Breastfeeding can feel like a daunting prospect at first. From concerns about your baby latching on and properly feeding to worries about painful and sore nipples, breastfeeding might take a while to get used to. But, if you’re planning on breastfeeding or currently in the process, we’ve got some good news! Get ready to discover top breastfeeding tips to make this rather unique experience in your life as easy and comfortable as possible. From latching tips for newborns to freezing your milk to make feeding your infant easier.
Latching Tips For Newborns
If you’re searching for breastfeeding tips, you might be struggling to get your little one to latch onto your breast. Don’t worry, breastfeeding takes time to master, and latching might not always come easy. To help you both get to grips with breastfeeding, here are some top latching tips for newborns.
1. Ideally, try to have skin on skin contact when you give birth. When born, your baby’s natural instinct will be to climb up towards your nipples and start to nurse. Putting your baby on a blanket over your chest or if you have clothing on can disrupt this process.
2. Check if your baby is hungry by gently putting your clean little finger close to their lips. If the baby’s lips look a bit like a fish, and they try to suck, it’s dinnertime. Hold them to your breast with this chin first. They should naturally try to nurse.
3. When you feel a tugging sensation on your breast, they are nursing well. Watch to see if their lower jaw moves. This will indicate if they’re swallowing or not.
4. Help your baby by gently compressing your breast, replicating the shape of your baby’s mouth.
5. Breastfeeding shouldn’t be a painful experience, so if you feel nipple pain, there is likely a latching problem. Correct their position by gently putting your finger in the side of their mouth and try again.
6. Hear a clicking noise? Your newborn isn’t latched on, so gently try again.
7. Try not to get anxious or stressed out if your baby isn’t latching on properly. Your newborn can sense how you feel, so when you relax, they will too.
How To Maximize Your Comfort Levels
Breastfeeding a newborn baby can take 20 to 45 minutes, and you’ll likely need to do this between 8 to 12 times a day for the first couple of weeks of their life. So, to make sure you’re as comfortable as possible during this downtime, here are some top tips to maximize your nursing comfort levels.
1. Create a breastfeeding corner in your home. This is a relaxing space that features a comfortable chair or sofa, soft lighting, blankets, and reachable snacks, drinks, and entertainment for you. This helps you to feed your newborn baby without disturbing them because you’re bored or hungry. It’s also important to stay hydrated while breastfeeding.
2. Invest in a breastfeeding pillow. This specially designed pillow helps to elevate your baby to the right height for nursing and takes the weight off the arms, and avoids unnecessary strain on the back too.
3. Gift yourself comfortable and cozy clothing that will help keep you warm, relaxed, and comfortable while breastfeeding your baby for long periods of time.
Storing Milk & Nipple Cream
Some new moms like to make breastfeeding more convenient by using a breast pump and freezing their milk. You can freeze and refrigerate expressed milk as long as it’s stored in sanitized bottles or pre-sterilized nursing bags. This is also a good breastfeeding tip if you want to make the transition from nursing to bottle-fed.
For new moms concerned about sore nipples, an invaluable breastfeeding tip is to stock up on nipple cream made from ultra-pure lanolin. This is a natural product made from sheep’s wool and helps to soothe sore nipples as well as support healing. 100% baby safe, this moisturizing cream doesn’t need to be washed off before breastfeeding either and can also give your newborn a more firm surface to latch onto.
You can also buy cooling and heat-therapy pads that fit around the breast to provide pain relief and warmth to encourage milk flow. This is particularly effective when pumping and can make the process much easier.