one of most important things you can do for yourself and your new baby. However it is not
always easy to get started, it is not necessarily instinctive. Here are a few tips for
Here are a few tips for
Start early - within the
first few hours.
Make sure someone
experienced (a midwife) shows you how to do it properly.
Feed your child from both
Make yourself comfortable
before you begin
You will have plenty of
mild if you eat a variety of foods each day as well as lots of filtered water
Demand feed your baby
Feed the baby for however
long he or she wants to feed. However make sure your baby is actually swallowing and that
the position is correct.
If your nipples are sore,
something needs readjusting - his position or attachment.
Do not use milk from the
bottle in addition to your breastmilk as this may lessen your supply. It could also
encourage your child to prefer sucking on the teat and not your nipple
Feeding at night helps
your milk supply and may help you sleep better.
Do not put any creams,
lotions or ointments on your nipples. They emit a smell which attracts your baby.
Human breast milk is
made for human babies, it is the most perfect food for them to have. Its the right
kind of milk for your baby.
Breast feeding brings
about a special close feeling between mother and baby. The breast is a comfort to a baby
when the child is not feeling well or experiencing some discomfort.
It is safe. The
mothers milk, especially the first milk (colostrum) has antibodies in it which helps
protect the baby from many diseases and disorders.
Reduces the risk of SIDS
(Sudden Infant Death Syndrome).
It is convenient. Mothers
who breast feed dont have to bother with sterilising bottles and teats or worry
about the milk spoiling in warm weather.
It is nutritious. Breast
milk contains all of the nutrients needed by the baby for the first 4 or 6 months of life.
These nutrients are in the right amounts and in easily digested form.
Breast feeding is
encouraged for the first year but after 4-6 months solids may also be introduced.
Breast feeding helps the
mothers womb resume to normal shape faster.
It is cheaper.
The best advice about
breast feeding is for you to be relaxed and calm, and enjoy your new baby. If you are
having any problems breast feeding, seek help from your doctor or midwife.
sometimes this can
occur when the breast hasnt emptied fully, you are not nursing your child in the
correct position, missing feeds or the child is not nursing for long enough periods. Your
breasts may feel uncomfortable. You can try to express some milk yourself.
this can occur when
your breasts are too full. This usually occurs when the milk first comes in. You can
usually relieve it by having a warm shower and expressing some of the milk.
Sometimes the breasts are
too tight for the baby to feed properly - just express a little before feeding to soften
Sore nipples -
if your baby is not
sucking correctly on your nipples, they can become sore. They will heal quickly if the
position is corrected. If your nipples are cracked or blistered, feed on the other side.
Nipples tend to heal quickly, so try to keep going with your breast feeding.
usually people worry
about this for no reason. If your baby looks well, has clear skin and eyes, is wetting 7 -
8 nappies per day, having some bowel movements and is putting on weight you should be
assured that you are feeding him or her enough. The more the breast is sucked and the more
milk is withdrawn from it, the more milk there will be produced.
Is there anything You
should be aware of?
Please see your doctor
before taking any medications, these days you are able to breastfeed while taking a
variety of medications but it is best to be sure. You definitely should not be smoking or
have your baby anywhere near a smoker.
This must be done
properly and not rushed as you may stress yourself and your baby. Breastfeed for at least
three months as it can give your child a good healthy start in life.
To avoid having to wean
from a bottle as well, wean your child off breastmilk when he or she is ready to drink
from a cup. This is usually when they are about 6 to 9 months old. However, there are no
hard rules and if you and your child are both happy breastfeeding, continue to do so.
Take your time in weaning -
ideally it should be done over 3 or 4 weeks.
Start to replace a feed
with milk from a cup.
If your child puts up a
fight or looks miserable with the idea. Do not push it - just give your breast again and
try again at another feed. If however this continues, you and your partner will need to be
a little firmer and not give your breast as an alternative. Eventually the child will
accept this. They may still wish to breastfeed morning and night however, for a while.