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Helpful tips for breast feeding


                                    Different feeding positions

Some mothers find that the following positions are helpful ways to get comfortable and support their babies in finding a good latch. You can also use pillows under your arms, elbows, neck, or back to give you added comfort and support. Keep in mind that what works well for one feeding may not work well for the next. Keep trying different positions until you are comfortable.
                                                                                                                  
  •  Cradle hold: an easy, common hold that is comfortable for most mothers and babies. The baby’s head is cradled in the crook of your arm and her whole body facing you.

    The baby's knees are underneath your other breast. The infant's head, back, and legs should all be in a straight line.

    This position can be held for the entire duration of the feeding. Sit in a comfortable chair, with arm rests if possible.




     
  • Cross cradle or transitional hold: useful for premature babies or babies with a weak suck because it gives extra head support and may help babies get latched.

    Hold your baby along the opposite arm from the breast you are using.

    Support your baby's head with the palm of your hand at the base of her neck.



  • Clutch or “football” hold: useful for mothers who had a C-section and mothers with large breasts, flat or inverted nipples, or a strong let-down reflex. It is also helpful for babies who prefer to be more upright. This holds allows you to better see and control your baby’s head and to keep the baby away from C-section incision.

    Hold your baby at your side, lying on her back, with her head at the level of your nipple. Support baby’s head with the palm of your hand at the base of the head.  Place a pillow under your elbow to help you support your baby's bottom. Use your other hand to support your breast.

    This position allows you to control the baby's head and assures good positioning to latch on.



  • Side-lying position: useful for mothers who had a C-section or to help any mother get extra rest while the baby breast feeds. 

    Lie on your side with one arm supporting your head. Your baby can lie beside you with the head facing your breast. Pull your baby close, so your baby faces your body and place a pillow behind to support the baby.





                                      Tips for breast feeding
  • Make sure your baby is well attached to your breast. This will help your body make the right amount of milk and stop your breast getting sore.
     
  • The more you breast feed your baby, the more milk you will produce. When your baby comes off the first breast, offer the second. It doesn’t matter if they are not interested or don’t feed for long, or even if they feed for longer on the second breast. This is fine-just start with this breast next time.

  • There is no need to offer formula milk in addition to breast milk. If your baby feels hungrier, feed more often, rather than offer formula milk.

  • The first few weeks may be difficult and frustrating for you but don't give up. If you can resist supplementing your baby's diet with formula feedings for the first four to six weeks, your body will respond appropriately and produce an adequate supply of milk.

  • Try not to give your baby any other food or drink before the age of about six months. This will reduce your milk supply and could increase the chance of your baby getting ill.

  • Try not to give your baby a dummy until breast feeding is going well, as this can also reduce your milk supply.

  • When you are out and about, wear something that will make it easier for you to breast feed.

                                 Breast feeding more than one baby

Twins, triplets or more can be breast fed. Because multiple babies are more likely to be born prematurely and to have a low birth weight, breast milk is especially important for their well being. To start with, you may find it easier to feed each of your babies separately, until you feel confident about handling them at the same time and feeding is well established. This may take some time, so it can be really helpful to accept any offers of help around the house from family and friends. Over time, you will learn what works best for you and your babies.



Triplets can be breast fed either two together and then one after, or all three rotated at each feed. Alternatively, you can use a combination of breast and formula, depending on the babies and your milk supply.

                                       Non- stop feeding

Sometimes it seems as if your baby wants to feed all the time. There could be several reasons:

  • It could be a growth spurt. Many mums notice an initial small spurt around two weeks, and a bigger one around six weeks. This is often accompanied by a softening of your breast, as they have got used to producing the right amount of milk at the right time.
     
  • When your baby is ill or teething, she may often want to feed a lot. Sometimes she will feed all the time for a day or so, before she develops an illness. When she is ill, breast milk is the best thing for her.

  • Your baby may be hungry because she is not reaching the fat-rich hind milk. If she is mostly taking foremilk, which is thinner, she will want to go back to the breast more often. Check that she is well attached on the breast. Let the baby complete one breast before offering the second one.

                                       Introducing infant formula
                        
If you are planning to go back to work, you may want to introduce infant formula milk along with your breast milk. However, keep in mind that introducing infant formula will reduce the amount of breast milk you produce. This may make breast feeding more difficult.  Most mothers find it easier, more comfortable and less likely to cause mastitis (painful, inflamed breasts) if they gradually stop breast feeding. So give yourself plenty of time for the changeover, and cut out one feed at a time.

Try the first formula feed when your baby is happy and relaxed-not when they are hungry. It may help if someone other than you gives the first feeds, so that your baby is not near you and smelling your breast milk. It may take your baby a little time to get used to the new arrangements. So keep trying, stay calm and don’t force it.

If you are going back to work, make sure you start at least a few weeks before you are due to go back. You may find you don’t need to introduce a bottle as your baby can drink from a cup and you can breast feed when you are at home. Changing from breast to formula feeding can be an emotional time for you. It’s best to do it gradually to give yourself time to adapt and your body time to reduce the amount of milk it makes.

 

 



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