Posted by: babybumper | September 11, 2010

Dinner Bell: Recognizing 3 Stages of Hunger

Alert Animation

Thanks to all the cuties on YouTube for this Lesson on Recognizing Signs of Hunger! Do you have an idea for a YouTube Lesson? Do you have a cute video of your sweetie? Post in the comments below.

Some delineate 3 stages in Hunger Cues.

  • Early
    • Mouth movements, noises
  • Active
    • Rooting, Hunting for the breast, alertness, animation
  • Late
    • Crying

During the Active Hunger phase, a baby begins to move his body in a way to initiate breastfeeding. If skin –to-skin, the baby may self latch. The baby is born with a tendency to hustle and bustle toward nursing. When a newborn begins to feel hunger pains, his alertness and activity will increase.

The Signs: alert eyes, squirming, snuggling, clenching his fists by this face, brushing a hand across his face, increased leg and arm movement

This munchkin may be beginning to feel empty-bellied. She is alert and active. Half-way through the video she begins to also show signs by turning her head back and forth, brushing her hands across her face, and licking her lips.

See how animated this little grazer is! His eyes are alert, arms and legs flailing, head is turning, hands are on his face, and mouth is moving.

Increased activity and alertness frequently come from an empty-bellied baby. Catch the cue and your baby will jump right in to a banquet.

“While breastfeeding may not seem the right choice for every parent, it is the best choice for every baby.” Amy Spangler

Psst… love baby videos? Dr. Jack Newman has some great ones on breastfeeding. Click here to check it out.



  1. […] your hospital stay. The mom and baby begin to work together. The youngster begins to give better cues, and the mom begins to learn what those cues mean. Her milk actually begins to flow when the baby […]

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