Everything You Need to Know to Master Breastfeeding.
So you've made the decision to breastfeed? Breastfeeding comes so many awesome benefits! If you’ve never breastfed before, you might think it’ll come naturally to you and your newborn. Baby is hungry, you offer up your nipple, baby latches on and sucks sweetly until he’s full. Easy, right? But what’s natural isn’t necessarily always intuitive (at least at first)—for either mom or baby. Nursing your baby isn't always an easy feat.
Luckily we talked to breastfeeding experts and moms who’ve experienced nursing challenges and rounded up the 5 best breastfeeding tips to help set you and baby up for success.
1. Get the Right Latch
This is KEY. If we don’t have the right latch, we end up with really sore and perhaps damaged and cracked nipples. There’s a TON of great resources online that will literally show you what the right latch looks like, but in a nutshell, it’s about getting the lower part of the breast and areola into baby’s mouth so that the nipple hits their high palette, which stimulates sucking.
2. Experiment With Different Breastfeeding Positions
One of the most important of the breastfeeding tips is to get the right latch, as we said in #1. As part of this, experimenting with different breastfeeding positions is key. In my opinion there is no position that is better than another. It's all about what works for you and baby. Here are a few different ones to try if what your doing now doesn't seem to be working well.
3. Get Breastfeeding Help Early
Habits form fast, so it’s VITAL to get the latch right at the beginning. (Don’t despair if you didn’t, as babies are adaptable.) Lots of moms can struggle with too fast of a let down, overproduction of milk or engorgement! These problems can be resolved easier when you address them right away. Getting help will benefit you and your baby immensely if you start off on the right foot and can avoid problems like clogged milk ducts which are no fun!
4. Count dirty diapers
The question moms most frequently ask: How do I know Baby is getting enough to eat? The number of wet diapers baby produces can be an easy sign she’s getting enough milk. “If mom is five days postpartum and has a full milk supply, she should be seeing a minimum of four to five urine- and stool-covered diapers a day,” Hawkins says. You can also bet baby is getting breast milk if your breasts become softer after nursing, you hear little swallowing sounds and baby looks satisfied.
5. Let your baby set the pace
For the first few weeks, most newborns breast-feed every two to three hours round-the-clock. Watch for early signs of hunger, such as stirring, restlessness, sucking motions and lip movements. Let your baby nurse from the first breast thoroughly, until your breast feels soft — typically about 15 to 20 minutes. Keep in mind, however, that there is no set time. Then try burping the baby. After that, offer the second breast. If your baby's still hungry, he or she will latch on. If not, simply start the next breast-feeding session with the second breast. If your baby consistently nurses on only one breast at a feeding during the first few weeks, pump the other breast to relieve pressure and protect your milk supply.
Whether you’re a working mom or a stay at home mom, it just seems like our jobs are never done. There’s always a room to clean, a meal to be cooked, or laundry to be done. Although those are all important things to do, it’s even more crucial to spend as much time as you can with your children because you just don’t get this time back.
We all need to get better at managing our time and organizing our lives in order to maximize the small amount of time that we do have. Whether it be spending a little more money for services that will help us, planning out your day better, or getting things done in advance, there are a few ways we can look at our days and see what small changes we can make to give us more time.
Here are my 5 favorite time saving hacks that require little effort but provide a big impact.
Have a schedule or routine for the day
Especially if you’re a stay at home mom, you can let the time tick away and hours get away from you. Before you know it, it’s 4pm and you didn’t get anything done you needed to because you wasted time watching reality tv and scrolling through instagram. Make and set a specific schedule for the day that you don’t let yourself deviate from. Set an alarm or stop watch on your phone/microwave/Alexa so you actually stick by these times for when to change tasks. Schedule the household chores out throughout the week. Otherwise you’ll be left cleaning a weeks worth of mess on the weekend.
Investing in some new bins or baskets or other stylish ways to update the house and get more organized is always a win for me. I buy all our decorative storage needs from Amazon because of their free returns. If you are feeling aggressive download our free 7-Day Declutter Guide!
Create freezer meals for the week
Most people like to use Sunday to do their meal planning and prepping. Make a schedule of your meals for the week with a list of ingredients. Prepare as much of these meals in the beginning of the week as you can so you’re not stuck in the kitchen for as long on weekdays. Try to make meals that overlap ingredients so you’re buying less and enlist the kids and husband to help out as well! This is a great time for your kids to start learning how to do chores and help out in the kitchen and if you have toddlers, they just love imitating mom.
Get an Assistant (well kinda!)
If you don’t already have one, go get one now! The Amazon Echo Show makes life so much easier for me and happier for my daughter. It can make phone calls for you or even VIDEO calls to other Amazon Echo Show Devices. Its a nice for catching up with family in a more personal way, You can add items to your shopping list and transfer it to the app on your phone, get the weather, traffic or even help you find a last minute recipe for dinner if you are in a pinch. It also plays music and videos which can often save my daughter from mini meltdowns. We just started using the Amazon compatible camera and I can watch her nap in her crib while I’m prepping freezer meals!
Get things done before the kids wake up
Committing to Waking up 30 min before the kids may be hard with a newborn but around 6 months if you’re having success with sleep training and baby sleeping through the night than this gets easier to commit to. I started this once our little one was starting to wake up around 6 or 6:30 versus the dreaded 5am wake up. I think its important that we all value our sleep, s.
The start of a New year means creating goals we're determined to hit in the new year. For most of us its a resolution centered around our body achieving the "perfect shape".
After having my daughter, it was easy for me to look at pictures of myself before and think, “Damn, who’s that girl. She Fine”. I found it easy to get consumed by the dislike of my body that I couldn’t bring myself to look in the mirror. I didn’t identify with the person I was looking at. I was stuck on thinking about what my body used to look like and the reality of how noticeably larger, loose and downright puffy it was now.
I know It isn’t easy, and it isn’t just a switch that can be turned on! You cant just hate your body one day and love it the next. I still have moments where I struggle with my body and wish and want things to be smaller, tighter, or less squishy! I still have moments where I look at myself and I’m not happy with what I see. I stop and am reminding myself:
My shape doesn't equal my worth.
This one is such a trap that women today fall into. So much insecurity and self-loathing and silent hate against the way they look, all because of the way their body is shaped, or how it’s changed, or how it’s simply not perfect anymore.
Pause for a moment and ask ourselves why does body image cloud our minds so much, when becoming a mom has filled our hearts so much? Lets take 2019 to follow our heart. The rest will fall in place
Strive for Progress. Not Perfection.
It took 9 months to get the body you have now. Cut yourself and your body some slack.
Many of us strive for the perfect mom bod, perfect body. Lets start with getting rid of the word “perfect”. So many of us spin the hamster wheel, striving to achieve the perfect body overnight. Lets set goals and strive for progress in in the new year instead.
Celebrate your imperfections - They tell a Beautiful Story
My body is full of stretch and curves I never had before. It is Full of love and yet full of self doubt.
Sure I have stretch marks and extra skin to show this experience. I also have fat. The fat preeclampsia piled on & never went away. I realize every body is different. Special. Powerful & with its own story to tell. They tell our unique story of becoming a mother.