BreastfeedingBaby and breast are the perfect feeding team!
For the best nutrition, breastmilk is the best food to feed a baby. It is made specifically to meet the nutritional needs of babies. Human breastmilk changes as the baby grows to offer the best nutrients for the baby. It has over 1000 components - many of these have not been duplicated in infant formula. Baby and Breast- A Perfect Feeding Team
Over the past 25 years, research has continued to show that breastmilk is better than infant formula. In fact, more studies are released each year showing that there are health risks to the baby and the mother when they do not breastfeed.
Infant formula should be seen as a `safety net` for babies who cannot breastfeed and not as an equal replacement.
Many common illnesses, such as colds, flu, skin infections or diarrhea, cannot be passed through breast milk. In fact, if a mother has an illness, her breast milk will contain antibodies to it that will help protect her baby from those same illnesses.
Knowing what to expect and how to deal with setbacks in breastfeeding can help ease the adjustment that you and your newborn will go through as you take on breastfeeding. Nursing comes naturally but it does take a while for the mom and baby to get in sync with one another. How to breastfeed:
Get into a comfortable position. Whatever position is comfortable for you and for the baby is a good position to use.
Position your baby facing your nipple.
Support your breast with your free hand. Keep your fingers off your areola, which the baby needs to grasp.
Gently tickle the baby's lips with your nipple until the mouth is opened wide. Then, move your breast closer.
Don't stuff the nipple into an unwilling mouth. Let the baby take the initiative.
Make sure the baby latches on to the nipple and areola. Sucking on just the nipple will not compress the milk glands. It will also cause soreness and cracking.
If your breast is blocking your baby's nose, lightly depress the breast with your finger. Be careful not to loosen your baby's grasp of the areola.
If the baby has a strong steady rhythmic motion that is visible in the cheek, then most likely the baby is attached and sucking well.
When finished or repositioning the breast, don't yank your breast out of the baby's mouth. This will cause injury to the nipple.
Don't be tempted to skip or skimp on feedings because of pain. The less the baby eats, the worse the pain will be.
Ten Steps to Support Parents` Choice to Breastfeed Their Baby (pdf) Breastfeeding Basics
101 reasons to Breastfeed Your Child (pdf)
How the Baby is Preparing for Breastfeeding
* Start as soon as possible after birth
* Be patient and calm
* Don't try to feed a screaming baby
* Ask for help when you need it
Breastfeeding is a learned skill that becomes easier over time. You are more likely to succeed with long-term breastfeeding by having a plan, becoming familiar with basic techniques, learning how to handle minor physical problems and getting help quickly when you need it.
Before they are born, babies begin learning important skills that will help them breastfeed. Teaching mothers about these skills can increase their confidence in the baby`s ability to nurse at birth.
- By the time a mother is 11 weeks (almost 3 months) pregnant, her baby has learned to swallow. Babies swallow amniotic fluid in the uterus.
- By the time a mother is 24 weeks (6 months) pregnant, her baby has learned to suck. Babies spend a lot of time with their hands close to their mouth before birth. Babies are often seen sucking on their thumb, fingers or hands during an ultrasound exam.
- By the time a mother is 32 weeks (8 months) pregnant, her baby has learned to root for the breast. The baby will turn its head if touched on the cheek and open its mouth if the bottom lip is tickled. By this time the baby can also suck and swallow in a coordinated way.
- By the time a mother is 37 weeks (9 months) pregnant, her baby has learned to coordinate sucking, swallowing and breathing so it can do all three when breastfeeding after birth. Babies practice shallow breathing before birth using amniotic fluid.
- Breastfeed your baby on demand rather than setting a strict schedule, especially in the first few months.
- Taking care of yourself will also help you to establish your milk supply. Eat right and get rest when you are able.
- Avoid bottle-feeding your baby breast milk until breastfeeding and milk supply are well-established, which is usually about 4 to 6 weeks. This helps build your milk supply. Not using bottles also helps prevent your baby from developing nipple confusion, which is a preference for an artificial nipple over the breast.
- Look for signs that your baby is getting enough milk, such as eagerness to eat and feeding sessions that last at least 15 to 25 minutes. By 6 days of age, your baby should need about 6 to 8 diaper changes, settle well after feeding and usually awaken on his or her own to feed every 1 to 3 hours. Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns.
