On my journey into motherhood and breastfeeding I found some great websites which I found extremely valuable and helpful. I have created some links in the menu section for you should you like to read up on anything in more detail, which include some really helpful videos too.
As natural and easy as breastfeeding felt to me, both my little girl and I managed to establish a good latch in the first week, which made breastfeeding an enjoyable bonding time for both us. Dr Jack Newman has some excellent advice and videos on how to get the perfect latch. Dr Jack Newman Breastfeeding Latch. As long as I helped my little girl achieve this by correctly positioning her to get a good latch, for it to be an enjoyable bonding experience for both of us. A good latch should never feel painful but if it does, release the latch and start again, by gently using your little pinky finger and pushing it into the corner of your babys mouth, to release the latch. Always make sure your hands are clean.
The first week was by far the most challenging, nursing a new born every two hours, was exhausting, as well a tender aching body, and all those emotions and hormones raging through your body again, honestly given 5 minutes alone to gather your thoughts can be overwhelming. No one said breastfeeding would be painful to begin with, while your nipples adjusted to their new role of nursing a baby! Breastfeeding takes patience and perseverance, a new skill, to be learnt by both mother and baby. I think I stood in the shower every night that week with tears running down my cheeks, crying, as I washed my aching body. Milk leaking from my breasts but I was determined not to let my cracked, painful nipples stop me from breastfeeding our little girl. I wasn’t going to let this get the better of me or give up.
A friend of mine is a breastfeeding consultant which was a great help whenever I had questions. She suggested I join Le Leche League, Le Leche League LLL an international breastfeeding support group, they also hold groups in your local area for support, as well as the online support group. Kellymom is also another great resource for breastfeeding support and information. KellyMom.com
I count my blessings every day, my mom arrived to stay for 2 months, 12 hours after our little girl was born. I couldn’t be more excited to share the beginning of our new journey with her. My mom nursed 3 of us, so it was easy to turn to her for any advice or questions I had but when she left I was on my own and knew I would need to find answers some where.
I’m very grateful for my mom and the amazing health visitor who were full of great advice and information. For example, a baby who falls asleep at the breast but still suckling is actually a good sign and should never be taken off the breast, as this is when they get the hind milk. The fattier, richer milk or as I used to call it, the full cream milk. The good stuff. Which helps them grow. Baby will come off the breast when they are done nursing. Something I never knew when I started breastfeeding. I have included a link to more information about foremilk and hind milk if you were interested in reading up more about it. Fore milk & Hind milk Breastfeeding
As enjoyable as breastfeeding may be and that special bonding experiment you get to share with your new little baby, it does come with its own share of challenges. Cracked, sore or bleeding nipples are just part of a whole new journey. Although this is quite normal the first week or two while your body adjusts to breastfeeding, it can be painful and challenging especially when you’re trying to nurse and your nipples are so sore and trying to heal but hang in there and stay strong. It gets easier and more enjoyable. I loved breastfeeding our little girl for the short 8 months I did. There are so many positive benefits to breastfeeding, as well as some really great products which I will share with you in my next post.
P.S To help with sore, cracked nipples I used Lansinoh nipple cream, before and after every feed to keep my nipples soft and supple. It’s amazing, I swear by this, I even use it on my lips in winter. You can also you silicone nipple shields to help give your nipples a chance to heal, or silver nipple shields. Silver has amazing healing properties for your body. After my first week of breastfeeding things were looking good and I was feeling positive about my choice to breastfeed and far more confident and happier.
Here are the links again to some of the websites I found some really useful information from, as well as support as mentioned in my post.
Le Leche League also known as LLL