Your baby should begin to be more wakeful and show interest in feedings by the second day.
Signs that your baby is ready to feed include rooting, showing the rooting reflex, chewing/sucking on hands or fingers, or crying, though crying is a late indicator of hunger. As you and your baby get to know each other better, it will become easier to recognize her hunger signals. And that's a good thing since it is much easier to latch on a calm baby.
Babies will breastfeed about every one to three hours.
Your baby should breastfeed a total of 8 to 12 times in 24 hours. These frequent feedings provide your baby with antibody-rich first milk called colostrum and tell your breasts to make mature milk.
Your baby should suckle for at least 10 minutes on the first breast, and may continue for about 30 minutes before letting go. Burp your baby after she is finished feeding on the first breast. Then offer the second breast.
The number of diaper changes will increase as your milk comes in. Your baby should have at least four stools every day after your milk comes in, usually this is on day 4. Your baby should have at least 2 wet diapers the second day and 3 on day three. Babies will also lose weight during the first several days. As your milk comes in your baby should start to gain weight.
You may feel uterine cramping when breastfeeding the first two or three days. This is a positive sign that the baby's sucking has triggered milk let-down. It also means your uterus is contracting, which helps decrease bleeding.
In the first days you may experience nipple tenderness when she latches on or during breastfeeding. Tenderness is usually mild and disappears by the end of the first week. If tenderness persists, develops into pain, or nipple cracking is noted, contact an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant or a health care provider. Remember to use Lansinoh HPA Lanolin in an effort to keep nipples from getting sore.