Breastfeeding is a great way to bond with your new baby, and it offers many health benefits for both you and your child. However, it can be a difficult process that requires a lot of practice to get just right, so here are some tips to help you along the way.
1. Find Your Focus
If breastfeeding is a new experience for you, it will likely take some practice to get the hang of it. Find a quiet place where you can concentrate on what you’re doing and try to avoid anything that could be a distraction for either you or your baby.
2. Make Yourself Comfortable
You might be in this position for some time while your baby feeds, so find a pleasant position to sit in and support yourself with pillows if needed. Being comfortable will also help you relax, which can lead to a smoother experience all around.
3. Maintain a Healthy Diet
As in pregnancy, your baby relies on you for his or her nutrients. Be sure to eat a balanced, vitamin-rich diet full of fruits and veggies, and stay well-hydrated. Taking prenatal vitamins is a good way to provide vital nutrients to breastfeeding infants, so your doctor may advise you to continue taking them as you breastfeed.
4. Practice Self-Care
Breastfeeding can be tough on your nipples, leaving them cracked and dry. “Lanolin cream or any other nipple cream of your choice will be extremely helpful. Simply apply some to your nipples each time you finish breastfeeding for relief,” says Weslei Rice, MD, family medicine physician at St. Joseph Health Primary Care Bryan.
5. Prepare for Leaks
Leaking breast milk is a natural thing that might happen to you. If it’s a common occurrence or something you’re worried about, you can place nursing pads in your bra for some peace of mind.
If you’re pregnant or would like more information on breastfeeding your newborn, get in touch with the experienced team at St. Joseph Health or register for our next Breastfeeding Course. We can provide the resources you need to ensure you and your baby’s health can thrive.
What to Expect | 9 Things to Know About Breastfeeding Your Newborn
What to Expect | Basics and Tips for Nursing Your Baby