- Help clear blocked milk ducts by using warm compresses and massaging your breasts before and during feedings. Also, breastfeed more frequently and in different positions. Offer your baby the affected breast first at each feeding.
- You can help relieve the pain from sore or cracked nipples with drops of expressed breast milk or lanolin creams.
The color of your breastmilk
The first milk is called `colostrum.' Colostrum is a clear, yellowish fluid. It is rich in protein, nutrients and antibodies, which protect the baby from infection. By starting to nurse the baby right after birth, the baby will benefit from the colostrum and the `mature milk` will come in sooner. Colostrum changes to `mature milk` sometime in the first 1 to 7 days. Comments: Breastfeeding
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`Mature` breastmilk may look blue in color. The milk that comes out first during a feeding (foremilk) is thinner and watery. The milk toward the end of a feeding (hindmilk) looks thicker. It is richer and higher in fat. If a woman pumps her milk, the fat (or `cream`) will separate easily and rise to the top.
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1429 days ago.
hey ladies, glad to see some more posts. Well my daughter is 7mnths, 7 days, and my milk is almost gone. I mean I was getting almost 3ozs per side each pump session, then at 5 months it dropped to 2.5ozs each side. At 6mnths it dropped down to 2ozs. And today I noticed I got 1.8ozs the first session each side, and my second session I got 1oz each side, at 1050 in the morning!!! OMG. So I know I have been terrible with drinking water, and I have been lacking on my pumping sessions (we went out of town for a week, and there really wasn't a place where I could go to pump after each feeding, so I missed a bunch of pump sessions). I know they say nurse as much as possible, I have, drink plenty of fluids, I've started again, increase the pump sessions, I'm already doing after eact feeding and every 3 hrs in the middle of the night, and take either Fenugreek or Mothers milk Tea. I don't want to take the Fenugreek and the tea hasn't worked for me. Besides eating oatmeal, what else can I do. And how long will it take for me to see results? Sorry this is so long! parkersmommy2b
1430 days ago.
Kbrown- my son is 4 days old and has a hard time breast feeding. Sonetimes he won't even try. It's very discouraging but he does take both, he just likes it through a bottle better. khangel2001
1433 days ago.
my son is now 13 weeks old, and he has been just breastfed. I did give him a bottle starting at 2 weeks, a few a week, of breastmilk. They say to start at 4 to 5 weeks before at least, sometimes waiting longer than that they won't take the bottle. I had the reverse though, lol. He would take a bottle just fine until the week before I had to go back to work, then he refused!! And this is my third week back at work, and he is with my mother in law or his dad, and he will take a bottle if he is really hungry, but only enough to get by until i get him home. Somedays he will only drink 1 oz of breastmilk, but then yesterday he drank 4oz in 7 hours, so it was a little better. I breastfeed in public, wearing a nursing cover, and usually everything is fine, he eats, some people stare, but hey, they don't see anything. So breastfeeding in public is still fine, and if he is mostly breastfed he may refuse the bottle eventually like mine did, but start around 4 to 5 weeks to introduce it to him. My baby just prefers the real thing, i hate that he still doesn't drink much when I am gone, that makes me sad, but he isn't losing weight, and now unfortunately wakes up more at night to make up for it. Good luck with whatever you choose to do. You should do what's best for you, and what works best. :) plumeria2462
1439 days ago.
It can be done just wait at least 2 1/2 - 3 months so he doesn't get nipple confusion. He may not take a bottle or drink formula after having breastmilk. My daughter wouldn't drink formula even if I mixed it with breastmilk. So I bought goats milk from a local farmer. I breastfed my daughter at the back of Walmart on a bench many a time, just put a nursing cover on your registry. Once he sees how often they eat he will realize how thats not going to work out so well. Before the 70's ppl ahd no problem with public breastfeeding. Just a lil tip when in public, a few minutes before needing to feed go to the bathroom first get everything unhooked and 'arranged'. Then you won't be struggling trying to do it under a blanket with an anxious fussy baby. Good luck. Kbrown-1
1442 days ago.
