Tips for successful breastfeeding

Breast-feeding can be challenging. Many new mums have their own fears and dilemmas to deal with when it comes to breastfeeding. There are a lot of factors that can make breastfeeding painful for the mom and frustrating for the baby.

Benefits of Breastfeeding:

  • Breast milk contains the right balance of nutrients for your baby.

  • Breast milk is easier to digest than is commercial formula, and the antibodies in breast milk boost your baby's immune system.

  • Breast-feeding might even help you lose weight after the baby is born.

Here are few tips to make the process of breastfeeding easier:

  1. Plan a gentle birth: Plan a birth without much of disturbance. Too much noise, harsh lights, and more medical interventions have an impact on the baby. The transition from womb to the world needs to be gentle.

  2. Practice breast crawl: Separating mother and the baby right after birth is going to dehydrate the baby, hamper bonding and make it difficult for the baby to get on with latching, which is reflexive right after birth. A separation for long time between the mother and baby can make it difficult.

  3. Skin to skin contact: Ask your doctor to have a skin to skin contact with your baby right after the birth. This will help your baby feel secure and protected. It will also give the baby adequate assurance and support to start suckling and get on with breastfeeding.

  4. Hold your baby right: Learn how to manage a newborn. Hold your baby properly to help ensure better latching. If you choose to feed on the left side, your baby's head should lie on the crook of your left arm, while the entire hand supports your baby's back. Put your right hand beneath your left hand for added support.

Apart from that you need to make healthy lifestyle choices. It is as important as breastfeeding:

  • To keep up your energy, stick to healthy-eating basics, such as choosing plenty of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Your health care provider might recommend taking a daily multivitamin as well.

  • Consume lot of fluids to make your body stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water and add juice and milk to your diet. Avoid caffeine and alcoholic drink.

  • Rest as much as possible. If you can, sleep when the baby sleeps.

  • Do not smoke during that period. Smoking exposes babies to nicotine, which can interfere with your baby's sleep. Smoke also increases the risk of sudden infant death syndrome and other respiratory illnesses.

  • Give vitamin D supplements to the baby. Breast milk might not provide enough vitamin D, which helps your baby absorb calcium and phosphorus and other nutrients necessary for strong bones.

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