Tips & How to Guides

How to Start Breastfeeding?

Breastfeeding is not as easy as it is supposed to be. You have to have a certain plan to feed your baby. It is very important to nurse the baby with a set plan. By following these plans, you can preserve the health of the baby as well as the mother. The mother must take enough care on her health before feeding the baby. More importantly, this has to be done because the baby’s growth and health are dependent upon her mother.

The milk from the mother must be healthy and digestible as the nourishment of the mother’s milk depends upon her diet and health. Proper exercise and inhaling pure air will also amount to healthy milk from the mother. Mother’s milk is the purest form of food that is available to a baby to which there is no other substitute. A mother’s indisposition will affect the baby’s health severely.

Any mother must not take any sort of liquor like wine or fermented liquor. Adding these to the regular diet of the mother will lead to diseases and will eventually lead to a complete halt of the secretion of milk. You can keep a simple diet which will aid the secretion of milk. Following the laws of good health will lead to healthy nursing of the baby by the mother. Do not resort to any sort of improper diet on a whim, even if it is for at least once.

In a case, a mother, who was also a nurse, had left the lying-in room after twenty-one days. She had problems with her nipples which she overcame quickly. The porter system was commenced, which was resorted to, not because deficiency of milk but that it was ample, and the baby thriving upon it. Having become a nurse, she was told that it was important to be done and without it her milk and her health would fail.

She often felt drowsy and sleepy in the day with headache, heat, thirst and fever. Due to all these, the secretion of milk got reduced and even more startling was that the stomach and bowels of the baby took a disorder. The porter was taken off and remedial measures were undertaken. The baby and the mother returned to normalcy after a while.

The porter systems or any sort of aid may deteriorate the health of the mother and consequently the baby. The patient, aforementioned, went into the lying-in room with good health and did not need any stimulant to produce milk. Her previous diet could not go well with her new diet plans and hence it gave rise to disease. The breast milk gets fully established in the second of third day until which the baby can be fed with thin gruel or one-third water with two thirds of milk with loaf sugar.

After the first three days, breastfeeding alone must be done and for the succeeding week or ten days, the baby will act as the mother’s guide on letting her know how often the baby feels hungry. The baby comes with a feeble stomach at birth but it has already had some food and hence it seeks to be fed often and digests the food often. The baby takes a short nap after the breastfeed but comes back within a while to demand it again.

You must breastfeed your baby at regular intervals of about three to four hours once during both day and night. This duration between sucklings allows for some time to digest the milk which keeps the bowels of the baby in normal condition. You can avoid your baby’s crying at night, if you feed the baby in regular intervals without fail. Sometimes, mothers miss out on feeding the baby in regular intervals as, at times; the baby’s appetite may grow stronger and demand milk in shorter intervals.

This can be considered dangerous for overloading the stomach of the baby will lead to lack of proper digestion. The baby’s bowels go out of order and the baby may even attract fever. The baby must not also have the mother’s nipple suckled during its sleep at nights which would lead to frequent demanding of milk. If breastfeeding is done in regular intervals, the baby will awaken only after the same number of hours to demand further milk.

At nights, you may feed the baby around 10 pm, and feed it again around 5 ‘o’ clock in the morning. If this is taught early, the baby gets accustomed to it and it results in all good for the baby and the mother. At the time of weaning, if secretion of milk does not stop, the baby can continue with its regular diet of being breastfed.

Benefits of Breastfeeding for Your Baby

  • Breast milk will give your baby the best possible start in life.  It has all the nourishment your baby needs.
  • Breast milk helps to protect your baby from getting infections and diseases such as: urinary tract infections
  1. Gastrointestinal infections e.g. diarrhea
  2. Respiratory conditions e.g. asthma
  3. Some childhood cancers
  • Breast milk also minimizes the risk of your baby developing allergies and food intolerances
  • As time goes by your breast milk  changes to suit the needs of your baby

Benefits of Breastfeeding for You

  • Breastfeeding helps you recover from childbirth more quickly
  • When you first start breastfeeding your uterus contracts and will return back to its pre-pregnant condition more quickly,
  • Breastfeeding can  help to reduce bleeding after childbirth
  • May assist with weight loss after childbirth
  • Breastfeeding reduces the risk ovarian cancer and premenopausal breast cancer  and osteoporosis
  • Breastfeeding reduces the risk for mothers with gestational diabetes of developing Type 2 diabetes

Other Benefits of Breastfeeding

  • No sterilising bottles and preparing formula
  • It is easy to take baby out on trips and not have to worry about packing a bag with formula and bottles
  • For night feeds it is less disruptive to your routine to simply breastfeed your baby
  • Your partner can be included in the process by changing baby and bringing him or her to you to nurse

Breastfeeding does not come naturally to everyone and may take some time to get it right especially when you first start. Breastfeeding should not be painful.  If you have concerns or experience difficulties with breastfeeding contact a breastfeeding trained health professional for advice and assistance.

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