Breastfeeding can come natural to many mommies out there. Sometimes the journey that begins when a baby is born can be different then what's been planned in your head. Breastfeeding can be an amazing bond between mom and baby, but that doesn't mean it doesn't come without its challenges. Real talk, breastfeeding is hard work. Here are 10 breastfeeding tips every new mom should know.
Breastfeeding for Beginners: What to Expect
When you're in the hospital, you have nurses at your beck and call. Everyone is willing to come and check on you and make sure you and baby are doing ok, help baby latch, and give you some pointers. During your hospital stay, the lactation consultant on staff may even come in and give you some advice on what you can do when you bring your new bundle of joy home.
Once the staff is gone and it's just you and your crying baby, all the confidence and dreamt up ideas of how this all works suddenly fade.
Don't worry, you're NOT alone.
What can you do? Make sure you line up help at home in advance. Leave the hospital with any information about further lactation consulting, support groups, and breastfeeding classes that might be available to you.
Below are some tips that'll help get you through the first few weeks of breastfeeding.
Breastfeeding Tips for New Moms
Your Nipples Might Be Sore
Let's face it, the overall feeling of breastfeeding is new to your body. Your nipples are a sensitive area and the constant sucking of a newborn baby's clasped gums doesn't exactly feel good, it might even hurt at first. It does get better. Your skin eventually toughens up and your baby will learn to properly latch and the pain goes away.
Be ready for possible nipple cracking and soreness. Be sure you stock up on nipple cream!
Get Some Comfy Clothes
Nursing is difficult at first and when you're in the hospital and in a gown, it might not dawn on you that once you put actual clothing on the process gets harder. Invest in some nursing tanks before baby arrives. You can even pack a few in your hospital bag, you'll be living in them.
Stock up on lots of breast pads. When your milk comes in you'll feel extremely full and when baby isn't ready to eat your breasts might leak milk. Instead of doing even more laundry then a newborn brings to the table, stock up on breast pads to help absorb some of the milk.
Get Plenty of Nutrition
Breastfeeding moms burn lots of calories. It's a lot of work for your body to be able to feed your precious little one. Even though you'll be tired and busy, make the time to eat. Have your partner stock the house with ready to eat and accessible snacks that you can eat quickly and with one hand!
It's important that you stay hydrated. You'll want to keep water bottles filled so they are ready to go! Drinking lots of water will help keep your milk supply up.
Create A Place to Nurse Or Pump
Pick a spot in your home to nurse or pump. It can be anywhere that's quiet and peaceful to you and baby. Having a new baby is overwhelming as it is, family members want to visit and see the baby and sometimes too much commotion isn't good for you or your baby. It could just be a distraction. It can be best to remove yourself from the business and go to your "spot" just you and baby and you might be more successful.
Make it a restful place. Keep a basket of burp clothes, nipple cream, breast pads, chap stick, water and snacks. Everything will be readily available and you'll be able to sit and rest for as long as you and baby need.
Build A Healthy Milk Supply
A new mom might wonder how much milk their baby is getting and if they're eating enough. Try not to stress. Your baby will let you know when he or she is hungry. Nursing on demand is actually a good way to establish a healthy milk supply and get a feel for how often baby wants to eat. Over time they will naturally form their own feeding schedule.
Don't Pump Too Soon
If you plan on pumping as well as breastfeeding, don't pump too soon. You might create an oversupply of milk. It's a good idea to wait until your milk is established.
Planning for Back To Work
If you plan on returning to work after baby but still want to breastfeed you may want to consider pumping. Once your milk is established you can start pumping in between feedings and store milk in the freezer. This will help give you a jump start on what baby will need for when you return to work.
If you don't give your baby a bottle until you go back to work, you won't know how much milk he or she will need. Store milk in smaller ounce bags so that you can combine them to make a bigger bottle.
Don't Put Pressure on Yourself
Breastfeeding can be a very rewarding experience. Don't let the stress or pressure from yourself or anyone else ruin that time with baby no matter how long you choose to breastfeed for. There are some bumps in the road but as long as you and baby are both happy and it's a journey you want to continue, then just know it does get easier.
Helpful Breastfeeding Tips
If you need more information on breastfeeding and what to expect. Below are some great websites that offer further expertise.
Also make sure you follow up with your pediatrician or obstetrician for medical advice and needs.
♥ ~ The Nature’s Baby Organics Family