Breastfeeding is a beautiful and natural way to nourish your baby, providing them with essential nutrients and building a strong bond between mother and child. However, it can also be a challenging journey, especially for new mothers.

It is an incredibly rewarding experience, and it is highly recommended for new mothers to provide their infants with nourishment from human milk. This popular practice has far-reaching benefits not only for your baby, but also for you as a mother. In fact, according to the Mayo Clinic, research has indicated that breastfeeding offers a variety of vital nutrients and safeguards against prevalent illnesses including asthma, ear infections, obesity, type 1 diabetes, and stomach infections. Additionally, mothers who breastfeed may experience a decreased likelihood of developing breast and ovarian cancer, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure.1

The key to successful breastfeeding lies in understanding how it works; there’s often more to it than just putting your baby to the breast! Having access to reliable support through family, friends or healthcare services is important so you can transition comfortably into this new practice. Breastfeeding basics such as positioning your baby onto the breast correctly whether sitting or lying down will help make the process easier and ensure that both mother and child are comfortable during feeding times. Making sure your baby is latched on properly will ensure efficient feeding times – if you have any questions don’t hesitate to seek help from your doctor or an experienced lactation specialist.

Free Grayscale Photo of a Mother Breastfeeding Her Child Stock Photo

In this blog post, we will explore crucial information and tips that every new mum needs to know about breastfeeding. From staying together after birth to the importance of exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months, these guidelines will help new mums navigate the joys and challenges of breastfeeding successfully.

It is advised to stay near the baby after childbirth.

Immediately after birth, it is essential to have skin-to-skin contact with your baby. This contact promotes bonding, stimulates the release of important hormones for breastfeeding, and encourages your baby to latch onto the breast. By staying together with your newborn during these precious early moments, you can establish a strong foundation for breastfeeding success.

Ensure that you have the correct position and attachment.

Achieving a proper latch and attachment is crucial for effective breastfeeding. Ensure that your baby’s mouth is wide open, covering a significant portion of the areola. The chin should touch the breast, and the baby’s lips should be flanged outwards. Experiment with different breastfeeding positions to find the one that is most comfortable for both you and your baby.

Be Patient.

Breastfeeding is a skill that both you and your baby need to learn together. It may take time for both of you to get comfortable and find your rhythm. Be patient with yourself and your baby as you navigate this new experience. Seek support from lactation consultants, breastfeeding support groups, or your healthcare provider if you encounter difficulties or have questions.

The feeding schedule can be adjusted based on the baby’s needs.

Newborn babies have small stomachs and need to feed frequently. It is recommended to breastfeed on demand or according to your baby’s cues. Signs that your baby may be hungry include smacking lips, rooting, or putting their hands to their mouth. By feeding your baby when they show signs of hunger, you will ensure they receive the nourishment they need to thrive.

It is advised to keep the baby in the same room as the parents.

Keeping your baby close to you can help establish a strong breastfeeding relationship. Having your baby in the same room allows you to respond quickly to their hunger cues, promote skin-to-skin contact, and establish a sense of security and comfort. It also facilitates bonding and helps you become more attuned to your baby’s needs.

It is recommended to refrain from using pacifiers, bottles, and introducing additional foods.

To establish successful breastfeeding, it is advisable to avoid introducing teats, dummies (pacifiers), or complementary feeds too early. These can lead to nipple confusion and interfere with your baby’s ability to latch onto the breast effectively. In the first few weeks, focus on establishing breastfeeding exclusively to promote a strong milk supply and ensure your baby gets all the benefits of breastfeeding.

It is advised to engage in exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months where possible.

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of a baby’s life. Breast milk provides all the necessary nutrients, antibodies, and enzymes for optimal growth and development. It also offers protection against infections and reduces the risk of certain diseases. After six months, complementary foods can be introduced while continuing to breastfeed for up to two years or beyond.

Breastfeeding offers numerous benefits to both mothers and babies- for the mum, it can help reduce stress levels, encourage weight loss post-pregnancy, and lower the risk of certain cancers. Babies who are breastfed gain important nutrients and antibodies that support their physical development as well as cognitive and psychological development. Additionally, exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months helps protect babies against infections and illnesses. With the right information, support, and dedication, most new mum can successfully breastfeed her baby.

Common challenges and solutions for breastfeeding are

Low Milk Supply:

It is important to recognize that milk supply is dependent on demand. Therefore, if you feed your baby frequently, your body should be able to adjust and produce enough milk for their needs. If you are concerned about low milk supply, try expressing some milk after each feed or supplementing with donor breast milk.

Engorgement:

Engorgement is a very common experience for breastfeeding mothers, often occurring during the first few weeks after childbirth. It is characterised by swollen, firm, and sometimes sensitive breasts that can be uncomfortable and tender to touch. Engorgement happens as the body adjusts to producing breast milk in response to your baby’s feeding needs.

