We’ve backed World Breastfeeding Week (1 – 7 August) and our Midwives on our Postnatal Ward have offered advice to new mums that useful all year-round.
We know that breastfeeding isn’t always easy. It can be a bumpy road but there’s lots of information out there that can help.
No-one should feel pressured, but there are lots of benefits for your little one and you. During the first few days, it can sometimes be tough but it’s definitely worth persevering as you and your baby get to know each other.
Breastfeeding is a great way of bonding, it comforts baby while providing essential nutrients and immunity specifically tailored to your their needs.
It’s important for new mums to be comfortable while breastfeeding. Remember to use cushions or pillows if necessary and always ensure your little one is in a straight line, make sure their neck or head isn’t twisted and their back and head are supported, allowing movement.
It’s not always easy at the beginning; baby may be sleepy, you may be anxious and you both need time to get it working. The most important advice is to relax. It’s different for everyone and what might work for you, might not for another mum.
Here are some more top tips for new mums from our Midwives:
Start hand expressing during the last two or three weeks of pregnancy – getting good at it before baby is born gives you confidence.
If baby doesn’t latch on in the early days, don’t worry – stay relaxed, keep baby skin to skin, hand express, give baby colostrum and don’t be afraid to ask for help.
Expect to feed baby at least 10 times every 24 hours. If baby’s not latching, express and give your milk instead. This not only gives baby milk but increases your milk supply which is very important.
Your Midwife is always happy to help and support; by your side throughout your journey.
For more information about breastfeeding, more top tips and advice, visit the NHS website. The National Breastfeeding Helpline (0300 100 0212) is also a good place to get practical advice.