When I was expecting my son I knew I wanted to breastfeed. I did quite a bit of research on breastfeeding including talking in depth with my nurse and doctor, spoke with countless other moms and even took a class to educate myself and my husband on breastfeeding. I felt I was prepared but until you are actually trying to breastfeed a newborn you don’t truly know what to expect. Here are 5 things I wish I would have known about breastfeeding.
- Breastfeeding hurts.
Breastfeeding hurts; your nipples must adjust to someone sucking on them, but if you push through the pain within a couple of weeks your body will adjust. To help with the pain, apply lanolin to your nipples after every feeding.
- See the hospital lactation consultant as soon as you can.
As soon as possible after delivery request to see the lactation consultant. The lactation consultant will help you get off to the best start with your feeding techniques. Remember, the lactation consultants are the breastfeeding experts and will provide you with invaluable advice.
- Bring your nursing pillow to the hospital.
Bring whatever nursing pillow you plan to use while breastfeeding to the hospital with you. It is important that you feel comfortable feeding and by bringing this to the hospital you may be able to work with the lactation consultant to determine specific holds that will work for you and the pillow you will be using when you go home.
- Be patient.
It can take up to 5 days for you milk to come in but do not let this discourage you from breastfeeding. Your body is producing colostrum to provide your baby with the nutrients he needs.
- Be ready for the time commitment.
Breastfeeding is a time commitment but remember you will be feeding your baby the best nutrients available.
Breastfeeding my son for over a year is one accomplishment I am incredibly proud of. I know I provided him with the best nutrients possible, it created an incredible bond, and the time we spent together while feeding is time I will never forget. I hope these 5 things I wish I would have known about breastfeeding give you some helpful tips to help make your breastfeeding experience as positive and successful as possible.