Breastfeeding is not only a process involved in feeding a child, or just the act of a child latching on to his or her mother’s breast. It is a way of life, a bonding mechanism between the mother and the child. As a new mom, your aim and purpose should not be focused on how to get over with breastfeeding but rather on how to breastfeed and do it right. A healthy baby is the joy of motherhood and breastfeeding is the determinant of a healthy baby. You need to know breastfeeding not only benefits your child but you also have a lot to gain from this simple act of nature.
Grantly Dick says and I quote “A newborn baby has only three demands, respectively are warmth in the arms of the mother, food from her breasts, and security in the knowledge of her presence. This is what your child gets from you all in the simple act of breastfeeding him or her. It is a proven natural health plan sustainable for every newborn child. The experience of breastfeeding is a therapeutic one for both the mother and child.
Your child gets natural antibodies from this to serve as his or her immunity until his or her own immune system is fully developed, and also does your risk of breast and ovarian cancer becomes reduced. The benefits of breast milk to your child is synonymous with life itself. And to let you in another secret; every new mom goes to every length to get back in shape after pregnancy. Well, I am pleased to inform you that breastfeeding your child helps reduce these excess calories gained.
No one was born with the skills of breastfeeding, we all learned as at when due and this piece would focus on the most important tip of all necessary to kick-start this process in a much easier state “COMFORT”.
Getting comfortable is the first and most important tip of all when breastfeeding your child. It is a way of life and the only way to embrace it is to pick a position and setup that defines comfort for you and the baby. Breastfeeding is a way of life and anything you do that does not resonate comfort implies you are doing it all wrong.
- Learn to hold your baby properly. This description is aimed at giving you comfort. As a new mom, you need to know the three positions you can take when breastfeeding your baby. The first, most important and well-known position is widely known as the cradle hold. This position requires you to hold your baby laterally across your abdomen, placing one hand as support beneath his or her head and the other serving as the chair/cushion beneath his or her bottom. This position requires you as the mother to be in a comfortable sitting position. The second position is known as the football hold. This position requires you to place your baby beside you with him facing up and laterally. Lay him on your arms and guide his head to your breast. You need to be in a comfortable sitting position as well. The last and my very personal best is known as the lying down hold. This positioning requires you to lay your baby next to you in bed; facing you. Make sure his mouth is at the same elevation with your nipple or just slightly lower. Bring his mouth close to your nipple with one hand while the other hand rests on the back of his neck.
- Proper latching. Proper latching is important in order for you to be comfortable as well as your baby. A deep latch is necessary in order for your baby to feed properly. Make sure his mouth covers as much areola as he can, with the nipple pushing as far back as possible in your baby’s mouth. Place your baby’s nose close to your nipple and not his mouth. This will allow him to lift his mouth close to your nipple and latch on deeply. Make sure you place your baby’s stomach at the same level as your stomach in order to get comfortable. This step would allow your baby to latch properly.
- Do not encourage the use of bottle until your baby is comfortable with your nipples, in order not to confuse your baby. Don’t offer water to your breastfeeding newborn; breast milk has everything he or she needs. It is more than sufficient to take care of his or her entire needs.
- Use pillows as support for your baby to get breast high in order to enable sucking. You as the mother also need to take care of your positioning when breastfeeding. A mother with back pain becomes a grumpy mom. Bring your baby close to your breast and not the breast close to the baby. Be prepared to breastfeed for about 8-12 times every day because your baby will be hungry at all times. Every two hours or whenever your baby cries, be ready to breastfeed your baby. Guide your baby to your nipple by rubbing his cheek with your finger till he is able to turn to your breast.
- Don’t dictate how fast your baby should suck or how much milk your baby should take, let him or her determine that.
- For the first few weeks, most newborns have the need to be fed every two to three hours round-the-clock. Be observant and try to note early signs of hunger, such as stirring, restlessness, sucking motions and lip movements.
- Always stay close to your baby at night. It’s best to allow your newborn sleep in your room but not in your bed. Adult beds are unhealthy for infants. A baby can be trapped in the space between the mattress and the bed frame, or the space between the mattress and the wall; which would lead to suffocation. A baby can be accidentally smothered if you roll over and cover the baby’s nose and mouth. You should remember it is for your comfort and that of your baby. You get to sleep comfortably in your bed without having to be cautious of you rolling over him or her.
- Healthy eating. Above all, you need to feed properly in order to lactate enough for your baby. You wouldn’t want a robust baby with the mother looking sickly. Your choice of food will reflect on your baby. Never forget the importance of staying hydrated. If you eat healthily and forget to stay hydrated, it can result in you losing all your milk. If that happens, how do you help your child?
These tips will help facilitate your comfort and that of your baby.