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Breastfeeding Tips 2010-06-10 12:00:19

Lil Community: Seeking Breastfeeding Tips

Nine months can seem like a lifetime when you're pregnant. LilSugar reader marley360 is preparing for her upcoming arrival and is looking for some advice in The Pregnancy Posse group.

I am expecting my first baby the beginning of November, and of all the things I could be worrying about, the only thing bugging me is breastfeeding.

I know I want to breastfeed exclusively, but still pump some so that my fiance can help at night. However, since I've never used a pump or breastfed I am afraid that I won't be able to transition back and forth and that I will dry up and have to switch to formula. Does anyone have any advice on how I can ease my mind?

Want to talk pregnancy with other expectant mamas? Get the conversation started in The Pregnancy Posse group!

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marley360 marley360 7 years
I wanted to first of all say thank you for all the advice. I am sorry I haven't been able to comment sooner. Since my original post I have invested in "The Great Expectations Guide to Breastfeeding", so far it is a very useful book. I am still looking into lactation consultants in my area. Also, a friend gave me her BRAND new Medala Instyle pump. She never used it cause her milk wouldn't come in. So I'm hoping to be able to use it a little bit. I am trying not get too worked up or anxious about breastfeeding but it is hard since no one in my family ever did it and since my 2 best friends both had problems when they did. But I am taking all of your advice into account and hoping I will be able to do it. I especially found it helpful hearing about when to start pumping and transitioning to at least part- time bottle feeding. I know my fiance will be sad if he doesn't get to do a few midnight feedings.
LaurenG22 LaurenG22 7 years
best website ever: Also-- try try try to NOT supplement with formula in the hospital if you can help it... really think long and hard about doing it if the nurses/ob pressure you. If need be, see if they can let you pump and you can syringe feed the baby. Very rarely does a baby truly need to eat THAT much in the first 3 days before your milk comes in. Colostrum is amazing stuff. Lastly, try to get follow up support. here in Germany they have a midwife check on you for up to 8 visits post partum and they caught the beginnings of my mastitis which probably saved my breastfeeding relationship with my daughter. Lastly, I also recommend co-sleeping. It is SO much easier in the night time. The baby gets the milk she needs and your supply is better off, especially if you are working during the day and are seperated from the baby.
MonkiChriz MonkiChriz 7 years
My firstborn is 7.5 months and here are my tips: 1. Get nursing tanks. Nursing bras are nice but that meant my tummy was exposed and cold. Get cloth/reusable breast pads so milk doesn't go through your clothes. 2. Everyone's different. Never had pain with breastfeeding. Milk came in 1 month early. Don't buy gel pads unless you need it. (Heard cold lettuce leaves worked great.) 3. If you're going back to work, get a new Medela double electric. (I accidentally got milk through a tube and it came out the other side so I don't believe in using a used pump.) If you're staying home, you can always hand express your milk if you're being frugal. 4. Fenugreek is great for increasing milk supply. LC said Mother's Milk teas aren't strong enough for most women. 5. I don't believe in nipple confusion (my son was on the bottle by day 6). But, I do believe babies can get lazy and prefer the bottle. 6. Use different positions to BF. Otherwise, baby can get slightly flatter head on one side. My son has not had a single cold since he was born in late October! Yea for breastfeeding.
AppLady AppLady 7 years
My hints: Do try to toughen up your nipples before birth. Babies can be really hard on soft skin. Remember, if it upsets your stomach or gives you gas it might do the same to your baby. My daughter was being very fussy. Luckily my neighbor was a nurse and noticed I was eating coleslaw. Once I started really watching what I ATE my daughter did much better. Certain foods can also make your milk taste funny. At least that is what I was told. Keep at it, it's so healthy for the baby.
CathleenKelly CathleenKelly 7 years
I have a 2 moth old and I have been breast feeding and pumping and it is awesome! When he was born he was 8lbs 14oz but lost about 10% of his weight in the first two days. The nurse told me they needed to give him formula because my milk was not in and they gave him 2oz. The next day my milk came in so that was the end of that! My Dr. said that it wouldn't hurt, but try not to do the formula thing at all! I had a lactation consultant in the hospital and they gave me some great ideas, but most of all just made me feel comfortable. I didn't do much research or take a class so I didn't know not to introduce a bottle. I got a pump at about a week into it because I was producing a lot of milk and it would swell my breasts would hurt. I introduced the bottle shortly after that, but had my husband feed him with the bottle. I never had the nipple confusion issue. My baby is a very good eater and it is good to have a backup for times when I feel like my milk is low and he still wants to eat (I now feed the bottle as well) At two months and 13lbs 4oz he is growing big so it has been a good experience for me. I would say my keys to breast feeding are 1. Relax and let it come naturally, your baby will have a sucking instinct, if they don't latch at first let them play, be patient it will come 2. Don't be surprised if you have to pull over the car to feed a suddenly inconsolable baby (the breast works miracles) 3. have a bottle in a little cooler if you can for emergencies (I also carry a "working mans glass" to fill with hot water and heat the bottle it is AWESOME for holding heat and a good size to fit the bottle - not to mention any starbucks or other coffee place can fill it for you - they are on almost every corner where I live!) 4. Get 4-6 comfortable bras! They don't have to be nursing bras if they are not comfortable for you, comfort and fit are key! also cary an extra shirt for you if you are out and about incase of leakage. 5. Enjoy bonding with your baby! They get big fast!
