NEW YORK: As a first time mother, I wasn’t prepared for anything baby-related. I went along and learned, made mistakes, kicked myself for being silly, and also got a few things right (thanks to mother’s instinct).
Now in hindsight, I feel there are so many things I know now that I wished I had known back then, and saved myself all the silly mistakes I made. And I am sure it’s the same for most first-time mommies. One of the things I wish I was better prepared for was breastfeeding. Though I had no problem getting my baby to latch or faced lactation issues, but I feel I did not treat the whole idea with the respect it should have. Later, when I came across other moms who faced umpteen different problems with breastfeeding I realised that any information and wisdom related to breastfeeding is gold, and can help a new mom. So here are some breastfeeding tips from real moms that will definitely be helpful.
Invest in a comfortable chair: Swollen feet post-delivery is not as uncommon as you think. A mom had terribly painful swollen feet and was advised to not sit with her feet unsupported and hanging, especially during breastfeeding. So it is a good idea to invest in a rocking chair, or find a comfortable sitting position whenever you breastfeed.
Use pillows to prop up the baby: Post-partum weakness can make holding a newborn difficult, especially if you have to nurse the baby for over 40 minutes. What I used to do was put a couple of pillows on my lap and put my baby on top of it, so she could reach my breast. This saved me the task of holding the baby’s weight and was comfortable for both of us. You can also get a nursing pillow.
DON’T use breastfeeding covers: Imagine having to eat under a blanket, in complete darkness! Most babies don’t approve of being covered, and they can’t be blamed. They’ll push away the cover, get cranky, can’t feed, and then get more cranky. Do you really need a crying, screaming baby? Breastfeeding is a natural process of nourishing your child, and you should only think of your child’s comfort.
Consult a lactation consultant: Often, new mums get confused and exasperated with the myths that most people try to convince them with. If you feel you are facing any issues with regards to latching, milk supply, or just anything about breastfeeding, do not hesitate to consult a lactation expert.
Start pumping from the beginning: Unless you are a stay-at-home who can breastfeed on demand throughout the day AND night, you might not need to pump. But for other moms, who might have to step out, get some work done or simply catch a breath from the (seemingly) non-stop breastfeeding, pumping is god-sent. Start early to get your child acclimatized to a bottle.