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Water for Babies

water for babies

My daughter is just 2 months old and eating CONSTANTLY (it seems).  Sometimes, she eats every 4 hours and sometimes, she eats every two.  She is already "eating" 6 ounces every feeding.  When she wants a bottle every two hours, can I give her some water instead of more milk?

Two month old children typically feed every two to three hours. The average two month old will take about 20 ounces of milk per day. The key to knowing if your daughter is eating enough calories is her growth. This should be discussed with her health care provider at her 2 month check up. If your daughter is growing well and is overall happy I would recommend you gradually increase the spacing of her feedings. There is a direct correlation between sleeping through the night and being able to space out feeding to every 4 hours.

As a whole, pediatricians do not recommend water for young children. When parents give infants excessive water, they can cause electrolyte changes that trigger seizures. In the 1960s and early 70s pediatricians routinely recommend extra water to compensate for that generations formula’s imperfections. Today’s formulas are complete and there is no need for extra water.

In Orlando, many of my patient’s parents ask about giving water on hot days. After four months, I am okay with giving some extra water to healthy well grown children beyond 4 months old. My rule of thumb is children can have the same number of ounces of water per day as they are old in months. Such that a 5 month old could have 5 ounces of water a day.



Written December 2010 by
Dr. Gordon, Orlando Pediatrician






gregorygordonmd.com is intended to help parents understand the needs and behaviors of children. The information presented in the site is the opinion of Gregory Gordon, M.D.and does not reflect the opinion of his partners. This website is owned exclusively by Doctors insights LLC. The advice in this site does not apply to all children. Always consult your healthcare provider for your individual needs.

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