My Top 5 Breastfeeding Tips

1- Getting a good latch.

Your baby must be latched on correctly with a large mouthful of breast. You should see more of the dark skin of your nipple above baby’s top lip than below. And your nipple should be pointed to the roof of baby’s mouth. And remember to bring baby to your breast, not breast to baby!

2- Experience with feeding positions.

You can feed you baby in many comfortable positions. Such as baby laying in front of your tummy, with her tummy against yours. Another good way is in the ‘rugby ball’ position. I don’t mean that have have to lob your baby over some big white goal-post or cover her in mud. Your baby can be held in one arm with her body running under your shoulder. This is a favourite of mine because as you get more confident you can use your free hand to still drink your cuppa! Or even try laying down with your body and baby’s body running parallel.

3- Baby should be supported.

Support your baby’s head, shoulders (not knees or toes) and their back. Their head and back should run in a straight line so they can swallow easy and their neck not twisted. You try drinking with your head facing your shoulder. Not comfy!!

4- Make sure you have essentials close before you start.

Trust me. I soon learnt this. Nothing worse than just getting baby attached then realising you have not got a glass of water (and you WILL) get thirsty. Or maybe that your phone is in the other room and your waiting for an important phone call. You will need to up your fluid intake when breastfeeding and you will find you are mega thirsty when doing night feeds. Also a muslin cloth is very handy for wiping up any mess made baby (or you. I once squirted milk all over Willow when trying to get her to feed. No-one warns you that milk fly’s in all directions!)

5- Read up as much as you can.

Read as many books as possible and talk to women who have breastfed their babies. This will give you a good range of knowledge and some comfort that you are not alone when going through a rough patch. It helps to talk to other women. Not one baby is the same when it comes to feeding. They all feed differently, At different times and in different ways. All information gained is to be treated as a big holy grail to successful feeding.

Finally….

there are loads of people you can talk to if you are unsure of anything. You may find these numbers useful…

The National Breastfeeding Helpline- 0300 100 0212

www.nationalbreastfeedinghelpline.org.uk

NCT Breastfeeding line- 0300 330 0771

www.nct.org.uk

or, you can even drop me a message on my facebook or twitter.

Also, Dads – please check out Jay’s top tips for Dads during breastfeeding

Getting To Grips With Breastfeeding

I always knew, before I even got pregnant, that I wanted to breastfeed. My sisters were breastfed and my mum always made it look easy-peasy. Once I had my baby, and started breastfeeding myself, all these horrific stories from the family women have come out. Stories of engorgement, mastitis, cracked nipples… and even the jealousy between a mother, a banana and a very hungry baby (don’t ask! Lets just say the banana saw a grisly fate and my mother remained hungry!!). Breastfeeding went off to a fantastic start. Soon after my daughter was placed onto my chest and we had skin-to-skin contact she nuzzled for the breast. She latched on straight away and stayed there taking the wonderfully rich colostrum for around 20 minutes. I really do believe that the skin-to-skin I had with her as soon as she was born helped enormously to get feeding off to the best start. If any of my readers want to ask me any questions or just for a chat about breastfeeding please message me on facebook and I will give you the best honest advice I can. Also anyone interested in watching something called a ‘breast crawl’, Youtube it. It really is one of the most amazing things you can watch on there… other than talking dogs and laughing babies.

At first I was quite embarrassed about feeding Willow in public, heck, even in my own home in front of guests and even Jay at first! Silly now, I know. Because I really can say that feeding my daughter this way feels the most natural and amazing thing ever. I would take myself upstairs to our bedroom so I could feed privately. That lasted about a week. I soon realised that people were not embarrassed by the presence of my baby stuck to my bosom, no-one even cared to be honest. No-one stared and no-one asked any silly questions. I realised that I could really do this and I was actually quite good at it.

ok…. I lied. A little bit…My milk came in and I cried (ALOT!). I expressed some milk and my boobs just got bigger….and bigger…and bigger!! I looked like Katie Price and I did not want to flaunt it! I was ready to give up. And this was only 3 days after the birth. At this point I didn’t know that it would get any better. Jay reassured me that it would. Bless my man, he consulted Dr. Internet and read up on all the hints and tips that he could that would help me. Low and behold, 4 days later my boobs went down, Willow could feed properly again (without near suffocation) and I was happy once more. the breast pump went back in the box to gather dust 🙂

Willow and myself have had to work quite hard to make sure that we both succeed with happy feeding. There have been hurdles to over come on the way. Like discovering the most comfortable position or getting a good latch. Check back later to read my ‘Top five tips to successful breastfeeding.’

skin to skin contact