The Best Breastfeeding Guidance for a New Mom
Feeding your baby is an important part of being a mother, and when they’re newborns, you have a choice between breastfeeding or giving them formula. While both are good options, most people agree that breast milk is best, and if you’ve decided to breastfeed, you should know that there’s a little more to it than the obvious.
Even if you feel comfortable with your decision, it’s perfectly normal to be a little nervous because there’s a lot to know about it. This is why learning everything you can and receiving breastfeeding guidance from the experts is so important.
The Right Guidance and Tips Matter
The more you learn about breastfeeding, the less nervous you’ll feel once the baby’s born and you’re ready to nurse. For a new mom, these tips can make a huge difference in your success as a nursing mother. Keep in mind that breastfeeding is natural and easy to learn. In other words, you got this! In the meantime, here are some tips that can increase your self-confidence quickly.
1. Consider Taking a Class on Breastfeeding
When you first start researching how to successfully breastfeed, you’ll run across a lot of terminology that is new to you, but don’t be alarmed. It really isn’t that difficult overall, but a good breastfeeding class can be a huge help. These classes are usually short and won’t take up a lot of your time, but you’ll learn a lot that you didn’t know up to this point and those details can help you more than you think.
Included in most classes are how breastfeeding works biologically, how to get started, tips to help you produce lots of high-quality milk, and what to do if you run into any problems. You should also check with your insurance company to determine if they’ll pay for the classes, because many of them do. The classes are usually not that expensive, but it’s still nice when insurance pays for them.
2. Tentatively Plan When You’ll Go Back to Work
If you’re a working mom, it’s a good idea to have a tentative date that you’ll be back at work because that date will affect how you breastfeed your baby from Day One. Remember that you can’t introduce the bottle too soon because it’s easier for the baby to get milk from a bottle than it is from the breast. If you’re going to use both breast milk and formula once you go back to work, they need to be used to the bottle by the third or fourth week of life.
If you don’t intend to breastfeed once you go back to work, you’ll have to give yourself enough time to wean the baby before that date. Regardless of your plans, it’s a good idea to have a lactation consultant who you can call to get the answers you need at any time.
3. Let Everyone Know That You’re Committed to Breastfeeding
Your doctors, nurses, family members, and even the staff at the hospital need to know that you’re committed to breastfeeding your infant, especially if you wish to nurse and give them no formula for a certain period of time. The hospital staff, in particular, often suggest giving the baby formula if there are any problems whatsoever in the beginning, so you’ll need to stand strong with your decision and let them know that isn’t an option.
In short, the more people realize how serious you are about only providing breast milk to your baby, the less you’ll have to worry about other people not supporting you. If you have any issues in the first few days, the hospital’s lactation specialist is there to help.
4. Be Realistic About Breastfeeding in the Beginning
The first few days of breastfeeding your baby may not go as you’d planned, but this doesn’t mean that you should give up and forego your goals. Make sure that you anticipate minor problems and take advantage of the lactation specialist, nurses, or doctors when they arise. If you’re concerned about whether you should wake a sleeping baby to give them something to eat, consult with your medical staff because each baby is different.
Be prepared for changes in appetite and other things that make your baby unique. Once the two of you bond and get to know one another, you can sync your schedules so that breastfeeding becomes a beautiful experience for both of you. Never hesitate to contact the experts when there are any problems whatsoever because they are there to help.
5. Recognize When Problems Are Serious Enough to Call the Doctor
Even with help from lactation pros and nursing staff, you need to recognize when the problems you’re having need a doctor’s attention. These things include pain in your nipples, cracking or bleeding in your nipples, a baby that seems fussy all the time, a baby that has fewer than six wet diapers and three yellow stools per day, or any concerns about how much milk you’re making.
In reality, you should feel comfortable calling your doctor about any concerns you have, but the issues mentioned above are of special concern when you’re breastfeeding. Nursing your baby should not be a worrisome experience. Instead, it should be relaxing and fulfilling, but it can only be this way if you pay attention and contact your doctor if you have any concerns about any part of this experience, especially when there are problems or something that concerns you.