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Child Safety Tips & Guide

How Do Babies Get Milk Drunk?

Oscar Evans
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Why Do Babies Get Milk Drunk? - Complete Guide

Taking care of a newborn and feeding them constantly takes up most of a new parent’s time. And whether you feed your precious baby from a bottle or breastfeed them, utmost care is required. Because for the first few months of their life, all they do is eat, sleep, and look adorable. And all three of these things can be combined in the picture-perfect view which experts call ‘Milk Drunk’.

A well-fed baby who is sleeping dreamily in their parent’s arms is the definition of parents crushing it. However, for new parents who have seen adults pass out due to liquor, the word drunk will not be soothing. But unlike adults on liquor, a baby drunk on milk requires no intervention.

And to further elaborate on the point, in this article, we discuss all about babies and their milk drunkenness.

What is a Milk Drunk Baby?

The term has been going around for a while and creates a lot of confusion among new mothers. But a milk-drunk baby is not a baby who is intoxicated because of alcohol or some other adult drinks. It is just a happy, relaxed, and satiated baby with its eyes closed in a calm state after breastfeeding.

What is a Milk Drunk Baby?

The sweet smile on their lips as they are about to sleep is pure bliss to witness. As that little spot of milk dribbles drown the corner of their mouth, your baby would seem fully fed. And milk-drunk babies seem satisfied to the point of passing out, happy from the released oxytocin.

Signs Your Baby is Getting Enough Milk

Whether your baby is getting milk drunk or not, there are a few signs to keep in mind while feeding. This will help you understand whether your baby is getting all the milk it needs to grow. The first thing to remember is that babies need to be fed frequently, so your baby should be nursing a lot. Around 8 to 12 times a day is about the right amount.

Your baby will also look fully fed, content, and happy after it’s done nursing. They may have clenched fists, but that will loosen as they release the breast on their own. Weight is another factor that will help assure you that your baby is feeding properly.

Till they are about 4 months old, your baby should gain 5.5-8.5 ounces per week.

Signs Your Baby is Getting Enough Milk .jpg

Another thing to keep track of would be the baby’s stool, which should become yellow. The consistency should also be loose and seedy by day 4, with the baby pooping 3 to 4 times a day. The baby’s diaper should also get frequently wet, about 6 times a day, by the time it’s 5 days old. And always remember that when reaching developmental milestones, an alert and active baby is a well-fed baby.

Do Babies Get Drunk on Milk?

When new mothers talk about their babies getting milk drunk, they do not mean something dark. It is the simple way of a baby falling asleep just after they have drank their fill. The baby gets full and satiated with their share of formula or breastmilk to the point of drowsy euphoria. They release the nipple on their own and relax their body completely.

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You may notice that babies have their fists clenched when they are very young. As they feed, sometimes they move those tiny fists about as if punching the air. But as the baby enters that milk-drunk state, they open their fists and their fingers spread out. Some babies also have a smile of total bliss on their faces, a joyous thing to behold indeed.

Do Babies Get Drunk on Milk?

This happy face, when accompanied by a spot of milk on a sleeping baby, is a sign that they are milk-drunk. The satiated baby will let you know they are full by turning away and going to sleep in your arms. Their drunken state also releases oxytocin in the parent, making the phase uniquely happy for both parent and child.

How Much Milk Makes the Baby Drunk?

For adults, drunkenness can lead to disastrous results. But for babies, their milk drunkenness is cute to witness. But how to make your baby get milk drunk? There is no real formula to achieve the result. Because each baby is different, the amount of milk varies from baby to baby and will depend on their needs.

Milk drunkenness also depends on the baby’s levels of comfort and satiation. But a general rule of thumb is to feed the baby on demand. Meaning if you see that your baby is fussy and seems hungry, it is time to either get the bottle or breastfeed. You will also need to consult your pediatrician on the correct amount.

How Much Milk Makes the Baby Drunk?

As your baby gets bigger, it will start needing more milk. But feeding on demand is a good idea as they will stop by themselves once they are full. Most babies go off to sleep after they are satiated. But if you have a really tired baby, it is advised to encourage them to wake up.

Can Babies Get Drunk Every Time They Drink Milk?

The simple reason why babies get milk drunk is because they are happy and satiated. A full belly is all it needs to relax into a deep slumber. But contrary to popular belief, it’s not about drinking more than their fill. The entire feeding process becomes a bonding experience for them. Nursing, whether be it with a bottle or through breastfeeding, is an exercise that gives your baby the feeling of trust.

But babies grow rapidly during the early years of development, and you will see changes within the first few days. In the beginning, babies get milk drunk very often, especially if the feeding is just before nap time.

However, this changes as they grow a little and get past that newborn stage. Once they cross the 12-week milestone in their life, your baby is very unlikely to get milk-drunk again.

Can Babies Get Drunk Every Time They Drink Milk?

In the early stages, if your baby doesn’t seem milk-drunk that often, there could be several reasons. The most common disturbance to a baby’s relaxation after feeding is reflux. This acts the same way in babies as it does in adults, but it will make your baby gag or spit. Reflux will also make your baby vomit up the contents in its stomach, an unpleasant experience for anyone.

