Your new-born baby suckling at your breast – there is no joy greater than this sight. But let me tell you, that’s not always the case. Many new mothers or lactating mothers experience discomfort, sometimes fierce pain while breast-feeding their newborn which makes the whole activity quite dreadful.
In the initial days, my tiny baby had trouble latching onto my breast and when she finally would, she would suck so fiercely that I would cry out in pain. I remember how my nipples were sore and I dreaded nursing her. I even ignored her cries till someone took the wailing baby and gave her to me in my hands. And then I felt guilty for being a bad mommy. Because breast milk is essential for a newborn health.
I tried a nipple-shield but it wasn’t that convenient, and after a few trials, my baby and I, both lost patience with it. Many a times during that period, I even considered weaning her off and giving formula to her. Something so joyful for a new mother had become a nightmare for me.
Here are 10 breastfeeding tips for first time mommies who are having difficulty in breastfeeding:
- Try a nipple shield. It is a silicone mould that you put on your nipple while nursing your child.
- Rub a little petroleum jelly on your nipples after nursing and especially if you have developed cracks on them. Rubbing your own milk helps too.
- Eat healthy and nutritious, so you get adequate milk supply.
- Drink a lot of water. Staying hydrated helps in easy milk flow.
- Try different positions and zero in on one which is the most comfortable for you.
- Lie down and nurse. It’s a more comfortable position. However, avoid nursing lying down when you are sleeping for fear of smothering the baby in your sleep.
- Wear nursing bras or nursing friendly clothes. It’s easier and convenient to nurse in them.
- Invest in a good electrical breast-pump. It’s faster, convenient and less painful. It’s better than writhing in pain, sitting for hours together.
- It takes time. It took me and my little pumpkin one month to get comfortable in breastfeeding .
- If nothing works, think about giving formula to your child. Remember, a well fed baby is more important than a baby who doesn’t get adequate mother’s feed.
So how was the breastfeeding experience for you? Was it all smooth or a little bumpy? Do share. Would love to hear some breastfeeding tips from you.