Okay I have a question, I am only at my 21 weeks right now but My boyfriend wants to me to breast feed When at home and bottle/formula when out in public. Is it a good idea? and will my son take to both? samlib
1476 days ago.
with my first i cut out dairy and everything u can think of, lol. this one i havent cut anything out. its prob the diet. and i swear the prenantals, i havent taken them and he is btter. as soon as i take them he gets pukey. how long do they stay in system i wonder... plumeria2462
1477 days ago.
Sam sometimes they just have an overactive gag reflex but keeping them upright after a feeding is the best thing you can do. I think the first thing to try to cut from your diet would be anything dairy, I know that sounds drastic but its in almost everything we eat. Then you can just drink vanilla soy milk if that is the case. I know burping in between is important but I couldn't do that with my dd b/c it only seem to make it worse. Good luck. samlib
1477 days ago.
anyone nursing have a spitter/puker??? Kaiden spits up all the time. i bet its my diet, i dont eat as well as i should. with my daughter i never even used a burp cloth, this time i have like 3 with me at all times. i dont think its reflux either. i am trying shorter feedings, prop him up after for atleat 40 min the dr said. and try to start cuttign out foods. he isnt a bottle drinker, has had one but always is so cranky after. so i dont pump. if i get extra milk i freexe it for when he will have cereal. im thinking my diet. but just wanted to see if anyone else has a puker. thanks! mummysue
1479 days ago.
Thank you Plumeria- that's just what I need! It is so hard at the beginning and I had no idea last time that it would be. No one prepared me for it. At least this time I have a better idea how to get the baby to latch on correctly and I know how good it turns out in the end. Thanks for you lovely encouragement. plumeria2462
1479 days ago.
mummy just think of the benefits for you both, the convenience, and saving money. Plus there is way less puking for the baby, better smelling diapers. Well till they start eating anyway. Breastmilk doesn't stain clothes like formula, doesn't make your baby smell like formula-ick. I'm not due for a while so I will be here to cheer you on, I know how hard it is in the beginging but you can do it. mummysue
1479 days ago.
Ok, am writing to try to get to know some other breast feeders before baby 2 arrives. I'm 37 weeks at the moment and set in breast feeding for the second time. Our dd is now 2 yrs old and only stopped nursing 3 months ago (through her own choice - I'd have been happy to keep going!). I'm pretty apprehensive about getting through the first few weeks as I found it so so hard and draining last time. At least this time I know the hard bit passes and it ends up being the most wonderful experience. Will definitely need some support to get me through the first few weeks! TJ
1482 days ago.
just peeking in here.... to the ladies that are having supply issues, fenugreek can help but if you have major issues like me domperidone works wonders! My daughter is three months old and I've been struggling with supply issues almost the entire time. Before starting domperidone I was giving my daughter almost 30 oz a day of formula to supplement. It's been almost a month later and I'm giving her only 8 oz total a day of supplements and not all of it is formula, I'm pumping as well so about half the time it's formula and the other half is pumped milk. Good luck ladies and keep trying, it's stressing I know that, but I love nursing my daughter and I know she is getting the benifits she needs from my milk, hopefully real soon i can ditch the cans of formula. plumeria2462
1483 days ago.
I'm with Dulciana' pump in between feedings b/c your body thinks the baby needs more so it will produce more. I had every problem under the sun when I began breast feeding so if anyone has any more questions I would be happy to answer. Hoping the second time goes more smoothly. Dulcianasmom
1490 days ago.
suzmBLUE! - i would suggest pump at LEAST 4x per da y after each feed. as soon as your milk comes in. cause one your little one is done feeding, you can trick your body into thinking it has to make more milk, therefore what you pump can be froze :) i would do my pumping sessions during the day, never got up after the night feeds to do it. Good luck! And i agree with your comment about not much activity on here anymore! When i had my middle child in 2009, there was soooo much talk on here, now it seems like posts here & there but alot of spammers :( suzmBLUE!
1490 days ago.
Wow - just looked and this board does not seem to be very active ) : When I had my DD, it was active all the time with messages every hour! Hopefullysomeoone answers ( : suzmBLUE!
1490 days ago.
