Guest Post By Regina Dinges
I am Regina, a blogger at MomDiscuss. I love providing many useful tips and guides for all parents or to-be parents on pregnancy stages and baby care.
Pediatricians and most other health experts recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of a child’s life because of its many benefits. Key among these advantages include the fact that breast milk contains a perfect balance of the nutrients that the baby needs and because it is easier to digest than formula. Most new moms prefer to breastfeed, but the challenges that they face tend to make many of them give up after a few weeks or months. But with the six breastfeeding tips for new moms below in mind things should be easier for you.
#1 Ask for Help Immediately
Most ladies believe that breastfeeding is a simple task and their natural instinct is enough to show them how to do it. Whereas this might be right to some extent, in most instances, you will still need help from experts and other mothers to do it well. Doing some online research might help, but you should also ask for help from the nurses at the hospital before you check out. Talking to a lactation consultant is also an excellent idea, but you should make sure that you seek help right away to avoid challenges once you leave the hospital.
#2 Avoid Comparisons
One of the greatest mistakes that most new moms do is comparing themselves to others. It is important to know that people are different and so some mothers tend to have a lot of milk and an easy time breastfeeding while others have a little milk and a hard time. Just because your friend or sister produces a lot of milk and does not have any issues with breastfeeding it does not mean that things will be the same for you. Instead of wasting time comparing you breastfeeding with other moms you should aim at finding ways to produce enough milk for the newborn.
#3 Stock up on the Essentials
There are different items that you will need when breastfeeding and so it is important to make sure that you have them all. They include things like nursing pads and bras, a breast pump, breast milk storage bags, nursing pillow and lanolin cream to take care of nipples. The breast pump and milk storage bags will be very handy if you have to go back to work after the mandatory maternity leave as they will help ensure that you baby always has some milk to drink in your absence. Also, pumping the breasts will relieve the pressure and pain that can develop when they are too full.
#4 Eat Healthy foods and Stay Hydrated
The failure to produce enough milk is very stressful for most new moms, and in some instances, it might force them to start giving the child formula. But there are many things that you can do to increase milk supply. Eating a healthy and balanced (with foods from all groups) diet and staying hydrated is an excellent starting point. Remember that the body needs food and water to produce milk and so you should make sure that you have enough of both. Always having a medium size bottle of water with you is one of the best ways to ensure that you take in enough water.
#5 Go With The Baby’s Pace
Newborns will breastfeed after every couple of hours even at night for the first few weeks, and so it is important to ensure that you make this possible. Even if the child does not cry to let you know that he wants to feed, you should watch out for the common signs of hunger like restlessness and lip movements. Also, it is important to understand that babies tend to have different personalities. Some will prefer long and leisurely nursing while others will prefer to nurse for a few minutes and do it several times a day. And so determining what the newborn prefers will help to ensure that you go with his pace.
#6 Make Sure That the Child Nurses from Both Breasts
When breastfeeding, you should let him nurse from one breast for at least a quarter an hour or until he lets go. You should then burp him and put him on the other breast if he is still hungry. Doing this will ensure that your child gets enough milk and also help to drain both breasts so as to relieve pressure and provide a steady milk supply.
Breast milk is vital for the development of your infant, and so it is important to make sure that he gets enough of it. For new moms, things might be tough in the beginning, but with a little patience and practice, everything will work our well. Following the six tips above will help to make everything easier for both the mother and newborn.