Quick Tips For The Tits

In my previous post, I wrote all about the ugly side of our breastfeeding journey. For this post, I wanted to give some tips that I’ve learned to all my breastfeeding mama friends out there.

Disclaimer: I realize that some tips may not work for everyone or people may have done things differently, but these are simply things I’ve learned along the way.


img_26351.) No pain, no gain
In the beginning, breastfeeding may hurt like a lot. Make sure to check with a lactation consultant just to confirm that the latch is proper and your baby is eating. My nipples felt like they were going to fall off the first week! I found that coconut oil and my breastmilk helped ease the pain. If one nipple hurt more than the other, I would pump from that side to give it a rest. The pain goes away within a couple of weeks. Just let your body get used to your baby eating.

img_26322.) Nipple shields
If you were like us and had to supplement in the beginning, your baby may have a bit of nipple confusion. Invest in a nipple shield to help wean from the bottle just until babe gets used to eating from your breast. These also really help if you’re having a lot of pain from nursing.

fullsizerender-153.) Use a boppy and a stool for the cradle hold
Props to Nurse B for this- it’s a life saver! I found it easiest to latch in this position when I had the boppy around me and my feet on the stool. This position really helps if you’re having trouble with breastfeeding in the beginning. I suggest doing this is you’re still working on the perfect latch.

img_26344.) Football hold
For all my c-section mamas and/or mamas with twins, I highly recommend this position! It wasn’t very easy for me to do at first, but with practice, I was able to feed Ambrosia this way. She wasn’t pressing against my scar the whole time and it was most comfortable while I was still healing.

img_26365.) Nursing while lying down
Best. nursing position. everrrrrr! We co-sleep, and whenever Ambrosia wakes up, I just pull out my tit and bam. Back to sleep. Lol! But seriously, for all the mamas who co-sleep, this is the best way to nurse in the middle of the night.

freezerstash6.) Having an oversupply
Though it may sound like the best thing ever, there is caution to producing way too much milk. With all the research I’ve done, I learned that pumping before 6 weeks is not recommended (unless your baby has trouble latching or your doc says too). The thing is, our bodies make how much milk it thinks our babies need. So if you’re pumping as early as 1  week, your body is going to think your baby needs that much milk. When your body starts producing so much and you miss a feed or a pump session, you could get mastitis. A lot of articles I’ve read and lactation consultants I’ve spoken with have recommended to allow your supply to regulate before you start to pump so much. However, to each their own and if you do decide to pump early, try not to miss a session/feeding. 🙂

pump-milk_mrs_flinger-flickr7.) Pumping is not an indication of your milk supply!!!
This is very important! Mamas, please remember that your pump output does not indicate how much milk you make. A lot of times mamas get discouraged because they aren’t pumping oz and oz during a session. As long as your baby has enough wet diapers per day, you’re fine. Sometimes our body doesn’t react to the pump well, so you’re not able to express the milk that way. Try different pumps; try manual ones and electric ones. Always check your pump parts to see if there’s any problems. Make sure the flanges fit your breast properly. If your valve is rubber, always check that there are no holes; the suction won’t work if there are.

fullsizerender-138.) Lactation consultants are there to help you
There is absolutely nothing wrong with contacting a LC! Check for local groups in your area. If you live on Guam, check in at Sagua Managu Birthing Center with Nurse Barbara Mafnas and join her for the breastfeeding socials! She’s a gem and will definitely do all she can to help with your breastfeeding journey.

img_26429.) Talk with other breastfeeding moms
Confide in your mama-friends; ask questions, seek advice. There’s nothing better than chatting with another mama who has been in the same boat as you. Join mommy groups online or look for local groups in your area. Sometimes being around other moms will help ease your mind.

img_264610.) Boosting/maintaining your milk supply
There are so many things I’ve tried that helped boost/maintain my supply. The best thing thus far is to feed on demand. Your body will produce more milk if you continue to put baby to the breast. As for foods: water, water, water. Stay hydrated, mamas!! The Glacier Freeze Gatorade and Coconut Water are other things I drink. I also make my own lactation cookies because I don’t really like the Boobie Bars. Remember, you burn a lot of calories from breastfeeding so you should keep your calorie intake up. When you feel yourself getting hungry, eat. I’ve forgotten to eat some days and felt like I needed to faint after a pump session/feed. Another thing is not to skip pump sessions! Like I mentioned above: your body makes milk according to how often your baby feeds.

img_264011.) You’re allowed to have a drink… or two
One thing that bothres me a lot is when I’m at a party or out to dinner and someone tells me I can’t have one drink. Umm, excuse me?! Contrary to the popular belief, you can drink while breastfeeding. I wish more people would do their research on it before they blast your head off for ordering a glass of wine. Of coure you should be responsible and drink in moderation, but it is ok to have a drink. Check out this article here for more information.

fullsizerender-1412.) DO NOT PUMP AND DUMP!
Okay mamas. Think about how much time you put into getting your pump, putting the parts together, and then staying in the same position for 10 minutes just to pump your milk out? Time consuming, right? Totally. The last thing you want to do is waste your liquid gold! If you’ve left breastmilk out for a longer period of time than the CDC recommends for feeding, save that liquid gold for a milk bath! That’s right- milk bath. Breastmilk is supposed to be good for the skin. It contains a bunch of antibodies that help heal damaged skin and also makes skin softer than using a mild soap. You basically fill your baby’s tub (or your bath tub) with water and add a couple of ounces of milk. Once the water looks cloudy, let your baby bathe in it for about 10 minutes. Rinse your baby, and voila!

14705650_808875595921755_2577414713912600637_n13.) Your milk is perfect for you baby
How amazing is that? Once our baby’s saliva is on our nipples, our body makes the exact milk that baby needs. If you are sick, keep nursing! If your baby gets sick, your body will produce the right anitibodies to help fight the bacteria. Don’t forget that if you’re pumping and there isn’t much fat in the milk, try not to stress too much. Remember that your body is making the best milk for your littles.

 Xoxo!

 

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