Hi Ladies -- the meessage box is messed up for me ) : So I will try my best to type this... Trying to remember how to start off pumping. I am 34.5 weeks, and will go back to work 6 weeks after my baby boy is born - how do I pump during those 6 weeks at home? I I know that my daugther ate a lot, and I was overwhelmed and didn't pump a lot with her and regretted it because I was in a constant battel to pump enough for her, but managed to amke it 9 months ebf before my supply had dropped enough that I had to supplement. Anyway, I want to be sure that I start building up my reserve while I am at home, but not sure if I should just pump a breast after she is doen - to empty or or pump the other while she is feeding. I do remember the few times that I did pump at hoome during those weeks that I was filling bottles like I never did at home. maribelmora77
1493 days ago.
what can i do????? my milk is drying!!!!!! mummysue
1503 days ago.
Trinam - I'm currently 33 weeks pregnant with a 2 yr old daughter. Against the advice of all my friends and my mum (who's a doctor!!) I continued to nurse my little girl. I was warned that my milk may dry up around 12 weeks but it didn't. Lily gradually weaned herself over the last 4 weeks - she just started to ask less and gradually the milk dried up. I felt so much better that she had led the weaning herself and there was no trauma involved for either of us. If she still wanted to nurse I would still be letting her and I know one woman at our local breast feeding group who was nursing her first baby while in labour with her second! Nursing an older child while feeding a baby too id fine as long as the baby gets to nurse and have their fill first. I will definitely be letting this next one wean itself when its ready. And I will ignore everyone else who tells me I'm either wrong or weird! excitedrose
1511 days ago.
Hey ladies! I organised a breastfeeding flash mob in London back in the summer, here is the official video! I hope you enjoy and if so then please share x
1514 days ago.
Hi ladies. I'm new:-) my little one is 2 weeks tomorrow and I have had sharp pains in my breast after feeding. Could it be milk coming in dominique23
1520 days ago.
kirbys- fenugreek should do it, but you can take 3-4pills 3x a day, you can also take brewers yeast you can get it in pill form online or health food store. if that doesnt work for you you can try a lacation blend you can find online or healthfood store or if you have fred myers they sell it as well. also order domperidone off line that will for sure give you an increasewith in a few days, its a prescription med you can order it from Canada online with no script or get it from you doc give yourself some time try to relax, if you do have to supplment your baby, and wont take formula you can look into donated milk, facebook page human milk for human babies find your local area there, also eats for fets online. another option is goats milk, i started mine at 6 months once in awhile, if i had to leave her and couldnt pump out enough for the whole time i was gone . its closer to breastmilk in compensation and taste and easy on the tummy. beegee
1522 days ago.
kirbys- My LC told me about Mother's Milk Tea, you can get it at any health food store, or a GNC. You drink the tea a few times a day, and you should see results in a few days. I'd recommend that, and have the baby nurse and/or pump as much as possible. Best of luck. suzq
1524 days ago.
1st post! Im 22wks pregnant and still breastfeeding my 3 1/2 yr old. Have been feeding for 6 years non stop!. Fed my now 6 yr old got pregnant kept feeding her till she 4+.. Advice if your milk is decreasing, try to keep your baby at ur chest as much as you can (only seperate if u really have to). Also keep yourself full and well hydrated. The more she tries the more milk will be made. Dulcianasmom
1524 days ago.
kirbys2nd - Did you start your period? I noticed with my middle child that once my period came back that my supply really dwindled. I tried Blessed Thistle and Fenugreek but it didn't help that much. Then when she was about 10months old I got a nasty stomach virus and that just about wiped it comepltely out :( It sucked :( Good luck and just keep hydrated and try to pump often! kirbys2nd
1525 days ago.
My son is 61/2 months old and has been exclusively breastfed. Well about a week ago my milk dropped dramtically. Also at his 4 month check up he was 13lbs 6ozs and at his 6 month check up he was exactly the same. So I have been giving him a bottle after every feeding of his frozen milk, My milk is dwindling that I had stocked up so today while I was out and about I tried to give him formula for the first time and he refused it. Ok so question one. I want to try and get my milk up. I do not want to give him formula at all. What can I try. I started taking fenugreek yesterday and will be nursing as frequestly as possible and pumping. So has anyone had this problem with any luck? Has anyone had a problem giving there baby formula? If I have to give him formula what if he won't take it?!?!?! Anything will help and be greatly appreciated!