Being able to breastfeed your baby is a great gift. But first-time mothers (or mothers who chose to breastfeed for the first time) might be confused about this practice. Unfortunately, a lack of knowledge and guidance about breastfeeding can cause many new mothers to give up early on.
Lactation consultants, nurses, or breastfeeding support in New Jersey might be able to help you out. But it’s also a good idea to look up some tips on your own.
Wondering how to breastfeed properly and whether you’re doing it right? The following tips will help you out.
Skin-to-skin is an important practice. But unfortunately, it’s not a universal one. In the first few days after birth, you should lay your baby on your chest and make sure your tummies are touching. The baby will cue into breastfeeding more easily when they’re undressed.
Feed On Demand In The Beginning
A newborn’s stomach is around the size of a cherry. While it will fill quickly, breast milk also digests more quickly than formula. This means that a breastfed baby is likely to wake up for feeding quite frequently.
It’s best to just latch the baby whenever they express an interest. You’ll be able to tell by the way they stick out their tongue, chew on their swaddling blanket, or just seem to root in the direction of your chest.
The more a woman breastfeeds, the more milk her body will (ideally) produce. If you’re looking to exclusively breastfeed, it’s best not to depend on formula except in dire emergencies.
Make Sure Of The Latch
Nipple tenderness is common right after birth. However, you have to make sure that the baby’s feeding isn’t causing more damage. Breastfeeding shouldn’t be painful or uncomfortable for either you or the baby.
Make sure that the baby isn’t just sucking on the nipple. He or she should have almost all of the areola in his or her mouth. A good latch isn’t just comfortable but also better for extracting milk for the baby. That’s why you should learn the right latching position.
Keep Yourself Comfortable
It’s best to stay calm when you’re breastfeeding as the baby can sense your agitation and get some influence from it. For a successful breastfeeding session, ensure that you have some back support and something to ease your arm as well.
Pregnancy pillows might be able to double as nursing pillows in a pinch. You can also choose a nursing pillow online. So, check out some of their videos to see which one is best to ease the strain on your arm.
If you’re still waiting for your order, use a regular pillow. That way, you don’t have to lift the whole weight of your baby while feeding them.
Keep Baby Awake
Newborns are also prone to sleeping quite a lot. At times, doctors might even recommend that you wake the baby up yourself for a feed if their nap runs too long.
The baby might also doze off easily after just a few sucks. That’s not good for either your milk supply or the baby itself as the breast wouldn’t get the signal to produce more. If there isn’t enough milk, the baby will become fussy and start losing both sleep and weight.
That’s why you should encourage the baby to stay awake for a proper feed each time. You can do it by gently rubbing their head, giving a firm back massage, or raising their arm.
Breastfeeding your baby is highly recommended by pediatricians and other doctors all over the world. By gaining more knowledge about the subject, you should be able to stay confident in your breastfeeding journey. Start working on the tips above right away and send them out to your support system as well!