Saturday, 12 March 2016

Breastfeeding | Things I wish I'd known the first time round

I am only 3 weeks into breastfeeding with Aria however compared to my experience with Sienna, I know it is going so much better this time round. I have already fed Aria a week longer than I did Sienna and I can see us still going strong in months to come.. fingers crossed.

I have mentioned before how brilliant the student midwife was when I was in labour and that she gave me some breastfeeding advice that I feel helped me so much. I wanted to share these tips and ideas to help anyone else that had a bad and painful experience the first time but wants to try again.

Here's the things I wish I'd known the first time round..



What makes a good latch
The midwife told me what to look for with a good latch and what to look for when it's a bad latch.
Good latch = Chin tucked into breast, mouth covers areola, lips are flanged out.
Bad latch = Chin barely touching breast, mouth barely open, lips curled in.

HOW to latch
1. Turn the baby on their side facing the breast you plan to feed from.. the baby shouldn't have to turn it's head, it should already be in position.
2. Line your nipple up with baby's nose.. this way they have to tilt their head back and open their mouth wide to get it which will give a better latch and get the nipple to the back and top of the mouth.
3. Wait for baby to open their mouth wide and then try to get a large amount of breast in so their mouth and lips cover most of your nipple.


If it hurts after a few minute, use your little finger in the corner of their mouth to break the suction and try again. The first few minutes of latching on will always hurt but then the pain should go, if it doesn't, keep trying to latch until it is painless.


Position can make all the difference
If you are having a lot of pain, try a different position. I can't do the normal 'cradle' style position as my boobs are quite large, it just puts her at the wrong angle on my nipple so it hurts. Swapping to the rugby/football position made it completely painless because the angle is right so position can really make all the difference!


Lansinoh is worth it
Lansinoh nipple cream is SO worth the money! I used cheaper nipple creams and balms with Sienna and they din't work as well. I also recommend putting it on after EVERY feed.. I still do this now. This has kept my nipples in good condition, they have felt sore a few times after Aria hasn't been latching well but they haven't cracked, blistered or bled like they did with Sienna making it so much easier and more enjoyable!


Cluster feeding is normal
Cluster feeding in the first few weeks is totally normal.. it doesn't mean you aren't making enough or they're not getting enough so don't worry or feel down about it! It is tiring but it will help your milk supply increase so that you are able to feed your baby in the future, so just go with it. Remember, 'this too will pass!'.


I'm really enjoying breastfeeding and finally understand how it can work and be enjoyable, not painful and a lovely bonding experience which I'm grateful for.



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