I have to say breast-feeding is hard. I am one of the lucky ones who had enough support and motivation to be able to nurse my children without TOO much pain, but really learning to breastfeed in a society where you have the baby then are isolated from society for six weeks is really not conducive to learning such a vital skill. Yes it is natural, but it is not easy.
If you are breastfeeding and need some help or advice I HIGHLY recommend seeking out a La Leche League leader or a lactation consultant in your area. They are an invaluable resource (and usually free) to help answer any of your breast-feeding questions.
My favorite book about breast-feeding is La Leche League’s “The Womanly Art of Breast Feeding” (affiliate link). I can not recommend this book enough! I have bought numerous copies for friends, and you can get them used on Amazon for a very good price with 2 day shipping.
Surround your self with supportive people and breast feeders. I promise you are not the first person to have cracked nipples, engorged breasts, worried about producing not enough milk, etc. Your concerns are valid and there are people out there that are experienced breast feeders who can help you.
If you do not have any people in real live close to you who breast feed you can reach out to online communities. Some of my favorite Facebook online communities are The Leaky Boob, The Badass Breastfeeder, Mama Birth, and you are always welcome to come ask questions or for support on my Facebook page.
On that note, one of the biggest issues I hear from a lot of woman is that they do not think they are producing enough milk.
Here are a few guidelines to see if you are indeed producing enough milk for your child.
- How often are you feeding your baby? I am a very firm believer in feeding the baby on demand. Did the baby fuss, cry, or chew on his hand? Give him the boob. If there is any problem at all my first response is to nurse. Babies know when they are hungry and will eat until they are full so do not worry about having a chunker. Nursing on a schedule and teaching your child not to listen to their own bodily cues will cause more weight problems later in life.
- According to kidshealth.org
“Your newborn should be nursing eight to 12 times per day for about the first month… Frequent feedings also will help stimulate your milk production during the first few weeks…Before your milk supply is established, breastfeeding should be “on demand” (when your baby is hungry)”
- Can you hear your baby swallowing when they suck? Is baby making audible sounds while nursing? Swallowing means they are getting milk to drink, this is a good sign.
- Is your baby having enough wet diapers? New babies should have 5-8 wet diapers a day.
- Is your baby alert, active, appears healthy, have good color, firm skin, and is growing in length and head circumference?
Remember that breast-fed babies tend to lose weight during their first week of life. This is normal so don’t freak out. Make sure your pediatrician is supportive of breastfeeding moms and will provide resources for you to be successful. If their first advice is to supplement, I would look for another provider.
So you think you need to boost your breast milk production after all of this great info?
Yesterday I posted a formula on how to increase your milk supply using Essential Oils. Today I will give you my favorite nursing mamma tea.
This tea helps boost your milk production on a few levels. It is highly nutritious helping rebuild the nutrients you lost during pregnancy and child-birth. It also includes galactogogues (milk promoting herbs) to help increase milk supply. So this tea both nourishes your body, and in turn your babies, and increases your milk production.
Mamma’s Milk Tea
- 1 C Nettle Leaf
- 1 C Red Raspberry Leaf
- 1/2 C Fennel Seed
- 1/2 C Blessed Thistle
- 1/2 C Oat Straw
- 1/4 C Alfalfa Leaf
- 1/4 C Dandelion Leaf
- 1/4 C Fenugreek
- 1/4 C Anise Seed
Are you breast-feeding? Did you have a good support system in place? Did you have any problems you had to overcome? Where are some of your favorite resources for nursing mammas?
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This link is an affiliate link which means I get a small commission from what you order at no cost to you, kind of like a tip for good service, which helps me pay to maintain this blog. You do not have to order from the link, but I would appreciate it.
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