Every mom wants the best for their baby. Breastmilk is the best source of nutrition you can give to your precious baby. Successful breastfeeding is a top concern for many expectant moms. There are lots you can do to prepare yourself for breastfeeding. You can attend a prenatal class, a breastfeeding preparation class, buy the best breast pumps, indulge in those oh-co-comfy nursing tops and bras etc... BUT! Many moms are not aware that the first few days in the hospital post delivery can make a huge impact to the success of your breastfeeding journey. Get the best possible head start to your breastfeeding journey. Keep these 4 tips in mind!
Latching baby within the first hour of birth is important as you you are the ideal person to calm baby down and offer baby His/her first 'vaccination' with your colostrum. Colostrum helps stimulate baby's digestive system and offers immunological benefits to protect baby from infection. This early feeding does wonders for mother-baby attachment and bonding too.
Skin to Skin is important. Your newborn is not able to regulate his/her own body temperature well at this young age, hence they need skin to skin contact with their moms (or even dads) to regulate their temperature, respiration and heart rate. This hormone also helps with to promotes maternal behaviour.Moms who have skin to skin contact after birth are more likely to feel confident and comfortable in reading baby's feeding cues and meet babies’ needs. In addition, the important breastfeeding hormone 'Oxytocin' is produced during skin to skin contact. In fact, a study has showed that Oxytocin levels spike whenever the newborn's hand 'massages' mother's breasts. How amazing is skin to skin!
Requesting for baby to 'room-in'' with you is beneficial too. Let your nurse and hospital know that you will like to breastfeed exclusively and seek their help to stay on this track. You will learn to be familiar with baby's feeding routine and hunger cues when baby is so near you.
A good maternity hospital will have a lactation expert visit you while you are in hospital, they can do wonders in helping you establish a good latch or correct any latching mistakes at this early stage. Many hospitals also offer breastfeeding classes for new moms during their stay, go for it!
It is absolutely normal to feel exhausted and overwhelmed by your delivery and new baby. It may be beneficial to delay any hospital visits from too many people during your stay so that you can focus on recovery and establishing breastfeeding. My heart goes out to all new moms attempting to breastfeed. I encourage you to believe in your ability to provide the best nourishment to your baby. Stay positive and confident. You can do it!
If you need help with preparing to breastfeed or trying to establish breastfeeding post discharge, don't hesitate to seek professional help. Just give me a call or check out our classes at http://www.motherslovenc.com/booknutritionbreastfeeding