here: Infant feeding support – Health Visiting ServiceHealth Visiting Service (oxfordhealth.nhs.uk)

General information about feeding your baby

However you choose to feed your baby, new babies have a strong need to be close to their parents, as this helps them to feel secure and loved. When babies feel secure, they release a hormone called oxytocin. This acts like a fertiliser for their growing brain, helping them to be happy babies and more confident children and adults. Holding, smiling and talking to your baby also releases oxytocin in you, which helps you to feel calm and happy. Find out more about building a happy baby and helping you to feel more calm and happy: Building a Happy Baby (unicef.org.uk)

There is growing evidence that skin to skin contact between you and your baby helps both of you in so many way. Find out more here: Skin-to-skin contact – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

Information about feeding your baby: Off to the best start (unicef.org.uk)

Dads, partners and breastfeeding

Do see our service leaflet on supporting breastfeeding

Dads, partners and breastfeeding


Breastfeeding | Feeding Your Baby | Start for Life (www.nhs.uk)

General breastfeeding information & support

Best Beginnings Information hub: Information Hub tips on pregnancy & parenting/Best Beginnings

Best Beginnings Breastfeeding videos: Breastfeeding Videos | Best Beginnings

Breastfeeding information in languages other than English: Foreign language resources – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

The benefits of breastfeeding: The benefits of breastfeeding – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

Infant Feeding Team video playlist – YouTube

Breastfeeding and relationship building in the early days and weeks

How to support your baby to position and attach to the breast

Breastfeeding: Positioning and attachment video: Positioning and attachment video – Baby Friendly Initiativ (unicef.org.uk)

Breastfeeding: ineffective attachment video: Ineffective attachment video – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

Expressing your breast milk

Breastfeeding: Hand expression video: Hand expression video – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

How to know that your baby is getting enough milk in the early weeks

Sleep and caring for your baby at night

Caring for your baby at night leaflet – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

Sleep and night time resources – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

Feeding when out and about

FeedFinder app: TripAdvisor for breastfeeding | Open Lab (ncl.ac.uk)

Breastfeeding after returning to work

Breastfeeding at study or work – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

For info on introducing solid foods at 6 months see here:

Introducing solid foods – Health Visiting ServiceHealth Visiting Service (oxfordhealth.nhs.uk)

Faltering growth

Sometimes a baby will experience insufficient weight gain or an absence of adequate physical growth compared to other children of similar age and sex. We call this faltering growth. On these occasions your child will have a medical assessment and your health visitor will invite you to clinic more often in order to have your baby weighed and will liaise with medical support as needed. The health visitor will follow the Oxfordshire “Faltering Growth” pathway in order to support your child in their growth and development. Faltering growth used to be called “failure to thrive”.

Overcoming breastfeeding problems

These website offers advice for tongue tie, colic, mastitis, sore nipples, thrush, among other things.

Support for parents – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

Mixed feeding

Mixed Feeding | Feeding Your Baby | Start for Life (www.nhs.uk)

Formula and bottle feeding

Bottle Feeding | Feeding Your Baby | Start4Life (www.nhs.uk)

Infant milks: Infant milks for parents & carers — First Steps Nutrition Trust

Bottle feeding resources – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

Infant formula and responsive bottle feeding (unicef.org.uk)

When to weigh your baby

Your midwife or health visitor will support you if your baby loses a large amount of weight or does not regain their birthweight by 2 weeks, or there are any concerns about feeding or weight gain as your baby grows.

Recommendations from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health:

Your baby will be weighed during their first 2 weeks by your midwife to make sure they’re regaining their birthweight. Most babies are at, or above, their birthweight by 2 weeks. After that time, for a well-baby, they only need to be weighed at the time of routine checks and injections (that is at around 2, 3, 4 and 13 months of age). Your baby will usually only be weighed more often than these recommendations if there are concerns about their health or growth.

Some parents ask to have their babies weighed more often than this for reassurance that their baby is healthy. However weight is a late indictor of your baby’s progress and it is more important to observe their feeding, general behaviour, stool and urine output, and whether they are growing into bigger clothes. Regular weighing is not always helpful, and can cause unnecessary worry especially if over a short period of time. For example, if one week your baby was weighed just after a big feed but the next week they were weighed after a big nap and before a feed, this could make it look as if they had not gained weight. Weights measured over a longer time are more likely to show the true weight change. This is why it is recommended that babies should preferably be weighed at the times recommended above and not be weighed more often than once a month from 2 weeks to 6 months of age, no more than every 2 months up to 1 year of age, and no more than every 3 months after that, unless there are special reasons. The time between weighing is longer for older babies because they are growing less quickly.

Your midwife or health visitor will support you if your baby loses a large amount of weight or does not regain their birthweight by 2 weeks, or if there are any concerns about feeding or weight gain as your baby grows. Your baby will usually only be weighed more often than these recommendations if there are concerns about their health or growth.

Your baby’s weight and height – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Growth charts – information for parents and carers | RCPCH

What, When and How to Measure (rcpch.ac.uk)

Dummies and your child

7-dummy-factsheet-2017-1.pdf (lullabytrust.org.uk)

Thanks to Oxford University Hospital Infant Feeding Team and Best Beginnings for the informative feeding videos on this page.

Page last reviewed: 15 December, 2023