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Breastfeeding- Tips/hints and what you think Mums need to know

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#26 dippinsniffer

Posted 27 January 2007 - 07:33 PM

jess42more, in my experience, the pain was there only for the first 30 seconds of every feed then it passed for the remaining feed. I believe that is the 'toe-curling' pain most posts are alluding to. For me, bf stopped hurting at around 6wks. I had NO other problems though and it had nothing to do with attachment. I don't know why some people say that correct attachment = no pain rolleyes.gif

#27 censura carnero

Posted 27 January 2007 - 07:34 PM

Every time your baby cries in the early days offer the breast as they are usually hungry above all else.

Learn to feed laying down so you can sleep at the same time.

Lactation Consultants are amazing.

Cluster feed in the evenings.  I would spend from 5-7 in the evening feeding which meant he got the rich fatty hind milk that helped to make him sleep longer. So I also got more sleep which helped the supply.

If you are trying to get your baby to sleep a breast feed is the quickest and best way.

It hurts some and not others.  My girlfriends were fine and had minimal soreness. I was not so lucky.

Even when you have fed and fed and fed your baby they might still be hungry so feed again, especially when they are going through growth spurts which can occur at any age.

Oh yeah don't introduce a bottle too early as they might not go back to the breast and if you need to comp use expressed breast milk not formula so that your supply doesn't dwindle.

And finally, just when you think you will never get the hang of it, it all starts to fall into place (for most not all) and it is the most exquisite feeling in the world to breast feed your bub.

#28 JennyH

Posted 27 January 2007 - 07:38 PM

What I have said to mums to be

1. It is a learned skill, so use the midwives experience whilst in hospital and the ABA after... even if it seems conflicting sometimes, perhaps it is because some things work for some people.

2. If you have found a routine, attatchment, anything that works, don't let peoples opinions give you doubts so you change a good thing.

3. Although correct attachement doesn't hurt in theory, our protected boobies have spent their lives cosseted in bras etc, getting them out (sometimes hourly) and having a hungry baby sucking does hurt initially... sometimes very badly, but they do adjust.

4. Take people up on offers to help, a newborn is tiring, regardless of how it is fed. If stuck for things to ask them to do, think of things like folding washing, cooking a meal (or even biscuits etc that you can offer guests), taking baby for a walk so you can rest etc.

5. Every time you offer a bottle of formula, your supply will drop unless you express an entire feed (which is much more tiring to do than breastfeeding). So well intentioned folk who offer you to rest and they will give baby a bottle if they wake are dooming your bf to failure. Suggest they could be more help changing baby after feed and taking it out for a walk.

6. Most importantly your baby will not starve if your milk doesn't come in by day 2 or 3 or even day 4. personally I think this is where many breastfeeding relationships are doomed to failure. Baby is hungry, granted, but putting them to breast more often helps the milk come in. Feeding them formula so they sleep for 6hrs puts your milk "coming in" back another day. Doesn't take long to figure that when baby wakes after that long sleep that finding still no milk in those boobie things will make baby frustrated and mummy exasperated. Another bottle given, another baby no longer breastfed.


#29 Nicky*Nacky*Nocky*Nu

Posted 27 January 2007 - 07:39 PM

Try hardest to breastfeed, get help from a lactation consultant when your feel like you just can't manage.  

If it's just not working for you both - don't beat yourself up - you gave it your best shot and both of you need to be happy.

#30 Rubylicious

Posted 27 January 2007 - 07:40 PM

Forgot to add my tip for new mums... dont wait until your nipples are already dry and cracked to start using nipple cream after each feed. Do it from word go!

Also try expressing a bit of milk onto the finger and rubbing it onto nipple, and let the nipples air dry. Works wonders for irritations in the early days of feeding.

#31 LynnyP

Posted 27 January 2007 - 07:44 PM

I can't think of anything much to add that hasn't already been really well covered.  I do want to say again that feeding frequently and for a long time does not mean you have a low supply.  Siobhan fed every two hours for months and my supply is fine.  I could never express very much and my supply is fine.

Many people will tell you to introduce formula to help the baby sleep through the night.  I haven't tried it but I have read from others on EB that it does not necessarily help.  Introducing formula can also be bad for your supply ultimately as breasts operate on supply and demand, they are not a storage medium.

It really is worth persisting if you can and getting help.  It just becomes so much easier over time for most of us and it is, factually, better than formula.

Finally, breasts are primarily for feeding babies.  Feeding your baby is not flaunting your breasts.  Feeding your baby is not immodest.  You shouldn't have to hide away, you shouldn't have to put a cloth over yourself, you don't need special cloths.  Other people have the problem if they are offended, you and your baby don't.

