Feeding With Breast - 5 Tips To Help You Get Started

Feeding with breast can be challenging for new moms. But breast-feeding is essential not just for your baby but also for your health. In fact, experts say that it can help shed off pounds after childbirth. If you find it hard to breast feed your child, here are some tips given by experts to help you get started.

1. Ask for the expert's assistance. 
It can be your mom or your doctor. Although you can read about the proper way to breast feed your baby, doing it on your own is a different story. If it is your first time to feed your baby with your breastmilk, you may ask the assistance of your mom, your doctor, maternity nurse or a hospital lactation consultant. You must know how to position your baby so that he/she is latching on correctly.

You may start by getting comfortable with it. Before you start the process of feeding with breast milk, you must support yourself first with pillows and then carry your baby close to your breast. You must support his/her head using your one hand and support your breast with your other hand. If your baby is not feeding, you may tickle his/her lower lip using your nipple. This action will encourage his/her mouth to open wide.

2. Allow your newborn to set the pace
Most of the time, babies need to be fed every two to three hours. But you must watch for signs of hunger, like sucking motions, restlessness and the like.

You must allow your baby to feed until your breast feels soft. Then, you must try burping him/her. You may offer the second breast if your baby is still hungry.

It is important that your baby nurses on one breast at a time. However, if your newborn is nursing on only one breast during feeding time, you must pump your other breast to protect your milk supply and relieve pressure.

3. Take care of your breasts. 
You may allow the milk to dry on your nipple as it can soothe them. But you may also pat your nipple dry, if you are in a hurry. You may also use bra pads if your breasts leak between feedings. But you must change them often.If you notice that your nipples are dry, you may use purified lanolin or hydrogel dressing after feeding time. It can soothe your nipples and retain their moisture. You must avoid using shampoo or soap when cleaning your nipples.

4. Make healthier lifestyle choices
Feeding with breast requires moms to follow healthy lifestyle choices. By this it means that you must eat a healthy diet. Choose to eat fruits and vegetables, instead of processed foods. Opt for water and fresh juice, instead of soda. You must also rest as much as you can. And avoid smoking as it can reduce your milk supply. Smoking will also alter the taste of your milk, which will interfere with the breastfeeding process.

5. Do get discouraged. 
Feeding with breast is tough for first time moms. So, you must not get discouraged. It is okay to have a slow start. You must often breast feed your baby so your breasts will produce more milk.

You may ask a lactation consultant or your doctor if you have any difficulty feeding with breast. This is especially true if feeding becomes painful or if your baby is not gaining weight.

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