I mean..there are so many titles for a breastfeeding post right!
I get inboxed often about Breastfeeding and wanted to answer a few questions and discuss my own personal BF journey.
I breastfed Sophia (my first daughter) for 16/18 months and now I’m breastfeeding my newbie Isabella who is 8 weeks. My second experience is far better especially in the early days and I think it’s simply because I know a little bit more and I’m far more informed. So I thought sharing a few things may mean others have a better experience 1st time round as there are so many things I wish I knew.
Despite opting to breastfeed I do not and will not ever use phrases like ‘breast is best’ because quite frankly fed is best. I truly believe happy mums = happy babies so it’s not fair to use statements like that. I will always be an advocate for breastfeeding as it’s a lifestyle choice I made BUT I will not tell anyone they are wrong not doing it. I do however feel people should be as informed and supported as possible to insure they make the right choices for them and their families.
So…now that’s out the way! I am going to start with a few things people didn’t tell me and I kinda wish they had and how to overcome them.
Latch on. Latch off.
Latching isn’t as easy for some babies (or mamas!) I originally felt like it was so natural and they just do it because that is what I was told and sometimes that is the case but not all the time. It also doesn’t mean in every circumstance that there is anything ‘wrong’ either but may need more encouragement and support. If you are in pain or it doesn’t feel right then reach out to a midwife / health visitor or breastfeeding support group and they will help you. You will have some lady probably touch your nipples and it may be slightly awkward but after birth it’s a bit like whatever.
After a few days of feeding Sophia I found my nipples were ridiculously sore (I am talking bleeding and all sorts) and it was simply because Sophia wasn’t latching properly. I reached out to a breast feeding support group and met a lady called Sophie who helped me get her to latch and after a few days of expressing to just let the ole nips heal we were well on our way and suddenly it was painfree.
Protect them nips!
Kinda follows on nicely from the last paragraph. Your nipples will take a beating and will feel like they are on fire. They may bleed or crack too and as much as this may seem like putting people off – I hope I don’t. It’s just I think people should be informed and if someone had told me this before trying to feed Sophia I would of handled it far better as there would of been a level of expectation. I had NO idea about this with Sophia and it lasted so long. I remember crying and refusing to feed her and finally got hold of some nipple cream and all was well with the world after a few days. A lot was because she wasn’t latched properly (so many sure you look at point one!) This time round with Isabella I slathered on that nipple cream the second I was pregnant. (Ok slightly exaggerated but I did start when I was around 32/34 weeks) but as soon as she had her first feed when she was born I started applying the cream. I certainly agree with the phase ‘prevention is better than cure’ and although I still did go through a sore nip phase it was only for a few days and because I knew what was coming I was far more prepared!
The nipple cream I used was the breast balm from Kit & Kin. Click here to shop.
I came learn from my awesome breast feeding support worker (Sophie) that there were multiple positions you could feed in!! Yea I know? WTF. I always thought there was only the traditional baby across front but having a C section I found various other positions so much more comfortable.
I would recommend following the incredibly @littlepeachlondon on Instagram who has LOADS of videos, highlights and info about positions to breastfeed including laid back, football hold and laying down.
I didn’t have any issues with Milk supply with Sophia and was fortunate to literally produce what she drank and then an excess which I pumped and froze. I didn’t have this from the beginning with Bella and really struggled to pump any milk. I knew she was getting enough as she is piling on the lbs but I just couldn’t seem to get any when using a pump so I asked for recommendations for Lactation snacks and cookies and ended up getting Mothers love cookies from Instagram/Etsy and NO joke they are sooo tasty. The s’mores brownies…oh good lord. They are amazing.
I certainly saw the difference in my milk after a few days of eating the cookies (I had two a day) and now have the brownies. They are recommended at 1 per day but when you get them you will know why I am eating like 3 a day LOOOL. There is also a flyer that comes with each other explaining what ingredients support milk production and why.
Pump. Pump. Pump it up.
I decided on an electric pump and managed to get a Madela breast pump single swing in their sale. It is currently £144 however I purchased directly on their site for £99.99. I would sign up to the mailing list and certainly shop around as you can get them cheaper elsewhere.
Although, after leaving it at home once when staying with my in laws I popped on amazon and bought a quick silicone handheld pump and it does exactly the same as the Madela is not better and is easier to take around (because there is no sound and no plug in needed)
I purchased the Nature Bond and after using it a few times went ahead and ordered two more, I left one at my in laws for whenever I need and have one in my changing bag and one at home! You simply squeeze it to suction on your breast and it draws out the milk. I use it every time I feed on the opposite boob to catch any “let down” (leaking breast milk) and have been collecting between 2-4 oz per feed which would normally just be absorbed by a breast pad.
Quick note – Prior to the mother loves cookies snacks I was only drawing 1-2oz
These are the main things that I get asked and I wanted to share. Other little tips I think are worth knowing are the following:
- Always have a drink on hand! You will be so thirsty so take a bottle of water or squash with you everywhere including to bed at night.
- Muslins – I always have some on hand when feeding whether at home or in public. Mainly to catch any milk fountain squirts lol and any sick. I also use them for discretion – now I use this term loosely as I do not cover the baby’s face or head or body AT ALL when feeding but do cover my breast for my own comfort when out in public or with friends and family.
- For quick easy breastfeeding friendly clothes I wear a vest top under a baggy top or regular top so I can lift my top layer and pull my under layer down and can have my stomach covered etc whilst feeding.
- Nursing bras are so great and I purchased and wear some I got from mothercare which are really supportive but also functional. Click here. I have stopped wearing underwire as find this uncomfortable and still find I need to wear something at night to hold breastpads and for comfort so have been wearing some cheap crop tops/sports crop tops from Primark at about £4 each.
I appreciate that is so long and probably a bit too much info but I am hoping it has been helpful for some.
Thanks for stopping by x
The Fat Funny One x
P.S Never forget a fed baby is a happy baby so do what is best for you!
** This is not an ad and not sponsored by any of the companies featured. None of the links are affiliate links.