Breastfeeding your newborn

Welcome to my blog on breastfeeding basics! I’m Sonali Shivlani, a pregnancy and parenting consultant, and the founder of Baby360Degrees. One of the most beautiful and important aspects of early motherhood is breastfeeding your newborn. It’s a unique bond that not only provides essential nutrients but also fosters a strong connection between you and your baby. In this blog, I’ll guide you through the fundamentals of breastfeeding to help you embark on a successful and fulfilling journey. Let’s get started!

The Benefits of Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding is more than just a way to feed your baby. It offers a multitude of benefits, both for the baby and the mother.

A:Benefits for Your Newborn
Breast milk is a superfood for your little one. It provides essential nutrients, antibodies, and enzymes that support your baby’s growth and development. The WHO recommends that all babies are exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months to get the best benefits.

B:Benefits for Mom
Breastfeeding also has numerous advantages for mothers. It aids in postpartum weight loss, reduces the risk of certain diseases, and fosters a unique mother-child bond.


Preparing for Breastfeeding

Before your baby arrives, it’s essential to get prepared for your breastfeeding journey.

A:Choosing the Right Nursing Bra
Invest in a comfortable nursing bra that provides support and easy access for feeding. Keep in mind that your nursing bra should be a good fit and not with underwires.

 B:Creating a Nursing Station
Set up a cozy corner with essentials like pillows, blankets, and a water bottle. This will help you stay relaxed during feeding sessions. You can also keep some healthy dry snacks handy as this will help you to deal with the breastfeeding hunger pangs.


The Latching Process

Proper latching is crucial for a successful breastfeeding experience.

Get comfortable and ensure that your baby’s mouth is at the same level as your nipple. This helps in achieving a deep latch. The key to a good position is that the baby should be tummy to tummy with the mother.

Guide your baby to latch onto your breast correctly. A good latch ensures that your baby gets enough milk and helps prevent nipple soreness. The baby should take a major portion of the areola in the mouth and while breastfeeding the lips should be flanged open.


Establishing a Feeding Schedule

While newborns often dictate their feeding times, it’s essential to understand their cues.

A:Feeding on Demand
Newborns typically feed every 2-3 hours. Be attentive to your baby’s cues for hunger, such as rooting or sucking on their fingers. It is important to remember that your newborn baby needs to take a minimum of 8 feeds every 24 hours.

B:Nighttime Feedings
Be prepared for nighttime feedings. Create a soothing environment to make these nighttime sessions as stress-free as possible. Your prolactin levels are the highest from 2 am to 5 am and this is the time you will produce the highest quantity of milk.


Troubleshooting Common Issues

Breastfeeding may present challenges, but most of them can be resolved with the right approach.

A:Nipple Soreness
Nipple soreness is common, especially in the early days. Use lanolin cream and ensure a proper latch to minimize discomfort.

B:Low Milk Supply
If you’re concerned about your milk supply, consult a lactation consultant. Your baby should pass minimum 7 urines in 24 hours and the stools must be soft, seedy and yellow in color.


The Importance of Self-Care

Taking care of yourself is paramount during your breastfeeding journey.

A:Diet and Hydration
Consume a balanced diet and stay hydrated to support your milk production.

B:Rest and Relaxation
Make time for yourself. Rest when your baby sleeps, and don’t hesitate to ask for help from friends or family.

ConclusionCongratulations on making it through our journey into breastfeeding basics! Remember, every breastfeeding experience is unique. Be patient with yourself, seek support when needed, and cherish the bond you’re building with your newborn. I hope this blog has provided you with valuable insights, and I wish you a fulfilling and joyful breastfeeding journey with your little one.If you are facing any breastfeeding challenges we can help you with an in-person consult at PD Hinduja Hospital Khar West, Mumbai or with a Video Consult.
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