It is very important for you to get advice on breastfeeding and baby care during pregnancy, asking for some external help but which does not interfering with the mom-baby bond.
You need to feel supported, accompanied, listened to and comforted, taking into account the cultural, religious, ethnic, economic and other differences, and involving the father as from the beginning of the relationship, since he is the main support for your mom-baby bond.
How does it help you to have some knowledge on breastfeeding before delivery?
It is important, during pregnancy, for you to get familiar with your body, especially your breast, which could result in a better physical and emotional willingness to breastfeeding. Breastfeeding, in addition to nourishing your baby, is the best way to develop the mom-baby bond, and it is also a proof that you have an essential tool to love and care for your baby.
How can you start to get knowledge?
Take part in talks addressed to pregnant women.
Consult a child care expert to clear any doubts, fears and myths. Thus, you can help preventing anguish, uncertainties, misguidance and despair caused by generalized information.
You can check you nipples. Irrespective of their shape “all kinds of nipples serve to breastfeed an infant.”
Become familiar with the manner in which milk is produced, the importance of colostrum and breastfeeding positions. Specific and appropriate intervention in topics such as: breast congestion, breast engorgement, let-down of milk, sore and/or cracked nipples, etc.
When you pose a question, you want not only a technical answer on breastfeeding and upbringing, you also need tools to feel confident, and to be able to solve your problems on your own, being able to differentiate your own feelings and thoughts from attitudes and opinions of people surrounding you.
Demand physical contact with your baby after delivery.
Ask for help for the baby to take your breast.
Be aware that all kinds of nipples are good for breastfeeding.
Inside your body, the baby is not aware of food coming from a nipple, so it is important to make the baby aware of “your nipple” as soon as possible after birth.
You must take into account that you have to offer your breast quite often (you should wake the baby up every 2 hours during the day). Effective sucking, even though for a short period, assures that the baby, who has been constantly fed inside the uterus, can be able to maintain the weight at birth and start to gain weight.
Your colostrum is “good” because it is the food produced by your body for “your baby”; it is ideal and essential, since it provides the first immunization for your child. It has plenty of proteins and mineral salts, and it satisfies the nourishing needs of the baby’s little organs, not mature enough yet. Because of its properties, colostrum is also known as “liquid gold.”
In time, there will be normal changes in the production of milk and the frequency of sucking. The more you offer your breast, the more milk will be produced.
As a mom, you have your priorities, life experiences, beliefs and style as regards upbringing. You should feel free to make decisions and be able to say what you think, not fearing any criticism or judgment.
If you manage to get information during pregnancy, that would help you to have a safe beginning and you will be ready so that, in case not everything goes as planned, there is always a plan B.
If for any reason you decide not be breastfeed your child, you must be respected. The important aspect is the skin-to-skin contact, this routine practice as from the very beginning results in a good mom-baby bond, since it facilitates chemical and hormonal exchange processes. Regardless of the manner in which you feed your child, the skin-to-skin contact reinforces the loving bond, giving our baby you confidence, your smell, and your warmness, to nourish him or her emotionally.
What are the important elements to be considered for breastfeeding?
Basically, I would suggest the following elements:
Nipple protectors or shields
Other elements will depend on each mom’s needs.
BELKIS B. PONGETTI
CHILD CARE AND UPBRINGING UNIVERSITY DEGREE (TÉCNICA UNIVERSITARIA EN PUERICULTURA Y CRIANZA)
BREASTFEEDING AND MOTHER-BABY BONDING EXPERT