Tips for Breastfeeding Success: The First Days

August 21, 2012

There’s no better time to start breastfeeding than the first time you’re able to hold your baby. Unfortunately, sometimes a mom can be overwhelmed with thoughts of what to expect and how to adjust to life with baby. So, try to relax and enjoy the first days of breastfeeding. Not only will it help you unwind from the excitement of delivery, but it will also help to prepare you for breastfeeding success.

Don’t stress about supply. When you first begin breastfeeding, your body will produce colostrum, a special type of breast milk, packed with healthy nutrients to support a strong immune system. Understand that a newborn’s stomach is incredibly small. So, when you’re getting started breastfeeding, your body will produce a small, yet adequate amount of colostrum to ensure your baby gets all the powerful nutrients to support healthy growth and development. As you continue to breastfeed and your baby grows, your milk will change and your supply will increase to benefit your baby’s needs. So, cherish the bond you’re developing and trust that your body is already growing more in tune with your baby’s needs.

Breastfeed (cuddle) often. By breastfeeding frequently immediately following birth, you’ll instantly begin to bond with your baby. Then, as you continue to breastfeed, you and your baby will grow even closer. You’ll find you feel more connected to your baby emotionally, and your body will react, too. As you cuddle and feed on demand, your body will further adjust to the appetite of your little one. For any mom, it has to feel wonderful to know you can support your breastfeeding goals, just by cuddling with your little one and breastfeeding often.

Ask for help. Breastfeeding is beautiful, especially during the early days after childbirth. However, don’t feel discouraged if you encounter some breastfeeding challenges. In fact, many hospitals have Lactation Consultants available to ensure moms have tools and education to address many of these issues. They will take the time to walk you through different nursing positions, help you establish a proper latch, and talk about ways to prevent common breastfeeding problems.

What made the first days of breastfeeding easier for you? Share in the comments below.

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