At your baby’s three-month check-up your pediatrician asks how many times a night they wake to breastfeed and you stare at her blankly. Or, it’s time for the afternoon feeding and you can’t remember which breast you fed him on last. It can be tough for tired mamas to keep track of their breastfeeding schedule and sessions! That’s why I recommend downloading a breastfeeding tracker.
A what?! Don’t worry: I’ve got your boobs (er, back)!
In this post, we’ll discuss:
What a breastfeeding tracker is
Why you should try a breastfeeding tracker
Plus, the top breastfeeding trackers for iPhones and Androids
What Is a Breastfeeding Tracker?
A breastfeeding tracker records information about your breastfeeding sessions.
If you use an app, most of them allow you to:
Time nursing sessions. You hit ‘start’ when your baby latches and ‘stop’ when they’re done.
Remember what side you fed on. Log which breast you fed baby on, or if you switched between them.
Log important information. In sophisticated apps, you can leave notes for yourself about your baby’s overall health—how long after breastfeeding they had a wet diaper or bowel movement, and more.
Of course, you don’t have to use an app. If you want to go old school with it, a breastfeeding tracker can be a piece of paper and a pen. Free, downloadable charts help mamas track the times of day their baby’s fed and how the feeding lasted. If you give birth in a hospital, the nurses even ask you to complete one while you’re there.
The Big Benefit of a Breastfeeding Tracker
Breastfeeding has so many benefits, but there’s definitely a transitional period for most mamas. It’s not easy!
In the beginning, many midwives and lactation consultants will recommend logging your feeding sessions to ensure baby is getting enough food and you are switching breasts at each session. Some breastfeeding trackers can even log baby’s wet diaper output.
Staying hydrated is so important for breastfeeding mamas, too—some breastfeeding apps also allow mama to track how much water she’s drinking while breastfeeding.
Knowledge is power
By having a log, you can troubleshoot much easier and feel empowered that you are on track. A breastfeeding tracker will help you get to know your baby’s health. You might notice that they always cluster feed a few days before getting a cold, or that they feed less when they have a fever. Breastfeeding trackers can also help in more subtle ways, by telling you if your child is nursing too long on one side or favoring one breast. (Did you know this can impact their vision?!)
A breastfeeding tracker keeps a detailed record right in the palm of your hand.
The Best Breastfeeding Tracker
Baby Daybook – Babycare
The Baby Daybook hits a sweet spot—it has plenty of cool features, but won’t overwhelm a tired mama. And with over 186 reviews and an average rating of 4.5 stars, a lot of other moms agree with me!
Log breastfeeding sessions, when you pumped, when baby had a bottle, or if they had something else to drink or eat. The app grows with your child, at the beginning you track diapers, but eventually, you can track potty training milestones.
There’s a handy daily summary screen, too. See at a glance how much your baby ate, slept, and did that day. Statistics and timelines such as growth charts track trends over time.
It syncs with multiple caregivers, so you always have real-time information at your fingertips.
Other Great Breastfeeding Apps
Even though Baby Daybook is my favorite, there are lots of great breastfeeding apps that will meet your needs. I’ve gathered a few below, but they’re not listed in any particular order.
1. Baby Breastfeeding Tracker App
This app has a lot of nice tracking functions: height, weight, sleeping schedule, and head size tracking are all included. On the “nursing” screen you can tap “R” or “L” to indicate which breast you’re feeding on, and the timer has a handy pause button.
The app calculates growth charts out of the other data, and you can even add pictures, sounds, and videos! Particularly nice for moms who work outside the home as the data syncs with other users for a complete schedule.
While the app is free, you can pay $1.99 to add in diaper tracking, bath time, medication and vaccination information and doctor’s visits.
2. Baby Feeding Log
This app doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles, but it’ll do the job. On the tracking screen for feedings, you can pick right, left, or bottle, which is a nice option to have. It gives you your daily totals and lets you track diaper changes. If you forget to push ‘stop’ on a feeding, you can edit the app.
It’s free, with in-app purchases.
3. First Year – Baby Feeding Timer, Sleep, Diaper Log
The app also integrates the World Health Organization’s growth charts to show you if your baby is on track. When you input diaper changes, there are colored bars with sliders to record the color of the urine or poop. The search function is helpful if you’re at the doctors and need to find an entry.
Its basic functions are free, but it costs $4.99 to get access to the full version and an additional $2.99 if you want to export the data to a PDF.
4. Feed Baby
Feed Baby goes up to age five, which is great if you’re planning to nurse your toddler! If you had twins, you’ll want to look at this app, since it allows you to track two babies. The usual features—feeding tracking, sleep, diapers, naps and baths—are all present in this breastfeeding tracker.
Graphs, timelines and charts also help you identify trends and patterns in your baby’s activities. And the app syncs with other devices, so you’ll have a complete log even if someone else is watching baby.
In-app purchases cost up to $4.99.
5. Baby Connect (Activity Log)
Brace yourself, because this app really will do it all! It calculates weekly averages and generates graphical reports and trending charts of your baby’s growth, nursing time, and more. You can make a note of when your baby was sick and if you gave her any medicines or natural remedies. Plus, it’ll send you reminder alarms if you’re late for a feeding.
Data can be exported to html, csv, or email so you can share it with your pediatrician.
Data can also be input by a babysitter or nanny through the online interface, even if they don’t have the same smartphone as you do.
Plans cost $4.99, $44.99, or $89.99. Don’t gasp—the higher prices are for daycares who want to track multiple children.
6. Breastfeeding Newborn tracker, pump and baby diary
Track all the standard information in this breastfeeding tracker: time of day, how long, and which breast. A nice perk? You can also add pumping data. I included this app, because it also allows you to record your baby’s consumption of other liquids of solids, and leave comments about how your baby reacted.
Unique among the other apps on this list, this app has 40 different language options. You can choose whether you want liquids measured in ounces or millimeters, too.
7. Breastfeeding – Baby Tracker App
Another Android breastfeeding tracker, the Breastfeeding – Baby Tracker App tracks breastfeeding and pumping times, sleep, and growth. The breastfeeding functions are free, but if you also want to track naps or diapers, you’ll have to pay for it.
The night mode is a thoughtful touch. Configure the screen to be darker for nighttime feedings, so you don’t wake up other adults in the room, or expose your baby to blue light.
8. bCare – Baby Tracker and Diary
Record notes about your baby’s day and take photos of activities in the bCare app, just like an old-fashioned paper diary. bCare lets you create widgets and track several children within the app.
In addition to the usual tracking functions, including sleep and diaper changes, bCare sends health and baby care reminders. It’s a good, basic breastfeeding tracker.
Another Great Breastfeeding App
It may not be a breastfeeding tracker, but this app is a beautiful way to celebrate your breastfeeding bond.
Tree of Life Breastfeeding Photos
Tree of life breastfeeding photos have gone viral for a reason—they’re gorgeous! The roots of a tree are planted in the mother’s breast, with the branches and leaves growing up into baby’s mouth.
These photos are easy to recreate. To create your own:
Choose your favorite breastfeeding photo.
Download the PicsArt app and tree of life sticker pack.
Insert and position your favorite tree over the photo.
If you want more effects and filters, click the “magic” button. Otherwise, save and share your amazing creation!
How About You?
Do you use a breastfeeding tracker? Do you think they’re helpful, or are you concerned about how much of our children’s lives are becoming digitized?
Read more: mamanatural.com