Are you looking for the breastfeeding tips for new moms? If you are like me when I was looking for those essential and straightforward ones, then you are in the perfect place!
I know that this is a big decision for you and you want to do your best. For this same reason I applaud you and I want to thank you for reading my post.
Let’s get to it!
1. AVOID HIGH EXPECTATIONS
Have you thought that once baby arrives you will slowly get her onto your breast and she would latch straight away? That milk will flow easily and both you’ll be happy and relaxed enjoying each other’s company?
I’m sorry to disappoint you but. It might not happen as that quickly or easily, it happens though, eventually.
My first day I could feel very little milk and baby wouldn’t attach as easily as I had no idea how to do it. Midwives helped me but each of them had different styles. I felt desperate to feed properly my child and felt like I was doing an awful job!
You might hear some mothers say their milk arrived quickly or even days before they were due. That is rare and I’ve been told that it usually happens for mothers who had a baby previously.
Also, even though breastfeeding is natural it doesn’t come naturally! This is something I won’t get tired to say despite having some pro-breastfeeding mothers that is not true.
I believe breastfeeding is something special (once there’re no problems and you got used to it) that both you and baby will cherish. Unfortunately not many mothers can breastfeed because it requires:
- Have had an uncomplicated birthing. Per example C-section ladies need to be bed-ridden and rest lots.
- Good guidance. This one is very important mostly in how to latch properly and unlatch.
- Dedication. You need to want it otherwise you will put yourself or your baby through lots of distress.
- Patience (lots, it feels weird to have a baby sucking constantly somewhere sensitive)
- A source of objective Breastfeeding information. To find answers to your breastfeeding questions without being judged.
- Support from someone who gets it. Someone who knows why you do it and will support you through the process.
2. PROPER LATCH
This one is tricky, or at least it was to me as I struggled with this one!
Many midwives taught me to hold the back of the neck gently while getting near the nipple. That freaked me out so much because there was not much support in their heads and his head was wobbling backwards!
I kept putting my arm underneath and they would not like it as they told me it restricted baby’s head movement. I didn’t care, I did the best I could!
In the end I would lie against the wall with a pillow on my back and let baby rest on my breast and right arm, just beside my nipple. When he would open the mouth wide I would turn him a bit towards it with my arm and he would kind of roll onto it.
I know it sounds kind of funny, but I wanted to try something different. I eventually found out that you can hold their head with an open and a bit loose hand.
Without the tension of cupping as I did, the fingers would allow him to move his head a bit more freely!
There’s plenty of images on google showing you how to hold baby to latch on, so I encourage you to search for them.
And for proper latch, his nose has to be at nipple level (so they can smell your milk). Wait until he opens his head wide, then push him gently towards your nipple.
To unlatch properly put your pinky finger between his mouth and your nipple from the corner of his mouth. If you try to pull without breaking the suction you might hurt your nipple causing trauma to the sensitive skin or ducts.
Also baby won’t like it and they might refuse breastfeed if it shocked/scared them!
3. HANDY “TOOLS”
What do I mean by tools? Per example, I believe it’s important to wear comfortable unwired bras/tops, specially made for breastfeeding.
Why? Well this happened to me while wearing a NON wired bra, yet it was a quite tight one. I wore this small bra that had my breasts almost encapsulated, and one of the sides’ rim was even more tight.
That same evening I felt like if I had a stone inside that side that was very tight, and it felt painful. It was a clogged milk gland and the only way to get rid of it was. Having that side massaged despite the pain and have the baby empty that side of the breast!
I really think you want to avoid situations like that one so here are the “tools” I really appreciated having with me when breastfeeding:
- Elastic bra of my real size (have your breast measured so it’s accurate)
- Hook fastener “Extensions”. Helpful for when you buy a breastfeeding bra too early in pregnancy and you need to accommodate the growing belly.
- Manual breast milk pump. Mine is Medela brand. It’s helpful for when you’ve got mastitis and you need a quick relief!
- Nipple shields. For when your nipples are sore and you want to still breastfeed.
- Organic natural Nipple Cream. I bought Moogoo’s and it’s fabulous! Works fast in relief and safe for baby.
- Bamboo Reusable wipes. Mine are cheekywipes and I use them for everything from cleaning up milk spills, baby’s drools and posits, as a washcloth for baby, for his hands and face.. I never used for changing his nappies but I’ve read they are also great for that! We’ve saved a lot of money with wipes thanks to these.
4. BREAST CARE
OK so this is going to sound weird (maybe) but take care of your girls so they can take care of your baby!
Basically, they need attention and care too!
Before and after breastfeeding give them a good gentle massage, both of them. If you look for breast massage you will find lots of videos on YouTube and pictures illustrating the motion to use on your breasts.
The massage not only helps with milk flow and preventing milk clogging but also helps with blood circulation and tonifies the breast tissue. It’s also a good way to prevent your breasts sagging!
Wash your breasts often with a wet clean cotton wipe, and moisturise the skin of your breasts avoiding the nipple area. For the nipple use either your own breast milk or organic nipple cream safe for baby to ingest.
I’ll be posting soon an article about how to tackle engorgement and how to help dry out your milk (faster) when your baby doesn’t want to breastfeed anymore. So please stay tuned!
IT’ S ALL ABOUT BEING PREPARED
As you see, even though I love breastfeeding it didn’t come easily to me nor some friends I asked to. It’s one of the most sacrificing things I’ve ever done in my life. My son loves it so much that despite being two now he still refuses to let go of the breastfeeding!
I haven’t mentioned this earlier because I wanted to focus in providing you the (best) breastfeeding tips for new moms. The ones that you really need when starting out. I actually have like a sister blog that focuses mainly in breastfeeding that I wrote pretty much during the first year of my son.
The site is dollitamama.com and you’ll find extra advice to rock breastfeeding. Please visit it if you’ve got a moment of curiosity 😉
You might be wondering why I have a separate blog. This is mainly because Mama-Bear PArenting is my coaching website and main one, while dollitamama is a support blog for a more specific niche which is breastfeeding.
Anyway, I hope you found very useful the breastfeeding tips for new moms article. It was written with you in mind so you have a bit more of an idea about breastfeeding. I’m very confident that whatever you choose it’ll be the best for you and your baby and you both will enjoy it!
With light and joy,