When I started nursing my first years ago, I got some winner advice from family and friends that made my breastfeeding experience easy, fun, and full of oxytocin vibes. I was shocked to find how many mamas around me struggle and give up before the game even gets going! There is so much help out there and so much that we are not told! So I put together my top 5 tips that allowed me to nurse 3 kids for 2 years each while enjoying every moment. Hope this will save you many tears and frustrations, keep you from giving up, and allow you to reach your breastfeeding goals!
1. Call a nurse or lactation consultant every time you nurse in the hospital-
Did you know your hospital has many nurses and lactation consultants walking around? New moms just try to figure it out, latching their babies alone and have no idea if they are doing it right. This can lead to shallow latches, much pain and frustration and a feeling of hopelessness. Every time you need to feed the baby, CALL THEM! They are there for you! Don’t just try to wing it- you will have plenty of opportunities to be nursing alone at home. While you’re in a hospital or birthing center, call someone each time to make sure you have a good latch, to show you different positions and ask EVERY question you can think of. You will leave the hospital feeling confident, comfortable and empowered. Don’t feel silly calling them. Try it. It’s worth it!
2. Laid back nursing
LADIES! I cannot stress this position enough! I only found out about laid back nursing (biological nurturing) after the birth of my third. GAME CHANGER! Not only does this alleviate gas and fussiness in the baby, help with latch, back pain, let down, the list goes on! This is gold! Make sure to check out this article: https://www.lllusa.org/lie-back-and-relax-a-look-at-laid-back-breastfeeding/
3. You have enough milk!
One of the biggest concerns moms have is that they don’t have enough milk. But 95% of women actually produce enough milk! Breast size is no indication. Moms get stressed out about their supply, and the stress produces cortisol which can reduce milk supply and your fears can come true. Have confidence that you have enough, that you can provide for your baby. Make sure to continue nourishing your body so that you will have energy to feed your baby. If you are concerned, you can try weighted feedings (where you weigh your baby before and after feeding to allay your fears and see that he has gained some ounces) or speak to your healthcare provider or lactation consultant. Don’t assume the worse unless you have a very compelling reason to believe this. Side lying position- ladies, this position changed my life! When I had my first, I would get up in the middle of the night, turn on the light, change her diaper, sit in the rocking chair for 30-45 minutes, sooth her back to sleep and try to sleep until repeating the process a few hours later. Help! I was headed towards fatigue and burnout. Finally a friend of mine noticed. “You do what?! NO WAY! Do not get up and go through that whole routine unless the baby has pooped. And she proceeded to show me the position that allowed me to doze comfortably while nursing before putting baby back in her bassinet. I began to feel more human immediately. I also found this so gentle on my back and prefer the side lying position for most feedings to this day. Note: Please discuss this position with your health care provider and ensure proper safety measures to avoid rolling on your baby. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uXbQl-MBAuo
4. Expect less!
Many moms experience burnout due to the overwhelming amount of tasks to be done at home and how long it takes to nurse. Making a mindset shift that “this is what I’m meant to be doing right now” makes all the difference. Give yourself permission to nurture, to be in the moment, and to not get all too much else done. This is what nature has intended for you and your little one, you’re not doing “nothing”, you’re doing exactly what you should be. Here are some great tips for keeping the pressure off of you: -prep in batches- when you cook, double or triple the recipe and freeze. -outsource as much as possible- take up friends offers to grab the groceries, ask your partner to do the laundry, eat simpler meals, and plan less events on your calendar. -Be ok with things not being exactly what you want, it’s temporary!
5. Find people like you
Breastfeeding is very lonely and many women give up quickly due to lack of info and support. We created a community of moms going through the same journey who help and encourage each other constantly. Join us on Instagram here, never be alone again!
WE PUT TOGETHER AN EXTRA EXCLUSIVE SET OF TIPS JUST FOR YOU.
Breastfeed right after birth Mamas, the number one key to successful breastfeeding is to begin within the first hour of birth, or as soon as possible! This is crucial, says Susan D. Crowe, MD, an ob-gyn and clinical associate professor at Stanford University School of Medicine. In fact, allowing moms and babies to have skin-to-skin contact right after delivery encourages newborns to start breastfeeding in the first 30 to 60 minutes. In the beginning, your body produces only a small amount of colostrum (the yellowish breast milk produced before normal lactation begins), which is all a newborn initially needs. But eventually you produce more breast milk as your baby breastfeeds. Even if your baby needs immediate medical attention or requires a stay in the NICU, you can still express colostrum with your hands to stimulate those breastfeeding signals.
Breastfeeding doesn’t have to hurt If your baby has a good latch, nursing really doesn't need to be painful. Learning how to position your newborn and ensure a good latch can take time, but here’s your goal: “You want to make sure baby is latched tightly to the breast so her cheeks and chin appear seamlessly attached to you. You shouldn’t be able to see her lips. And it should feel comfortable,” says Tamara Hawkins, an IBCLC-certified lactation consultant. If you feel pain, chances are your baby’s latch is a little off.
Let others help with housework For the first six weeks, make sure to decrease the amount of housework you as a mom do. Your baby's health is your number one priorety, and your full focus must be upon your baby. You are the only one that can nurse your baby, so the rest of your family must be aware that they must help more than usual around the house. And when you’re not actively breastfeeding, focus on self-care, including eating well and getting rest. “If you invest the time initially, it’ll pay off in huge dividends later,” Crowe says.
One of the most important factors to enhancing your breastfeeding experience is ease, comfort, and the realization that you can still look presentable. That is why we created a line of nursing friendly dresses with super easy accessibility- to show our fellow mamas that you can still look good during nursing; that you do not to compromise style for ease and accessibility.
Thank you so much for investing your time to transform your nursing experience. Click Here to see so much more on our Instagram.
Check out our stylish selection of clothing that lasts from maternity through nursing!