#32 SisterMaryElephant

Posted 27 January 2007 - 09:18 PM

I'd want to tell them, that it's not always hard work, that in fact, I find it easier than I think I would find preparing bottles, heating them, etc.  That it's probably easier when half asleep at night to breastfeed than to prepare bottles, etc.  You can go out with minimal baby 'stuff', just grab a couple of nappies and some travel wipes and you're good to go.

My number one tip for successful breastfeeding would be frequent feeding.  feed whenever they cry in the early days, it's comfort for them as well as food, and they have such little stomachs.  So when in doubt - feed.  This will in turn mean less problems with blocked ducts, mastitis, etc.

Nipple shields!  If the idea of another feed is unbearable because of the pain of cracked nipples, use a nipple shield (I found the Avent ones the best). I fed DD1 the entire 15 months with a nipple shield! This was due to her tongue tie and my inverted nipple - so that's another thing:

Most problems have a solution, so ask someone (eg ABA, that Kellymom site is good, or your midwives and health nurses)

#33 ~Cleopatra~

Posted 27 January 2007 - 09:22 PM

Its not always easy, you can work it out and it will be worth it.

Have you support network set up before you give birth - join ABA and start going to your local group meetings if there is one in your area. This way when bub is born you can call someone you know to come and help you.

Learn as much as you can and take your breastfeeding books to hospital. Don't expect the hospital staff to be helpful (personal vent there lol), this was a huge shock for me.

If you do find yourself comping in the first days (because the hospital told you to etc), make sure you follow this up with expressing to help build your supply and get onto a lactation consultant or ABA counsellor for support and a plan to get past this stage.You can get past this but you need to be very careful.

Take the time to work out a comfortable feeding position, it took me about 2 week to get that right the first time.

Edited by ~Cleopatra~, 28 January 2007 - 12:34 PM.

#34 kaishra

Posted 27 January 2007 - 09:47 PM

that if you wait for a baby to open it's mouth wide open like they do in the books then it'll never get fed, it's easier if you put your forefinger above the areola and your middle finger below it, push your forefinger down and in abit so the nipple tips upwards and when the mouth is a bit open put the underside of the areola on bubs' bottom lip and push the rest in. (just had to try this 3 times with DS3 so I could write it properly)

If it hurts bubs hasn't latched on properly, break the seal and try again

If you have a sore back try feeding whilst lying on your side on the bed or couch

#35 censura carnero

Posted 27 January 2007 - 09:59 PM

Cleopatra I have to respectfully diagree with you regarding comping with formula in the early days.  It may have worked for you but for most its a recipe for disaster as it means your supply does not match your babies needs.  I do not discount the fact that some women may have done this and they were fine but as a rule it should not be done as it can be totally destructive on many levels to the breatfeeding relationship.

#36 Jeneral

Posted 27 January 2007 - 10:21 PM

Oh, on the pain issue.. I had no pain at all.  It all happened very easily for me except for when a midwife tried to help.  Sometimes you just need to sit back and relax and just 'let it happen'

Oh.. and when bubs get teeth and you stick your finger in their mouth to break suction so you can reclaim your nipple.. make sure you get the teeth open too... now that is pain!

#37 Princess.cranky.pants

Posted 27 January 2007 - 10:24 PM

I want to mention a bit about formular feeding as it's often seen as the easy fix when there are breastfeeding problems.

Formula doesn't solve all feeding issues. An unsettled BF baby can be just as unsettled on formular. It doesn't make babies sleep though the night. Bottle feeding is not easy. FF mums also have feeding issues and just like with breastfeeding worry if baby is getting to much/not enough feeds.

If your undecided about if you will give breastfeeding ago keep this in mind- If breast feeding doesn't work out you can switch to bottles but it's much much harder to go from bottle to breast.

#38 Rubylicious

Posted 27 January 2007 - 11:34 PM

Oh PP reminded me of another one I wanted to say...

Dont fall for the myth that if you give a breastfed baby a bottle of formula before he or she goes to bed it will make them sleep longer as is heavier in their stomach.

So many people told me this and I tried it. Load of crap!

#39 Guest_~Sal_*

Posted 28 January 2007 - 09:46 AM

That it's such a good feeling when you get it right.  When you look down and see your gorgeous little baby feeding in the best and most natural way posible... and that YOU are doing it.  It's worth persisting.

#40 Harmonica

Posted 28 January 2007 - 09:52 AM

That just because you can only express say 50ml does not mean that your milk supply is terrible - expressing is nowhere near as effective as a baby suckling.

In my 12 months of breastfeeding both my kids, the most I ever expressed in one sitting was 70ml...

#41 Duane Dibley

Posted 28 January 2007 - 10:29 AM

A good way to help with letdown is to straighten your back and wiggle your shoulders around in circles to relax your muscles.  If you're tensed up it inhibits the letdown reflex.  biggrin.gif

#42 Meagan

Posted 28 January 2007 - 10:31 AM

do NOT stress about percentiles on bloody weight charts
That these weight charts (in the blue books and similar) are based on formula fed babys.

