The breastfeeding tips and advice for new moms which we have listed in this article, will prepare you for the ultimate journey of baby breastfeeding – the art of feeding your little bay with milk from your breast, either by directly placing the breast into the baby’s mouth, or by bottling the breast milk after squeezing it, and feeding the baby from it.
In this article, you shall get to know some basic facts about breastfeeding, as well as breastfeeding tips and advice for new moms for effective breastfeeding; They will help you overcome major breastfeeding challenges.
Some Basic Facts You Need to Know About Breastfeeding As a New Mom
– Breastfeeding of your baby starts almost immediately your baby is born, and continues for as long as one year period, or depending on the desire of your baby.
– Your new born baby may require being breastfed every two hours, and for a period of ten to fifteen minutes long, but gets reduced as he/she grows older. Breastfeeding your baby helps reduce the risk of infections, asthma, diabetes and diarrhea that basically affect babies, and in the long run it helps your baby against obesity.
– The nutrient from your bloodstream helps produce the breast milk for your baby as it has a rich content of fat, water, sugar, and most importantly protein, which your baby needs for growth. When you breast feed your baby, the rich deposit of vitamin is supplied to your baby which is needed for your baby’s development.
– The first breast milk you give your baby is called colostrum. Colostrum are mainly pre-milk which most times can be watery or thick and yellowish in color. Due to the fact that it flows slowly, your baby may use the period to learn how to breastfeed the right way. Colostrum may be called the pre-breastfeeding tutorial class for your baby.
– Colostrum help your baby to pass out his/her first stool and prevent jaundice. The mature breast milk you start producing starts in the third or in rare case, the fourth day after delivery and contains enough fat.
– Breastfeeding can be challenging, considering the length of time expected for your baby’s mouth to be on your nipples; For those that subscribe to exclusive breastfeeding, the expected duration to breastfeed your baby can last a year, and must not be less than six months.
20 Breastfeeding Tips for New Moms
1. Wash your Hand Always: Before you start breastfeeding your baby each time, ensure that your hands are washed properly to avoid transferring germs to the baby since you are going to use the same hand to touch your breast and the baby in the breastfeeding process.
2. Always Get in touch for Help (with a lactation expert). When you feel the need for help, always reach out to lactation expert. Does you nipple hurt or wounded? Get in touch with a lactation expert.
If you suspect your baby isn’t getting enough of the breast milk, or you observe he or she is losing weight, then consult your doctor or lactation expert.
3. If you position your baby in any of the styles listed below in this article, put the thumb of your free hand on top of your breast. Use the other free fingers below the breast to gently hold it and guide it to your baby’s mouth.
4. When you are just breastfeeding your baby for the first time, your baby may not identify the breast, or its purpose. You are expected to touch your baby’s lips with the tip of your nipple. Keep doing this until your baby gets the signal, and opens up his mouth for the reception of the nipple.
5. Try the early bird breastfeeding. You are advised to breastfeed your baby immediately he or she is born. The timeframe shouldn’t be more than two hours after delivery. The first breast milk that comes out of your breast is called the colostrum and its few drops are effective in making your baby to easily pass out stool.
6. Ensure that your baby’s feet are in touch with something. Your baby feels relaxed and breastfeed better when their little feet are touching something; it could be a chair, table or even a pillow. Allow your baby to feel relaxed and secured while sucking your breast.
7. By all means, ensure that your baby’s stomach is touching yours. You can do this by placing his or her tummy to yours. Point your nipple to your baby’s mouth. For your baby to suck the breast milk very well, keep him or her in a position that lifts his/her head up, in a way that opens up her mouth towards the breast.
8. Don’t push your baby to the point of resistance by pushing his or her tiny head from the back. This is a No-No to be done by any mom praying for her baby to breastfeed properly. Instead, place your hands gently on his/her neck, and draw him/her gently to your breast. This tends to assure him or her of your loving desire to feed him or her as against the fear of hostility which is responded to, by a chomped down or outright resistance to the breast.
9. You can try the cradle style of breastfeeding. This involves putting your baby’s head in your arm. This attempt will help you support your baby’s back and bottom efficiently. By this, your baby’s face should be facing your breast and silently urging you to bring it closer.
10. Don’t be in a hurry to change your baby’s mouth from one side of your breast to the other breast. This actually must be avoided most especially during the first few hours after delivery. You are advised to allow him or her to remove his or her mouth from the breast at will and switch to the other one. At the early stage of breastfeeding, some babies tend to get so attached to one of the breast, and feed from it than the other one. There is absolutely nothing wrong or scaring about that.
11. You may want to try the football style. This style lets you place your baby under your arm basically along your side. When you try this, his or her head will be resting peacefully in your hand. You can support your baby’s body with your strong arm. Try this if your breast is very large or you just had twins.