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But addressing the issue can help you gain back that milk-drunken look on your baby’s face. Just make sure to feed in smaller quantities so they can easily drink.

Another reason why your baby will not seem happy and drunk after feeds is due to colic. A colicky baby is otherwise healthy but will cry excessively for a long period of time.

And there is nothing that can be done at this stage except stay strong. But colic is supposed to disappear around 3 months, after which you may just see your happily drunk baby.

Is there any Difference Between Milk Drunk from Formula vs Breast Milk?

Many people think that a formula-fed baby will not be able to achieve the same drunkenness as a breastfed baby. But in reality, both forms of feeding s will fulfill your baby to the point of euphoria. Both formula, as well as breastmilk are rich in healthy nutrients that are needed for a growing baby.

Is there any Difference Between Milk Drunk from Formula vs Breast Milk? .jpg

It is easier to keep track of your baby’s feeding with a bottle. And you can either pump your milk or use a formula to get the same result. And the bonding creates oxytocin in their brains, so breastfeeding is not necessary. Your milk drunk baby will be full of happy nutrients either way and sleep blissfully in your arms.

Is it Bad to Feed Babies to Sleep?

The relationship between a baby’s feeding time and sleep does not concern medical professionals. You can often feed your baby to sleep to get them adorably milk drunk. But doctors will tell new parents to create a sleep schedule solely to help the family as a whole. Newborns will also need to be fed every few hours, even if they go to sleep right after.

Is it Bad to Feed Babies to Sleep?

As the baby grows, you can lessen the frequency of feedings a little to adhere to a schedule. A sleeping routine independent of feeding will also help your baby with sleep. But babies cannot sleep throughout the night till they weigh about 13 pounds. So, till then, you will need to feed a few times a night, despite your sleeping schedule.

Do Babies Seem Floppy After Being Milk Drunk?

Floppy is not a word that can be lightly used around babies. But after a good feeding, your baby will seem to be so euphoric that they relax their entire body. As the tiny fists unclutch, the word floppy might be used to describe the sleepy little body. The milk-drunk babies, as they remain sprawled out in their parent’s arms, are kind of floppy.

Do Babies Seem Floppy After Being Milk Drunk?

But do not confuse a happy baby with one that is difficult to wake up. If your little one isn’t responding to your voice or doesn’t wake up when you change its diaper, visit the doctor. An unresponsive baby is never a healthy one. A sick baby will also not feed well and might spit up a lot. There are also other signs to look out for, like fever or sleeping too much.

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However, if your baby feeds the right amount and has a half grin as it sleeps, fear not. It’s just milk drunk. Enjoy the sight, and let your happy baby remain floppy in peace.

Alcohol Effect on Mother’s Milk

Milk drunk often begs the question of whether alcohol in the mother’s bloodstream has anything to do with it. But the fact is, milk drunkenness is not a serious thing to be questioned. It is one of the joys of parenthood to witness your child being blissfully happy with life.

Alcohol Effect on Mother's Milk

On the other hand, breastfeeding your child while being drunk is an extremely negative thing to do. The alcohol level in the milk would be the same as the level in the mother’s bloodstream, which will harm the child. Doctors agree that it might not make your baby drunk, but it will affect its growth in the long run. So if you are drunk while in the breastfeeding stage, wait for 2 hours before feeding. This way, the alcohol can safely leave your body.

Final Thoughts

The sight of a happy and satiated baby in its parent’s arms is enough to make everyone sigh. But all bets are off when they have that half-triumphant smile on their lips in the sleeping state. That, paired with unclutched fists and a relaxed body, means your baby is milk drunk.

The site also assures new parents that they are crushing it. But the term milk drunk can also make them nervous, especially when they see how the baby seems a bit floppy afterward.

Just remember, it is simply in a euphoric state. But if you have any other queries as a new parent, we are always here to help in the comments!

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is My Baby Spilling Milk While Bottle-Feeding?

Sometimes it may seem like your baby is spilling more milk than it’s drinking. And the simple reason behind it is that the flow of the milk from the nipple of the bottle is too fast. This leads to milk dribbling out of the corner of their mouths as they gulp and sputter during feedings.

How Do I Stop My Baby from Spilling Milk?

There are many ideas you can try to stop your baby from spilling milk. The first one is to hold the baby in an upright position for about 30 minds after feeding. Try to feed more frequently and in smaller amounts so there’s no pressure on your baby’s tummy.

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Oscar Evans
Oscar Evans

Oscar Evans has a Master’s in Dietetics from Cornell University and joined our editorial team as a freelancer in 2019. He has been a key contributor to our health and wellness section and enriched our readers frequently. With over 15 years of experience as a dietitian, he has specialized in nutritional planning for young families. Oscar's approach combines scientific understanding with practical advice, and this is reflected in his writings. He's also an avid gardener, growing his organic produce for his culinary creations.

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