#43 TinFeralCat

Posted 28 January 2007 - 11:26 AM

I have a couple more

- Nipples stretch further than you think  wink.gif

- You are allowed to feel proud when it works

#44 Littlegreenfrog

Posted 28 January 2007 - 11:42 AM

That for some people, no matter what you do or try it just doesn't work. If this happens don't feel guilty.


and there should be support for both sides, and if it doesn't work I think hospitals should have a better 'duty of care' and support our new mums!


#45 ~Cleopatra~

Posted 28 January 2007 - 12:05 PM

Cleopatra I have to respectfully diagree with you regarding comping with formula in the early days. It may have worked for you but for most its a recipe for disaster as it means your supply does not match your babies needs. I do not discount the fact that some women may have done this and they were fine but as a rule it should not be done as it can be totally destructive on many levels to the breatfeeding relationship.

Sorry, I should have been more descriptive. I meant to say you can get past it but yes you do need to be vigilant about expressing to build your supply and all that and have help from a lactation consultant or ABA counsellor so you have a plan to get past this stage. Now that I am more experienced I would probably question the necessity to comp in those earlier days but that is what the hospital wanted   wacko.gif . I found the whole comping experience very stressful and I would have been more comforting to know that other mums had got past this stage   and gone on to fully bf.

#46 Freddie'sMum

Posted 28 January 2007 - 12:14 PM

B/F - What I HOPE to do second time around ...........

Find ONE person - lactation consultant - who I trust and understand to HELP me as I got a completely different point of view from every midwife (on every different shift) when I was trying desperately to b/f our newborn.

For me - I wish someone - anyone - had said that b/f would be hard, difficult, just basically tell me that b/f isn't something that just "comes naturally" and you may have problems in doing it.

Wished I'd asked for help earlier . sad.gif  ..................

Helen (Freddie's Mum)
Me - 36
DH - 36
DD - 20 months
Officially ttc #2 - Feb 07

#47 Lexico27

Posted 28 January 2007 - 12:34 PM

Most of mine have already been said:

1. You do not have to feed off both sides. Don't panic if your baby seems satisfied from one side! It happens.

2. NOT leaking, spraying, dribbling milk doesn't mean you aren't making enough milk.  Not everybody leaks.  I don't.  Have still fed for over two years though (cumatively).

3.Expressing is not symbol of how much milk you have.

4.Rolled towels come in real handy for big breasts.

5. Use those first few days after birth and before milk comes in to practice, practice, practice. Get the attachment sorted - find the position that is comfortable.. practice as much as you can before your milk comes in.  It gets you both more comfortable before the luscious milk comes in.

6.  If you don't feel comfortable in any way about your breastfeeding - get help straight away.  Call on a free daystay clinic and get your bum in there. Lactation consultants are there to help.

7.Use your instinct. If you think something isn't right - get a second/third/fourth opinion. You are the only one who knows how it feels.

8.Join the ABA and get your free copy of 'Breastfeeding naturally' BEFORE you have your baby. The book is fabulous and packed full of all the information you could possibly need to breastfeed.

9. Don't listen to the people who say buy formula and bottles (just in case). Why waste money unless you actually really need it?  

10. Don't think that topping up with bottles in the early days mean you can never just breastfeed again. You can wean them from formula if you work on your supply. I did it.

11. Don't think that you have to feed them in a certain position. Some may work, others just don't feel right. I was told over and over that big breasted people should feed in the football hold. It just wasn't for me.

12. www.kellymom.com Best website - full of information.

#48 *Babylove*

Posted 28 January 2007 - 12:47 PM

11. Don't think that you have to feed them in a certain position. Some may work, others just don't feel right. I was told over and over that big breasted people should feed in the football hold. It just wasn't for me.

I have to agree with that. I don't have big breasts (actually I have the opposite) but the nurses at the hospital kept pushing to get me to hold ds in the football position. They told me I was holding him the other way (sorry, can't remembered what it is called) too much and I had to hold him different ways. I personally felt very uncomfortable feeding ds this way, and I also found it more difficult to get him to latch properly. If a nurse was around I would hold him that way in the hospital so I wouldn't get yelled at, but as soon as I went home I never held him that way ever again.

#49 Naomi*

Posted 28 January 2007 - 01:09 PM

Its bloody hard work!! No one tells you that! Throughout your pg people always ask and give you advice about the labour and never mention breastfeeding. Your labour is a small portion, breastfeeding your baby can last 2yrs and beyond biggrin.gif

Do not give formula, it will not help your supply!!!

Babies will not starve if your milk doesnt come in till Day 5

Your baby will get unsettled about 24hrs before your milk comes in, thats a good thing!!

And lastly enjoy it because its a amazing thing biggrin.gif

#50 s-m

Posted 28 January 2007 - 01:28 PM


Edited by s-m, 17 August 2014 - 03:31 PM.

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