12. Sit upright whenever you are breastfeeding. Make sure you bring your baby’s mouth to your breast immediately you realize his or her mouth is open. You can press his or her tiny shoulders gently but firmly so that he or she can be brought favorably to you. At this point, use your other hand to carefully guide his mouth to your breast or support your breast with your hands to ensure that his mouth finds its way to your breast.
There is definitely going to be a hurting sensation which you will feel immediately his mouth finds its way to your breast, but don’t be worried, you can either bear the pain knowing that your baby is feeding well or just remove his or her mouth and redo the process again.
13. The cross-cradle style is an effective style that can be applied if your baby’s delivery came before the due date of delivery. Just hold your baby with the opposite arm of the breast you are currently using. Your baby’s head and bottom can be supported with your palm. At this point, your baby should be laid in a way that he or she is facing you. This helps to provide an additional support for the head.
14. Avoid pacifiers. The urge to limit their cries is always there. This can lead you to getting pacifiers, but kindly avoid it for the first few months, because it helps to control their urge for breast milk and may result to malnutrition of your baby.
15. Try this if you had a C-section. Do you want to rest your shoulders or maybe lower your back? Then, lie down on your side. To aid you while you lie on your side, place a soft pillow in between your knees, and your arms right under your head, then let your baby face you, with his or her mouth facing your nipple.
16. Try this if you are somewhat a short mom. This style helps take the undue pressure off you, most especially if you had an episiotomy recently. Use a breastfeeding stool. A breastfeeding stool gives you the mom an additional lap, thereby giving you the desired comfort needed while breastfeeding your baby.
17. Tickle your baby right under his or her feet if you notice that he or she sleeps off whenever you are breastfeeding him or her. You do not want your baby underfed, do you? Try stroking his chin softly or tapping a wet napkin on his or her skin. This will help him or her to stay awake, and suck your breast as you desire of him or her. [Read: How to Stay Awake While Breastfeeding a Baby]
18. Double your calories intake. You are breastfeeding, and you are no longer pregnant. Your baby eats from you, and expects that you take in about 300kcal per day to be sufficient for both of you. Ensure that you watch your diet, and eat as much as needed.
Do not take this advice as a means to over-eat, and become obese. Ensure to eat healthy diet, because your baby’s health depends on it. Take fruits and veggies and sometimes snacks.
19. Learn to be patient and relaxed while breastfeeding your baby. Breastfeeding is a unique skill that must be learnt and relearn by every mom, including you and your baby. You must know that breast feeding your baby comes freely when you and your baby are relaxed. A relaxed mind produces seamless breast milk that is suckled free-of-stress by your baby.
20. Place your baby in the same room as you. Avoid the urge to place your new born baby in a separate room. This helps prevent sudden infant death, and enables you know when your baby is in need of breast milk. Staying in the same room as your baby increases the desire for breastfeeding, and provides for your baby the needed protection during the day and night from his or her mom.
Breastfeeding Advice for new moms – Other Breastfeeding Tips
Being a new mom can be challenging, as well as interesting. Your focus changes from yourself to that of your new born baby. His welfare becomes the paramount thing.
This section provides pieces of advice from moms who have gone through what you are going through or about to go through. Some of them learnt from their mistakes while some learnt before encountering the stage of their parenting life. We want you to learn from them so that from you, others will learn too.
1. This particular point leaves me wondering why they do what they do. You will learn that babies cry always. Most times they cry for no reason. But you must also know that whenever they cry, there is a 98 percent chance that they are in need of serious attention. First, check if their diaper is dry. It may be that they are wet as a result of poo or pee. That wetness disturbs them, and their only means of communicating to you is to cry.
Secondly, they cry when they are hungry, scared or lonely. Babies love attention, so finally, they cry when they are in dire need of your attention or feel your attention for them is shared with others. At this stage, feed him or her, change the diaper or carry him or her. If all these don’t work, check if your baby has a fever then see a doctor as quickly as possible.
2. Don’t be scared of holding your baby. There is this fear that when you hold your baby, he or she becomes too attached to you and detached to the world. That is not completely true. Hold your baby. Feel the love of your baby, and sometimes place your baby down in his or her crib.
3. If you realize that you are not getting enough sleep as you should due to your baby’s need, then you must know that you are not alone in this. Many moms are. Your baby tends to be awake almost when you feel like closing your eyes for a little nap.
If your baby frequent wake-up to eat seem to affect your sleep, then you should attempt engaging your spouse or a nanny in some of the house chores that needs to be done so that you can grab a little sleep while your baby sleeps. If your baby keeps waking up even when not hungry then you may try to see your doctor to check if your baby is suffering from ear infection or acid reflux.
6 Common Breastfeeding problem and their fix
There are some common problem that naturally arises in regards to mom and their baby’s breastfeeding. These problems could make the already stress of breastfeeding even more burdensome. We know your fears and realize that you are in dire need for a solution and that’s why we have compiled some of the breastfeeding problem you may or are encountering, and a possible solution for you.
