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What can I do to get breastfeeding off to a good start?

There is no right way to breastfeed; how you get there is up to you! However, here are some simple tips to get yourself off to a good start!

 

  • Breastfeed early and often. When baby begins to feed, you begin making milk. During the first few weeks of breastfeeding is when you will establish your milk supply. 

 

  • Breastfeed 8-12 times per day. Nursing often assures your baby’s needs are being met, and this helps to bring in your milk supply. 

 

  • Watch the baby and not the clock. Too often mamas follow a strict 2 hour timeframe. Well, baby’s don’t always work like that. It is OK, and normal, for baby to nurse more often, or extend to 3 hours. If there is ever any concern, reach out to your clinic or lactation specialist. 

 

  • Be aware of hunger cues. These include sucking on their fist, turning their head, making mouthing movements, or smacking their lips. Crying is a late sign of hunger, and can sometimes make it harder for baby to latch when they are distressed. Catching baby early is helpful for an effective latch and feed!

 

  • Let the baby take the lead; allow baby to nurse as long as they wish on each breast. You do not have to stop the feed on one breast after a certain amount of time - they may miss out on some of the fattier milk (I like to talk about this in more depth during sessions!). 

 

  • Try to limit artificial nipples, bottles, pacifiers for the first few weeks, until baby has established a good latch. 

 

There are so many other topics that help mamas get off to a good start like skin-to-skin, positioning, weight and output expectations, and more! 

 

I personally breastfed my babies for 14 months each. Both were different experiences, ups and downs, times of exhaustion but also bliss. I’d love to work with you on your breastfeeding journey, to help you reach your goals! 

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