Breastfeeding is the best way to provide nourishment to your baby. It’s recommended that mothers provide the baby with their milk up to the age of one for best growth and development of the infant. Since this is your first time with breastfeeding we’ve got a few tips that’ll help you get around this new found role in life.
#1 It will be painful!
For starters, it’s going to hurt a lot! Your breasts are not used to pumping milk and your baby doesn’t know how to latch onto the nipple and suck the milk out. It’s going to be really difficult for the first two weeks but soon the pain will reduce.
#2 Look for signs
In the beginning, your baby should be fed at regular intervals because you breast aren’t pumping enough milk to satiate the hunger for a long period of time. If your baby licks his/her lips or puts a finger in his/her mouth then chances are the baby hungry. Don’t wait for the baby to cry!
#3 Is your baby satisfied?
How would you know your baby is getting enough milk? The first sign would be weight gain. Every week if your baby gains a little weight then be rest assured that your baby is getting enough milk. Another sign you can look out for is frequent bowel movements.
#4 Increase your milk production
Like we said in #1 your breasts are not used to pumping milk because of this your milk production will be very less in the beginning. The more you breastfeed the more milk you’ll start producing. This will help in satisfying your baby’s hunger quicker.
#5 Milk is the only food
For the first six months, milk is the only food and drink that your baby needs. Breast milk contains antibodies and immune factors that help the baby for a lifetime. Post six months along with milk other food items recommended by your pediatrician can be given.
#6 Look after yourself
If you eat well only then you will be able to lactate well. If your breasts get painful and swollen, place a towel soaked in warm water on the breasts or use a few massage techniques to relieve the tension. This will allow the milk to flow properly. Also, don’t forget to drink water at regular intervals.
#7 What happens if you’re a working mom?
Yes! You can have your cake and eat it too. If you plan to start work in a few months after conceiving you can pump out your breast milk and store it in a bottle. If stored in a refrigerator the breast milk can be used for up to 3 days. Do not directly heat the milk, place the bottle under running hot water.
#8 Moisturize the nipples
There will days the skin around your nipples will crack, dry up, and may even bleed. If you don’t want to apply an ointment you can always use olive oil or even your own breast milk to moisturize the nipples.
#9 Lactation consultant
By the time the baby is out you’ll be super busy nursing. It’s always better to keep a consultant’s number handy so that you have someone to reach out to when in trouble or doubt.
#10 Breastfeed publicly
Last but not the least don’t be ashamed to feed your baby in public. Nothing should stop you from stepping out if you wish to. Hold a blanket or cloth over your breast and feed your baby without any hassles. Believe us when we say it’s no sin!
These tips should help you master the art of breastfeeding. All the best!