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thinking of breast-feeding: what do I need to know, what can I read?

(67 Posts)
katatonic Sun 08-Dec-13 12:00:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

looseleaf Sun 08-Dec-13 12:15:55

i don't know about Gina Ford as following my instinct felt right for me but hopefully someone else will know.
But a resource I found invaluable for breastfeeding was Kellymom (should be easy to find on google) . I thought I'd breastfeed to 6 months or so and certainly needed support in the early weeks as things like an incorrect latch can be agony! But ended up finding it easy with both once everything settled and this website helped me throughout

StealthPolarBear Sun 08-Dec-13 12:19:31

Kate evans and bestfeeding are 2 if the best imo

MidnightRose Sun 08-Dec-13 12:25:11

I also found kelly mom website invaluable. Ive been breastfeeding for 10 months now and looking back my advice for someone having a baby would be not to place too many expectations on your baby in regards to sleeping and frequency of feeds which certain books can lead to. My dd still needs to feed a few times over night and is no where near sleeping through, which is normal.

callamia Sun 08-Dec-13 12:25:15

Good for you. Confidence comes with practice, and seeing that your baby is doing well (for me anyway).

I've learned loads from this forum, and lots from going to breastfeeding cafe drop-ins. The La Leche League's Womanly Art of Breastfeeding was an interesting read. I bought mine second hand for a few quid, but breastfeeding cafes seem to loan out books too. I'm sure they wouldn't object to loaning you something in advance of birth (when you've actually got some time to read!)

One thing I've learned is that there are few ready answers. Some babies take long feeds, others short; some mix feed with no problems, others get fussy about bottles; it's helpful to get other perspectives, but you'll soon get to know your own baby. It gets easier!

RegainingUnconsciousness Sun 08-Dec-13 12:31:27

I second the kellymom site.

I also found a local breast feeding group (run by our children's centre) absolutely fantastic. To meet as a group made it feel normal, gain confidence in feeding in public, as well as meeting people.

I fed for 2 years in the end (despite working f/t from 5.5 months). Persistence, perseverance and good luck to you!

RegainingUnconsciousness Sun 08-Dec-13 12:33:27

Oh, regarding sleeping and feeding to sleep. I always fed to sleep, it was the easiest option for all of us. DS grew out of it, and slept through reliably after he was a year.

katatonic Sun 08-Dec-13 12:43:39

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

newtonupontheheath Sun 08-Dec-13 12:48:46

The food of love is a good read. It's what I read when you min the night with both mine when they were newborn. That might be the Kate Evans one referred to above, actually...

katatonic Sun 08-Dec-13 13:07:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DavidHarewoodsFloozy Sun 08-Dec-13 13:12:17

Yy to kellymom, invaluable. Also, about cluster feeding, this is the point when the well meaning will tell you you're not making enough milk hmm.Ignore,ignore,ignore. And good luck!.

Lovelybitofsquirrel Sun 08-Dec-13 13:16:49

Have you asked your midwife what support is offered in your area? From what I understand it varies widely, and having support in the early days is so important. Try to find out if the Breastfeeding Network or La Leche League operate in your area. Both have excellent websites.
It is likely that your NHS trust offers antenatal bf workshops, so I'd recommend attending one of those.
Lastly there is a wealth of knowledge and support on mn, have you joined an antenatal club on here? Once you all progress to postnatal it is invaluable to have people at the same stage as you to talk to.
Congratulations on your pregnancy and good luck with bf!!

TodayIsAGoodDay Sun 08-Dec-13 13:25:10

Some great advice here. Another good book:

I would second the advice of the previous poster, about cluster feeding. Frequent feeding is does not mean you don't have enough milk. The most important thing to remember is the more you feed the more they make.
Don't get too stressed about getting into a routine -it can drive you bonkers! It will come, with time.

TodayIsAGoodDay Sun 08-Dec-13 13:25:26

FrumiousBandersnatch Sun 08-Dec-13 14:24:39

One more thing to add - you might like to read up on establishing your supply on LLL and Kellymom. It's important to feed on demand in the early days rather than trying to put your baby immediately on a schedule. Oncehe your supply is established then you can develop a feeding schedule if you want.

StealthPolarBear Sun 08-Dec-13 17:04:34

yes food of love, that's it smile Someone was on here promoting it when it was firt published and I told her off as I thought it was stealth advertising. If I could go back now I'd tell myself to shut up - even if it was free advertising the book's so good she deserves it

trilbydoll Sun 08-Dec-13 17:26:26

I found it difficult to match the books to the reality, I would say find your local bfeeding clinic and go asap after baby arrives.