1. The cracked Nipple problem: This problem may be scaring and most times very discomforting to you. It arises from a number of reasons which could be as a result of an improper pumping, one dimensional latch to a dry skin. You may likely experience this problem during those early hours when your baby is learning to latch.
Solution: To solve this problem, work on the positioning of your baby. Ensure that your baby is positioned properly in a way that your nipple isn’t rubbing itself on your baby’s hard palate. You may have to get a soothing gel to sooth the pain or a breastfeeding ointment. If the pain persist, you can take acetaminophen half an hour before you breastfeed your baby.
This acetaminophen will help to relieve you of the pain. When you hit the shower, try as much as possible to wash your nipples properly with soap and water. This will help to wash off those bacteria that may hang onto your cracked nipple. You may also wash your nipple before and after every breastfeeding session.
2. The clogged duct problem: Do you feel a hard lump on your breast that leads to serious pain whenever your hands touch on it? If yes, then your breasts are quite full to the extent that the milk has clogged up into ducts. There are also times your nipple is red, and at same time, you feel some feverish condition, then, you definitely have clogged ducts. This problem can also be as a result of your bra or your breast having to squeeze while you sleep.
Solution: The solution to this problem is not far-fetched. You can attempt massaging the affected breast gently, or ask your partner to help you squeeze it in a romantic way. By this, the clog begins to break down.
3. The yeast infection problem: This problem springs from your baby to you. It is a yeast infection that spreads from your baby’s mouth to your breast, and causes your nipples to be red and itching.
Solution: To solve this problem, you need antifungal medicine that can be applied on your nipples. Before you get the drug, kindly consult your doctor for the right medication. The medication will also be administered in your baby’s mouth. The treatment need not be one sided to avoid the other part re-infecting the other. After the medication, ensure that your bra and breastfeeding pads are washed in hot water, soap and vinegar mixture.
4. Low milk problem: Are you experiencing shortage of breast milk? Then, you need to breastfeed constantly, and pump your breast to enhance supply of breast milk. Increase your consumption of calories, and try to drink enough liquid.
5. The inverted nipples problem: This problem is a situation whereby your nipple isn’t protruding but draws in. you will need to consult a lactation specialist. You may have to use your fingers to pull out your nipples before breastfeeding your baby.
6. A bulging breast: This is also known as engorged breasts. Your baby at this point finds it difficult to latch, because your breast is full and firm, or your baby isn’t exhausting your breast milk efficiently. Your body makes more milk than your baby is feeding from. To solve this and get the milk flowing, try the hand expression technique in order to make it easier for your baby to access the milk or latch. Finally, try to breastfeed your baby often.
5 Basic Tools Every breastfeeding Mom Needs
There are some items that actually aid the breastfeeding of your baby, and in this section will list them for you so you can get the useful items, while avoiding the ones that will add to your collections sitting dust-filled in the closet.
1. Breastfeeding pillow: This is an item that you cannot do without as a nursing mom, most especially if you have had a c-section or an extremely large breast. When used, it lifts your baby to your breast level. The pain that may arise from your back, shoulders or neck is eliminated by the use of the pillow.
2. The breastfeeding bra: Few days and weeks after delivery, your breast may feel very full and sometimes so heavy. At this time, you need a supportive breastfeeding bra to provide relieve unto you. The ease at unhooking the bra makes access to your breast by your baby faster. A supportive bra helps to prevent sagging breast that is most times the after-effect of breastfeeding.
3. The breast pump: This allows you to extract milk from your breast and store for a later time to be used to breast feed your baby. This is appropriate for most working class moms who have to keep their babies in a day care center while they work. It helps to manage an abundance of breast milk, increase the flow of breast milk or relieve the pain associated with bulging breast (engorged breast).
4. Breastfeeding clothes: If you are a fan of easy and accessibility of your breast by your baby then you need to get a breastfeeding cloth. It has slits or a zip in front that makes pulling out of the breast easy. If you are a fashionable mom, then there are different styles to fit your every day desire. The clothe ranges from casual to corporate wears.
5. Breast milk storage bag: This is specially made for the storage of breast milk to be used later. You may use a plastic milk storage bottle or a glass food-safe.
What is laid-back breastfeeding?
Laid-back breastfeeding is the breastfeeding style that involves a reclined position to breastfeed your baby. This is a very comfortable style. This is actually the natural breastfeeding approach.
Laid-back breastfeeding style aids in the release of different feeding reflexes of your baby while at the same time encourages a high level of oxytocin hormone which your baby and yourself need. Your baby enjoys a high level of freedom when being breastfed as he or she latches efficiently due to those natural reflexes. You have a low percentage of having a sore nipple when this style of breast feeding is employed.