Breastfeeding can benefit your baby, but it can be unsafe if you’re a first-time mom. It’s a learning process for you and your baby.
Some discomfort may be inevitable, especially at first.
Getting help, taking care of your mental health, drinking enough fluids, eating healthily, and taking care of your breasts are all important when breastfeeding. Here are five tips to consider.
1. Don’t be Afraid to Ask for Help
You may have many questions when you start breastfeeding for the first time. How do you hold your baby so both you and the baby are comfortable?
How do you encourage the baby to latch on and feed? How do you know if the baby is latching on properly?
How do you remove the baby from your breast when you finish feeding? You may often feel tired, frustrated, and in need of answers.
These questions are widespread; you don’t have to figure this out alone.
Primary care providers can help to check your health and answer your questions. Concierge MD, UW Medicine, Iora, and Transcendent Care offer at-home primary care visits in Seattle and other areas.
Most of the service providers give you the facility of telemedicine, which means you can get an answer to your desired question through video or phone calls.
2. Stay hydrated
When you’re breastfeeding, you need to drink plenty of fluids. Water, milk, broths, herb teas, and soups are all good liquids to drink.
You must avoid drinks and juices which contain extra amounts of sugar. It will help to drink a glass of water every time you breastfeed.
You must drink more if your urine is dark yellow, as it should be pale yellow. Fatigue and dizziness are the two main symptoms of dehydration.
Limit caffeine intake to two to three cups, as it could agitate your baby and interfere with sleep. Don’t feed for at least two hours after drinking alcohol.
There is no level of alcohol in breast milk that is safe for a baby. You could consider pumping breast milk before drinking it on a special occasion to feed the baby.
3. Eat a Healthy Diet
When breastfeeding, you need to fuel yourself to feed your baby. You can regulate your blood sugar level if you eat a balanced diet rich in vegetables, whole grains, and fruits.
It is also helpful to prevent you from craving food rich in sugars or fats.
Breastfeeding can burn up to 300 calories a day, so it’s not the time to try and restrict your diet.
You should choose nutrient-rich snacks, such as whole grain bread with a tablespoon of peanut butter, yogurt, or a medium apple or banana.
If you note that something is affecting your baby’s health, you should take a brake of some weeks to check the difference.
If you suspect something in your diet is affecting your baby, try to avoid it for up to a week and see if this makes a difference. Babies may react to garlic, cabbage, or onions in your diet.
Read More: How To Lose Weight While Breastfeeding: A Complete Guide?
4. Take care of your breasts
Nipple pain and incorrect latching are joint when trying to breastfeed. Relief may be a matter of making some minor adjustments.
Simply changing position may help your baby to latch on better. You must let the baby’s chin lead first into your breast so the head tilts up.
This opens the mouth wider and makes correct latching more likely. The mouth should cover as much of the areola as possible with the nipple further inside the mouth.
Some tips for breastfeeding pain relief include applying a breast ointment and letting your nipples air out after feeding.
This can help with cracked nipples. If your breasts are engorged, you can apply cold compresses to help relieve soreness.
You may suffer from mastitis if you feel painful symptoms like flu or a rash. This can happen when milk builds up in the breast.
The treatment is to take antibiotics and continue breastfeeding, which will resolve it in a few days.
5. Get Enough Rest
To whatever degree possible, you need to get enough rest. You must try to sleep when your little one is sleeping. You should ask your husband or family to care for your baby while sleeping.
You are unable to sleep when your little one is sleeping, and in this situation, you should do what makes your happy, like:
- Listening to music
- Watching tv as long as you get some rest.
If you don’t get enough rest and your stress levels are high, your baby will sense it, and your milk production can diminish. One of the most common problems that nursing mothers face is that exhaustion affects milk production.