It is normal for the breasts to feel full of milk between feedings throughout your breastfeeding journey; however, it should not be painful or overly uncomfortable. To prevent engorgement or reduce its severity when it does occur, aim to nurse your baby frequently and ensure that milk production is stimulated so that your body does not have too much milk at any given time. Additionally, making sure you eat and drink well will help your breasts maintain a healthy balance of fluid and address any issues with oversupply quickly.

Sore Nipples

Sore and sensitive nipples can be an uncomfortable, yet common, side effect of breastfeeding. During the initial weeks of breastfeeding, the nipples may undergo a period of adjustment to accommodate the baby’s sucking. This adjustment period doesn’t always go smoothly – soreness and sensitivity are perfectly normal symptoms to experience in the early days of breastfeeding.

It is important to pay attention to any signs of cracked or damaged skin on your nipples. If you find that pain isn’t improving after the first few weeks, don’t hesitate to reach out for help from a lactation consultant or healthcare professional. With their expertise and support, you can find tips and specific recommendations tailored for your individual needs. Talk to them about potential strategies that can improve comfort when nursing; these might include using different positions when latching the baby or changing how often feedings happen.

Leaking

Breastfeeding is a natural and rewarding experience for mothers, however, the body often needs time to adjust. One of the most common issues that new mothers face is leaking from their breasts, which can be both uncomfortable and embarrassing. Many women will find that their breasts feel heavy and full throughout the day, leading to milk leaking out. This leaking can range from light spotting to thick streams of breast milk, depending on how well-established feeding sessions are, and how much breastmilk your body produces.

Fortunately, over time, this issue may gradually get better as your body gets used to breastfeeding and adjusts in producing the amount of milk necessary for your baby’s needs. It might also help to express milk using a single breast pump on the opposite breast during your breast feeding session, or wear disposable or cloth pads in your bra once you notice any levels of leaking between feeds. Doing this can keep any wetness away from your clothing and skin while keeping you comfortable throughout the day. Additionally, you will need to practice proper hygiene by changing pads regularly throughout the day and wash reusable ones with mild detergent for reuse.

Expressing and storing breast milk can be a useful tool for when direct breastfeeding is not possible. Breast pumps are a commonly used method for expressing breast milk, but hand-expressing is also an option if needed. If you choose to go that route, here are the factors to consider when selecting a breast pump.

  1. Quietness- It is advisable to maintain a level of discretion and quietness.
  2. Portability- In today’s times, portability is highly valued by many mothers who prefer the convenience of not being restricted to an outlet while expressing milk or carrying a large power box.
  3. Operational options- Battery power is important because it allows for longer pumping sessions without the need to reconnect.
  4. Size- Many pumps today are small in size.
  5. Power- A high-quality pump will have strong suction, a reliable latch, and efficient pumping power.
  6. Versatility- The best breast pumps typically offer multiple suction options to allow you to select the most comfortable one for you.
  7. Quality- When it comes to safety, it is recommended to choose BPA, Latex and phthalate-free products.
  8. Ease of use- Breast pumps are generally designed to be easy for users to operate and offer dependable customer support in case any problems occur.

Welcare Nurture Wearable Electric Breast Pump

The Welcare Nurture Wearable Electric Breast Pump is a practical device for breastfeeding mothers who need to express milk while on the go or during travel.

The Wearable Electric Breast Pump is safe and hygienically designed to fit discreetly in any well-fitting nursing bra. It allows for hands-free, wireless pumping. You can conveniently and effectively pump your breast milk anywhere and anytime. The pump is compact, portable, and lightweight, making it easy to fit into most handbags or baby bags. The anti-backflow protection system ensures that milk doesn’t flow back into the pump motor, maintaining the hygiene of the breast milk.

How partners and family members can support breastfeeding mothers.

Partners and family members can provide invaluable support to breastfeeding mothers. They should aim to create a calm, relaxed atmosphere where the mother feels comfortable to feed. Encouraging words and physical contact like holding hands or rubbing the mother’s back can help relax her, while she feeds her baby. Partners and family members should be aware of how many diapers the baby has had in a day,

Partners and family members may like to bottle feed the baby using expressed breast milk. Allowing the mother to rest during this time. This experience is also beneficial for the extended family to feel involved and connected in the care of the baby.

Breastfeeding is a beautiful and fulfilling experience that provides numerous benefits for both mother and baby. By staying together after birth, getting the position and attachment right, being patient, feeding on demand, keeping your baby close, avoiding teats and dummies, and embracing exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months, you can set yourself up for a successful breastfeeding journey. Remember, seeking support from healthcare professionals, lactation consultants, and breastfeeding support groups can greatly assist you in overcoming challenges and enjoying the many rewards of breastfeeding.

Sources:

1. Breastfeeding 101: Tips for new moms – Mayo Clinic Health System

2. What to Expect While Breastfeeding | Nutrition | CDC

3. Breastfeeding Tips: What to Know About Breastfeeding a Newborn (whattoexpect.com)

4. Tips for breastfeeding success | The Royal Women’s Hospital (thewomens.org.au)

5. Australia’s children, Breastfeeding and nutrition – Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (aihw.gov.au)