runningesq runningesq 7 years
Thanks everyone for the great tips. I'm expecting in October and hope to breastfeed. My coworker gave me her Medala Pump in Style pump, so I'm already set on that -- just need to get new tubes. Any advice on WHEN to introduce a bottle if you want to both bottle AND breastfeed?
Baby10Boy Baby10Boy 7 years
I like the comments you've received so far, all good. I recommend seeing a lactation consultant first thing after the baby is born (my hospital had three and I was visited daily while I was in the hospital). I don't mean to discourage or scare you at all, but be prepared that it may not work out for you to breastfeed. I worked for 3 months with physical therapists (for him) and lactation consultants (for both of us) but it wasn't happening. He would get really upset and anxious and I was an emotional wreck. Up until just recently (he's 3.5 months now) I felt EXTREME guilt over not being able to breastfeed him. I pumped from the very beginning and so was able to offer him some nutrients fresh from mommy, but my supply was low so I had to supplement with formula. I've stopped pumping and he's exclusively on formula. This was AGONIZING to me. I'd never thought I'd have a problem with breastfeeding, and I didn't, the lactation consultants told me over and over again that I was doing everything right (talking to him calmly, not being anxious or tense during feedings, they deemed my nipples and breasts to be "perfect") but it was my son who would not take the breast. Part of this could be that as I recuperated from an emergency c-section he was fed from a bottle - at the time when the nurses asked permission I was too looped up on post-surgery drugs to care, my husband didn't know any better, and I was so concerned about my son getting what he needed that I just wanted him to be okay. So-all this to say that it's great to plan to exclusively breastfeed, that's what I'd been planning all along. But, go with it if it doesn't work out, you are still a good mom even if you can't breastfeed. I have found myself apologizing to people when they ask if I'm breastfeeding and have just now realized how much guilt I have for not being able to breastfeed my son. But, through hearing other mom's stories, the support of friends and family, and ultimately the great health of my son I've come to realize that I shouldn't be guilty about this at all - it's just one part of being a mom and now that that door has closed I can just focus all the more on the other things I can do for my son. Best of luck to you - you'll do great - pumping is fairly easy and I recommend taking your pump with you to your health care provider and having them show you how to use it.
MissSushi MissSushi 7 years
best tip, i think* is what i meant to say.
MissSushi MissSushi 7 years
These are absolutely great tips! The best tip is to ask for help, over and over and over, if you need to. I was constantly bugging them at the hospital, and i got a lot of really good advice. But that being said, this sounds REALLY important to you, and coming from someone who it was REALLY INSANELY important to, and wasn't able to, if it doesn't work out, don't knock yourself down. Don't obsess over it and don't get depressed about it. If you nurse at all, especially in the begining, you are doing your absolute best to give your baby a great start. I had 2 agonizing months with the first, and a month with the second where i blamed myself and was basically having panic attacks and depression bouts that I just didn't need to subject myself to. Whatever happens, is what happens, and your baby will grow up with your love and support no matter how it goes.
ladyalmalthea ladyalmalthea 7 years
If you can find a class, take it! And find a number for a lactation consultant or make sure the one at the hospital helps you find outside help. Do you have any friends that are breastfeeding? I found a breastfeeding support group I go to, another option can be La Leche league (although their parenting styles may vary a lot from yours.) There are a lot of things said about breastfeeding... *It does not come as naturally as it should. Ask for help. Whenever you need it. I didn't have my milk come in till the day I was leaving the hospital. *Formula is not poison.It will be OK if your child loses enough weight they want them to suppliment. Just keep getting the baby on you first, then suppliment. If they get formula, it is not you being a failure. It is you doing everything in your power to care for your child. My son got a couple bottles during my stay, and was eating like a champ when I got home- stress was a major factor for me. That being said, it is OK to avoid formula as much as you want, do not let people tell you the baby needs it for the vitamins or whatever. *Get a Boppy or Breast Friend, and take it to the hospital. *Breastfeeding can be stressful and painful. *Even if your baby only gets breastmilk a little while or only part of the day, you are doing better than many mothers that choose not to feed breastmilk at all, and good for you! *If you think you will be too embrassed to feed in public, trust me, it goes away very quickly. * I also found message boards on and that have helped me. Build a community of support around you before you have your baby! Congrats and best wishes!
starbucks2 starbucks2 7 years
I meant to say, don't let them give the baby a bottle in the first dayS...
starbucks2 starbucks2 7 years
I couldn't agree more with the previous posts. Great tips. I breastfed exclusively for 5 months and it was wonderful. It takes some getting used to, and it does hurt at first. But it's so rewarding! My best tip is just to not give up! Most women are able to nurse, if they have the right help and support system. Don't let anyone talk you into giving your baby a bottle in the first day! It's really important that you nurse a lot in the beginning to get the milk flowing. The milk will come and your baby won't starve until then. It's totally normal for them to lose a bit of weight in the first few days. And about the pump. Although high-end pumps are a lot better I had a cheapo one (like 7 bucks, it's basically a glass tube and a rubber ball) and since I only pumped 2-3 times a week it was completely fine. Congrats on choosing to give your kid a great start in life!
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