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Breast feeding help!(19 Posts)
I'm going to try breast feeding but none of my friends or family have done just wondered what things I would need?
Information for breastfeeding support groups nearby.
Highly recommend the womanly art of breastfeeding don't be put of by the thickness of it but wish I had read it before baby arrived not when I was having problems feeding a newborn
Tits and a baby!
I just started out with that because I didn't want the extra stuff as a temptation to stop but that's a very personal
I had muslins, perfect for spitting up and also covering your boob while you're changing sides or getting baby latched on; lansinoh (lanolin cream which helps protect your nipples and doesn't need to be washed off before feeding); breast pads which sit in your bra and mop up leakage; erm, I think that's it.
Some people buy feeding pillows but I never did, you can buy feeding aprons/covers but I just used scarves or muslins, I did have bad pains before a diagnosis of tongue tie so I used lansinoh heat therapy pads (promise I'm not on commission). Some people buy breast pumps, bottles and formula, just in case, there's loads you can buy.
Good luck, I really hope it works out for you. It can be very hard at the beginning but I believe it's worth it once you crack it, it's so simple and such a soothing thing for baby, for many months.
A basic understanding of how milk production works really helps, so perhaps get a book or read the information on Kellymom.com
I think I would have lost confidence & given up on night 2 if I hadn't already known that baby will feed constantly to bring your milk in - it isn't that he's not satisfied!
And lots of lanisoh nipple cream - it's not the cheapest but it's a lot cheaper than formula!
It takes a bit of time / practice but once you & baby get it it's a lot easier than making bottles at 2am.
Read about the reasons why ( if you haven't already) this will help motivate if and when things get tough. Be prepared that it may hurt - quite a bit - for quite a number of weeks ( for me weeks 2- 7 were particularly tough no real idea why). Buy some lanolin cream. Be prepared to feed very frequently - eg. Every evening, my baby "cluster fed" in the first weeks -you cannot really do much multitasking in these circumstances. I listened to radioand audio books and quickly learned to breastfeed lying down - relaxing! Consider going to la leche league and any local council support groups.
I'd agree with PP that it will be really helpful to have a good understanding of how breastfeeding really works; the benefits for baby; common problems etc.
You could join a Facebook group - La Leche League have great supportive groups with lots of information, or the Analytical Armadillo is a brilliant blog (she has a FB page too).
Go for It! It's a hugely positive thing to do for your baby.
Right, well hopefully you'll take to it easily but the main thing you need is support and knowledge.
It can be tricky at first. We struggled for several weeks before it clicked, and in that time it was very sore. Now he's nine months and we are so glad it worked out - it's easy, portable, convenient etc.
A few 'things'are useful too. A good breastfeeding pillow is fab. Lanolin for nipples. Breast pad things for leaks. Decent bras - hotmilk do great ones.
The kellymom website is fantastic - really good evidence based info that's non judgemental.
What id do is:
Talk to your midwife and tell her what you told us - you want to bf but no one around you has. Ask them what support is available- there may be some in your hospital or perhaps your local la leche league?
When the baby is born, get someone to show you how to latch. Make sure you're happy doing it. Then, just put them in the breast every time they wake, cry or fuss. They can only take tiny amounts at first so the first few weeks are little and often. After that sometimes they cluster feed - just feed for hours, often In the evening. For that, just park yourself on the sofa and watch tv or read. Get your partner to keep you topped up with snacks.
If you experience pain, problems etc don't panic! It's natural to bf but that doesn't mean everyone finds it effortless- get help early if you need it.
Oh yes learn to feed lying on your side!!
And many areas have breastfeeding cafes.
You say no one around you had breastfed. Does that mean you think you'll be under pressure to bottle feed? If so it might be worth having some calm polite comebacks for comments.
Aw thanks so much for all your replies will get cream a book pads muslins etc I have read it can be hard going but I will definitely motivate myself for the benefits for me and baby!
Boobs, a baby, and some knowledge about cluster feeding.
I had problems BF-ing first time around and the one thing I really wish I'd known was that it's really important to put your baby to the breast VERY often in the first few days. Sorry if it sounds totally obvious but I was clueless and it contributed to feeding problems for my twins. Ended up losing weight and dehydrated - had to go back into hospital to get sorted, felt like worst mum ever. The midwife who sent us back to hospital was so helpful in terms of getting me sorted with a good position to sit and BF, getting the twins latched on, telling me that no, I didn't HAVE to tandem feed, just feed one at a time. I just wish I'd had some advice and support from her a couple of days before when I really needed it. The staff at the hospital were too busy to help with that stuff despite me asking and saying I didn't think my milk had come in, their breastfeeding counsellor was on leave when I delivered / recovered, etc etc... On top of all that, I was scared that giving ANY formula would hinder BF-ing.
Next time around (twins again) the hospital staff were amazing in terms of getting me to do a feed almost the second they were born, helped me by bringing babies to me to be fed instead of me having to lift them up myself post-C Section, and perhaps most improtantly, I knew what to do and that I could do it - and it was so much more enjoyable and less stressful. The first night, I also insisted on giving them a little bottle of formula milk too - explained my previous experience and said I wasn't going to risk babies getting dehydrated if they weren't getting enough from me. MW very understanding and didn't try to dissuade me, though she did say it probably wasn't necessary. With hindsight, she was almost certainly right that I didn't need to give any formula but it gave me the confidence I needed.
It's worth asking your local Children's Centre / NCT group if they run any breastfeeding workshops. The more you see women BF-ing their babies or just being able to talk to them about it, the more confident and clued up you'll feel when it's your turn to do it.
Basically, it's up to you how you feed your child - don't be put off by the fact that your friends and family haven't done it. Even if you do it for a fairly short time, there are still big health benefits for your baby (and for you!) but also, don't ever let anyone make you feel guilty if you want to give formula sometimes.
Finally, BF-ing is soooo quick and convenient compared to the faff of making up bottles of formula, having to sterilise the bottles, etc etc. And it's free!
Find out details of any breastfeeding support groups local to you. Health visitors should have details of local support groups, or La Leche League may have groups near you.
When baby is born, get a midwife or breastfeeding support worker to help you figure out how to position baby for a good latch, and how to tell whether baby's actually getting milk or just lying there with the breast in its mouth.
If you find you are struggling, or worrying that things aren't going well, be prepared to be assertive and ask for help early.
Read up on breastfeeding before baby arrives so you have an idea of what normal is - e.g. a new born baby will breastfeed a lot initially. It doesn't mean you're not producing enough milk - it's normal, it's what the baby does to stimulate supply, to help bring the milk in, and to put their order in for the next day. Cluster feeding, where a baby will want to feed for hours at a time, is also common, and again, doesn't mean anything is wrong with supply.
In terms of actual stuff, the only thing I really needed was breastpads, a breastfeeding bra and clothes that allowed easy access to my breasts. I found a breastfeeding pillow useful, but many people manage fine without one.
Some very useful advice here! Don't forget to be kind to yourself in the midst of it - eat and drink regularly, there are supplements you can take to help milk supply. Persevere and, if you end up with a section, remember it may take a day or two longer for your milk to come in - but believe me it will!! Take all the advice & support you can get- good luck!
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