Getting Started Breastfeeding

Breast feeding is an art that requires patience and practice. No one expects either you, or the baby, to be an expert when you first start breastfeeding.

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When you finally get to hold your baby for the first time in the delivery room, you should put the baby's lips to your breast. Although your mature milk hasn't developed yet, your breasts are still producing a substance known as colostrum that is higher in fat and protein than your breast milk will be, and which helps to protect your baby from infections.

If your baby has trouble finding or staying on your nipple, no need to panic.

The Art of Breastfeeding

Breast feeding is an art that will require patience and practice. No one expects either you, or the baby, to be an expert when you first start, so you shouldn't hesitate to ask for advice or have a nurse show you what you need to do.

Once you start breast feeding, keep in mind that nursing shouldn't be painful. When your baby latches on, pay attention to how your breasts feel. If the latching on hurts, gently break the suction then try again.

You should nurse frequently at first, as the more you nurse the more quickly your mature milk will come in and the more milk you'll produce. Although each woman is different, breast feeding for 10 - 15 minutes per breast 8 - 10 times every 24 hours is an ideal target. Crying is a sign that hunger has actually occurred, which means you should actually feed your baby before he starts crying.

During the first few days, as tired as you may be, you may have to wake your baby to begin breastfeeding, and he may end up falling asleep during feeding. To ensure that your baby is eating often enough, you should wake him up if it has been four hours since the last time he has been fed.

Getting comfortable

Feedings can take 40 minutes or longer, therefore you'll want a cozy spot. You don't want to be sitting somewhere where you will be bothered, as it can make the process very hard. Many choose to prepare some specific cozy nook for the purpose of breast feeding.

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Page Updated 10:05 AM Saturday 10/31/2015