We have compiled our top tips for breastfeeding after having the privilege of supporting hundreds of women to breastfeed.
Did you know a stress free breastfeeding journey begins before your baby is born? Please take a few minutes to read our guide so you have all the tools you need to make the best possible choices for your baby and you.
Did you know that both your labour and birth can greatly affect your breastfeeding journey?
Be informed about pain relief
To make an informed choice on pain-relief, make sure you research your options. Opiate pain relief such as diamorphine and epidurals can affect your newborn by making it sleepy, thus delaying the very important first feed in the Golden Hours after birth. They may also delay your milk coming in. There are many options for pain relief so discover what is best for you both.
Avoid unnecessary interventions
If possible, it is best to avoid unnecessary interventions during birthing. Discuss with your care provider any procedures such as ‘sweeping your membranes’ or induction and ask the benefits, risks and alternatives to these. It is important to understand that unnecessary interventions may increase the need for pain relief.
Immediately After Birth
As far as possible, protect the golden hours after your baby is born. Often in a hospital setting it can feel rushed so here are our top tips to help you:
- Skin-to-skin. Hold your baby on your chest and in your arms immediately after birth. This has physical and emotional benefits for both your baby and you.
- Avoid routine procedures, e.g. weighing of your baby. Instead, prioritise skin to skin.
- Ensure only you touch or hold your baby – your partner may hold your baby too but it is best to avoid visitors particularly in the early hours after birth.
- Look at and observe your baby in your arms and watch your baby breastfeeding. This increases the oxytocin level in your bloodstream.
Your new baby will naturally and instinctively move towards your breast when it is having skin-to-skin with you.The correct poisoning and latch is important and the first feed may take a few hours to complete. The rich colostrum is full of goodness for your baby and will soon make way for your breastmilk to come in.