Five Breastfeeding Tips To Ensure A Smooth Start
|January 2, 2012||Posted by under Breastfeeding|
Implement these breastfeeding tips into your routine to get breastfeeding off to a great start. Breastfeeding your new baby is one of the best choices you will make to start his or her life. For some women breastfeeding comes naturally with no problems. For other women it takes practice and support. Whether you are a seasoned breastfeeding pro, or learning for the first time, building a strong foundation of good breast feeding habits will ensure a positive nursing experience. These breastfeeding tips will get you started.
Breastfeeding Tips For Hydration
Every time you breastfeed your baby drink an 8 oz. glass of water. In order for your body to make enough milk you need to take in extra water for hydration. Sometimes the chaos of motherhood takes over and you neglect the proper fueling of your body. This can put a strain on your milk supply. Before you sit down to nurse, fill your water glass.
To further encourage good milk production, substitute 3 or 4 glasses of water with a nursing tea. I make a gallon at a time, with a bulk herb nursing tea, and keep it in the refrigerator. I love the taste, I actually prefer it over water. One of the main ingredients in the tea is nettles. Nettles have a high mineral content which works to nourish your body, as well as provide healthier breastmilk for your baby.
You can also buy nursing tea in tea bag form, this way is more expensive though.
Breastfeeding Tips For Nutrition
Keep easy nourishing foods stocked in the pantry. In the same vein as drinking each time you nurse, eat a small nutritious snack. Small is the operative word here. A handful of nuts, a serving of yogurt, and ounce of cheese, or an an apple, hard boiled egg, or tuna salad are all good choices. You will be surprised at how hungry you will be as a breastfeeding woman in those first few months. If you fill up on nutritious foods you are much more likely to quickly shed your pregnancy weight than if you eat junk food. I like to focus on proteins while I am nursing. Although I crave carbohydrates, the protein helps to keep my blood sugar and hormones balanced. Also, the higher quality nutrition you take in, the higher quality of breast milk you will produce.
Try to eat at least one serving of oatmeal each day. Oatmeal is a galactagogue. A galactagogue is a food, herb or beverage which stimulates milk production. I love to bake a huge batch of oatmeal cookies and have two each day. Here’s my recipe.
Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Nursing Cookies
1 ¬æ cup flour
1 tsp. baking soda
¬Ω tsp. salt
1 ¬º cup packed brown sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
¬Ω cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 TBSP. milk
2 ¬Ω cup oats
2 cup chocolate chips
1 cup nuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 375. Cream butter, sugar and brown sugar together. Add eggs and beat until well mixed. Add dry ingredients minus the oats. At end mix in nuts, oats and chocolate chips. Bake 8-12 minutes.
Another oatmeal recipe we use often is Baked Oatmeal.
Nursing Mother’s Baked Oatmeal (Share it with your family too!)
1 c. milk
1/2 c. melted butter or applesauce for lower fat
3/4 c. brown sugar or sucanat
2 teas. baking powder
1 teas. salt
3 cups oats
1 teas. cinnamon
Combine all ingredients well, spread into a buttered 11×13 baking dish (or spray it with Pam), bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
The great part about making oatmeal cookies or baked oatmeal is that you will always have oats available to grab quickly. Making oatmeal in a pot takes extra time, and dirty dishes each time you eat it. If you make cookies and a pan of baked oatmeal over the week-end, you can eat it all week long.
Breastfeeding Tips For Supplementation
Keep taking your prenatal vitamin and an Omega 3 supplement. I take 6000 mg. of fish oil daily. This amount may seem high, and is higher than the recommended dosage. However, I follow supplementation recommendations from The Mood Cure: The 4-Step Program to Take Charge of Your Emotions–Today
This is a fantastic book if you have ever struggled with feeling overwhelmed, depressed, anxious, or even if your hormones give you a run for your money each month.
Your body is still providing for your baby even when you are no longer pregnant. Do not neglect you own health, keep taking your vitamins. Extra B vitamins can also help new moms balance their emotions and hormones. But do yourself a favor and check out The Mood Cure.
Breastfeeding Tips For Sleep
Get extra rest. Your body is still recovering from childbirth and adjusting to the stress of a new baby. You need to remain rested. Nap when the baby naps during the day and any other time you can grab some extra sleep. A well rested mother can better respond to her baby’s needs.
I know for a lot of women, and for me especially, if I am exhausted, my milk production suffers. I don’t have the liberty to take a nap in the afternoon, with 6 children. But when I do need some extra sleep, as soon as my husband gets home from work, I go take a nap. Sometimes this means I skip dinner with the family and eat later, but the best gift you can give your family, husband and baby is to be well-rested.
Every problem in your life as a new mother will seem larger if you are exhausted. Rest is a primary priority.
Breastfeeding Tips For Relieving Pain
If you are feeling pain, get breast feeding help. There is a certain amount of discomfort that is par for the course in breastfeeding. However, if you are feeling extreme pain, see a lactation consultant, or contact a La Leche League representative. You will want to have your latch checked by someone with experience. This is extremely important if you wish to maintain a long time nursing relationship. You must be comfortable.
You may need to adjust and try new breastfeeding positions, or apply Cold Compresses, Booby Tubes are my favorite, Lanolin , or allow your nipples time to air dry after each feeding.
Remember, breastfeeding is an amazing gift that you are giving to your baby. But do not neglect your own health in the process. Keep this helpful list close to the spot where you normally breastfeed as a reminder to take care of yourself.