breastfeeding tips for new moms

Top 5 Breastfeeding Tips for New Moms

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My breastfeeding plan before I had my first child was to exclusively pump and then give the baby a bottle. I veered so far from that plan that I ended up breastfeeding my first child for 22 months. I wish I had done my research and read about someone else’s breastfeeding tips to get a true gauge for what I should’ve expected. That’s why I decided to write this post about the best breastfeeding tips for new moms considering breastfeeding.

how to breastfeed for new moms. The top breastfeeding tips all new moms need to hear.  Breastfeeding basics for new moms. Breastfeeding babies.

By the way, don’t ask why that was my plan! I had no idea how complicated pumping and returning to work would be, nevermind breastfeeding.

The first thing I realized once giving birth to my child was that all of my bashfulness went out the window. I was showing my breasts to every nurse that walked into the room. I mean c’mon, they already saw WAY more than that, so what’s a boob or two? There was no reason be shy because at the end of the day I wanted to make sure my child was receiving the nutrition my body was making for her.

I wanted to take some time to share with you my top breastfeeding tips for new mothers, because had I known these things beforehand, I would have had a much easier time.

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Nursing Tips for New Moms

Tip #1: Don’t get frustrated at the beginning. Breastfeeding is hard.

So much easier said than done, and frustration is bound to happen, but try not to let it get the best of you. Stress can actually hurt your milk supply. It takes a few days for your milk to initially come in, and it will feel like your little one is sucking on a breast that has nothing in it. You will wonder if the baby is getting anything.

You will worry about dehydration and lack of nutrition. This leads to incredible chafing and potential cracking of nipples that have never had this type of contact before. Your baby might need some help with latching like mine did. She latched okay, but her top lip was always sucked a little in so the nurses showed me how to flip it out to get her better suction.

It seemed like never ending stress at the beginning. But isn’t all of parenting like that? Trust me, you will get to a point where things don’t feel awful, and do get better.

Tip #2: Get a Nipple Cream.

Before the baby came, my mother joked that I better “toughen up my nipples.” I would laugh hysterically at the sound of that, but she was right. It goes in the column with moms advice that was actually true. So stop questioning your mothers! They went through this too.

By day 3 out of the hospital I couldn’t even stand to wear a top because the feeling of a shirt rubbing against me was outrageously painful. I resorted to a very soft bathrobe, because I guess I had to have SOMETHING on. One of the many trips I sent my husband on to the store was to buy a nipple cream. Nipple cream also has about a million other uses, so it’s not a bad thing to have on hand anyway. It offered temporary relief until the next nursing session, but it definitely helped me make it through.

I used Motherlove Nipple Cream and loved it. It was natural and organic, so I didn’t have to worry about the baby ingesting it at all.

Tip #3: Ask a friend for Help! Or better yet, a Lactation Consultant

By day four I was convinced I was doing it wrong. It seemed so painful that this couldn’t be the intended process for feeding a child. I had a friend from work who had breastfed two kids and had no problem coming over to help me out. Like my own little personal lactation consultant she showed up and assessed the situation. She said I was doing everything right, just had to be patient.

By the next day my breasts had fully adjusted to the feeling and I had no more pain. It has been smooth sailing ever since (mostly).

The best part of her visit is that she whipped out her breast in front of my husband to demonstrate the very many different ways to use the Boppy Nursing Pillow pillow. He was NOT expecting that! It made for a good laugh. IF YOU DON’T HAVE A WILLING FRIEND, CALL A LACTATION CONSULTANT. They are very helpful as well.

Tip #4: Try different breastfeeding positions

There are so many different positions you can nurse in. Try them all. Changing the position you nurse in helps stimulate different milk ducts around your breast and can relieve fullness in your breast and prevent clogs and mastitis (I learned this from a lactation consultant!). I was a fan of the standard cradle and cross-cradle holds, but could not master the “football” hold to save my life.

Laying down and nursing is also a great option, especially if you’re both tired. I refuse to let my children co-sleep with me (a personal choice), but sometimes in the early morning I will let them nurse back to sleep and get an hour or two in my bed. That is about the extent of co-sleeping I allow in my house.

Tip #5: Make sure you have a comfy seat!

You’re going to be in your chair A LOT, especially at the beginning. I had bought a friends glider second hand from her, but it ended up being terribly uncomfortable and squeaky. The last thing you want when you’re trying to soothe a baby is a squeaky chair.

Luckily for me, my husband got a new rocker-recliner for Christmas that year, and I quickly took it over. We both loved that rocker-recliner so much, when we moved into our new house we got another one! Now we are that super cute couple that has matching recliners!

ALSO…Next to your chair, or nursing locale, have a side table with a water bottle, snack, remote (if you’re near a TV), and nipple cream (as mentioned in #2). You might also want baby nail clippers nearby, because it’s a good time to try to get their nails clipped while they’re busy.

My son post-breastfeeding looking all adorable.
My boy looking so comfy 🙂

There are a million other tips I could tell you about breastfeeding, but each mother has a slightly different perspective and set of challenges. There are many aspects to breastfeeding, not just the feeding part. There are so many pros though when you compare it to cons, read about those here in my article called Breastfeeding Pros & Cons.

What are your best breastfeeding tips? Share with our new moms reading this post!

Get a FREE All-INCLUSIVE Breastfeeding & Pumping Checklist HERE.

Are you pregnant and wishing you had a planner to help you out? Check out the Oh Baby Pregnancy Planner!

Get all the Breastfeeding Advice you’ll ever need below:

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