And cluster feeding is worse and way more time consuming than I imagined, just get lots of flapjack etc. It seems like forever at the time but now I can barely remember it.

Jiltedjohnsjulie Sun 08-Dec-13 18:24:11

Not read the whole thread but have a read of this.

The reason I don't like Gina Ford is that her books aren't evidence based, they are just her opinion and she's never had a child herself. Plus I know lots of Mums who have tried her fountained and ended up feeling like a failure.

If you want some good information and the confidence to find a routine that works for you and your baby I recommend babycalming.

Puttting the helpline numbers in your phone is usually a good idea and go along to your local bfing support groups, you can go now, there's no need to wait for Lo to arrive smile

Jiltedjohnsjulie Sun 08-Dec-13 18:28:05

Routines not fountained. blush

fuckwittery Sun 08-Dec-13 18:35:35

I quite liked gina ford as an extremely rough guide to when my baby should sleep if I was aiming for a 7-7 night but I ignored everything else!
In particular she advocates a lot of expressing which a lot of mums would find hard to keep up and I think her routines would work better with bottle feeding where you know exactly how much milk they've taken.
I speak as a mother who co-slept, bf on demand (til 18m) first time round; second time round breastfed but to a rough gina routine; and third time round have ended up bottle feeding to no routine at all so far (6 weeks in).

The womanly art of breastfeeding is v good.

EeyoreIsh Sun 08-Dec-13 18:37:46

I've just been to an nct breastfeeding antenatal class, it was great, I'd really recommend it. I think the nhs do them in our area too. I learnt a lot.

jimijack Sun 08-Dec-13 18:41:28

Everything mentioned I agree with.
Also our very own ticktok here on mm is a wonderful helpful expert and will give you one to one advice and information.

Kellymom is all research based so factual and current, well worth a look.

My advice is to not put too much pressure and to many expectations on yourself. See how you feel when the time comes.
Read & educate yourself, but keep in mind that bf is a practical skill, learned "on the job" as it were.

Good luck, when you get going it's lovely.

KippyVonKipperson Sun 08-Dec-13 18:57:48

I really don't think gina ford routines compliment breastfeeding at all, I think you'd end up putting yourself under a lot of stress and worrying about your baby not following the routine by trying to follow it. If you bottle feed you may have more success with gf.

I once read that there are 3 factors that can determine if a woman will successfully breastfeed, and I think largely they are true:
1) the women is convinced of the health advantages of breast milk, and understands its advantages
2) the women isn't afraid to ask for help and support when needed or if she or the baby runs into any issues, and is able to stand her ground or seek out professional to help
3) the women comes from a culture or circle of friends where breastfeeding is accepted or the norm

Obviously not saying if you don't fit those 3 criteria you won't succeed, I'm sure there are many women who are the first in their social circle to bf for example, but it may be worth considering each of them before the baby is born. I have been breastfeeding my DS for 11 months now and in the beginning when I was finding things a bit tricky I really wish I'd known more about the benefits of breastfeeding as I think it would have helped enormously to keep me persevering. It's only since then I've read articles about the benefits of bfing that I'm really glad I kept at it, as I'm sure I could easily have stopped at a few points in those early weeks.

Best of luck, don't be afraid to revisit these boards for tips or advice when the baby arrives, as always you worry about one thing and its usually another problem that crops up anyway!

PurplePidjin Sun 08-Dec-13 19:04:04

Lansinoh!! Use it as much as possible, as often as possible.

Listen to your instincts - you will get to know your own baby, writers are writing about their own babies. You wouldn't expect a book to tell you how to be friends with someone and get it spot on, why is a baby - a whole new person - any different.

Breastfeeding is nature's way of telling you to sit the fuck down and rest while your body heals from the birth. Do this. Essential items: tablet pc or phone with internet; a travel mug full of tea/coffee/whatever; lots of easy to prepare food like stew frozen into portions, cereal etc; the remote control and plenty of box sets; lots of pillows to support your back and arms. Train your p/h to put the biscuits on the side you're not feeding from - mine nearly acquired a new arsehole in the first few days blush

Plus what everyone else said!

FrontLoader Sun 08-Dec-13 19:05:30

Just to add to all the useful advice posted already- I found Dr Jack Newman's book and website really practically helpful and inspiring.

The website is

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