Here are some useful tips to help new moms with breastfeeding:
Prepare what you need before you start breastfeeding
Breast Pads (Lansinoh brand is recommended). Nipple cream (Medela or Lansinoh works best). You can also ask for the Jack Newman cream prescription from your doctor – to be used very sparingly and only when absolutely needed as this contains some amount of steroids. And last but not the least – a comfortable nursing bra.
Recognize when the baby is hungry
Don’t wait until your baby starts crying before you breastfeed – it’s the last sign babies give when they are hungry,
Some early signs newborns give when they need to be fed ar
- smacking or licking their lips
- sucking on their their hands
- wriggling from side to side
- opening mouth and looking for something to suck
- and crying.
Feeding the baby before she is too hungry will help her not to latch on too strongly on the nipple.
Breastfeed based on hunger cues from baby (which will be frequent) instead of making your own feeding schedules. When a baby needs to it, let them eat. This will help ensure you have ample milk supply as well
Burp the baby after breastfeeding
Gas trapped in the stomach can cause the baby a lot of discomfort and make them refuse to continue feeding. Strive to feed the baby full so the baby will not get hungry again quickly.
Build up your milk supply
Be aware that you will not be overflowing with milk right from the get-go. In the early days of breastfeeding you will be producing what is called the Colostrum. This is yellowish in color, thick and sticky – very good for baby as this is also full of antibodies to help establish the newborn’s immune system
The more frequent you breastfeed in the first few days, the faster you establish your milk supply. You will need to overcome nipple tenderness and lack of sleep.
Wear a comfortable nursing bra to have good circulation around your breast area
It is very important to have a good latch
An incorrect latch will start to damage your nipple and cause agonizing pain when feeding. You will know you have the correct latch when the nipple comes out round (not flattened or stretched-out) and pinkish (not white).
Some points to remember to establish a good latch:
Tummy to tummy – Your newborn’s tummy should be against your tummy
The newborn’s head should be tilted slightly backwards and the nipple pointing towards the baby’s upper palate
Try to include as much of the areola (the dark area around the nipple) into the baby’s mouth
Try to feed both breasts to the baby if possible
If the baby can only finish one breast, remember to give the other breast first on the next feeding
Let the baby empty the breast
The milk at the end of the feeding, hindmilk, is more concentrated (rich in fat and nutrients). Feeding both breasts and emptying them during feedings will help the baby stay full longer (sleep longer), and in turn, will give you a longer break. As well, emptying the breast during feeding will help avoid developing blocked ducts.
Avoid drinking coffee and especially alcohol (obviously)
What you eat is also what your baby is eating in the form of breastmilk, so eat healthily.
Breastfeeding is a wonderful experience
Do not give up.