Find a comfortable place to feed your baby, allowing space for pillows to support your arms and to bring the baby level to your breasts. Position your baby so he/ she does not need to twist or strain to reach your breasts. Express some milk onto your nipple and touch your nipple to the baby’s lower lip. When your baby’s mouth opens wide, quickly pull your baby in to latch on. The nipple needs to be far back in the baby’s mouth. If you experience pain, break the suction by slipping your little finger in the corner of your baby's mouth between the gums and take the baby off the breast. Try again to latch the baby on, this may take several attempts.
Whenever possible offer both breasts during each breastfeeding session. Begin the next feeding with the breast with which you finished the last time.
During the newborn period, breastfeeding may take from 20-45 minutes. However, because newborn babies are often sleepy, this may require patience and persistence.
Babies need to breast feed at least 8-12 times in 24 hours the first few weeks in order to gain weight appropriately and stimulate a plentiful milk supply. After the first few days, you know your baby is getting enough milk if:
1. There are 4-6 wet diapers in a 24 hour period.
2. The urine is pale in color.
3. Stools are loose and change from black to mustard yellow in the first 5 days.
4. Your breasts feel softer after feedings
Continue to eat a well balanced diet high in protein and calcium. Drink whenever you are thirsty and rest when you can. If you have problems with breastfeeding, talk with your pediatrician about getting help.
Breast milk may be expressed into a clean, non-sterilized container and stored for up to 6 months in your freezer. Rewarming frozen breast milk under warm tap water or by exposure to room temperature provides a nice supplement to nursing.
Some medications are contraindicated (should not be taken) while a mother is breastfeeding. The list of these medications is frequently updated - please call our nurses or your obstetrician to ask whether your medication is safe with breastfeeding. In general, many seizure medications, all radioactive medications, stimulants, and illicit drugs should not be used while breastfeeding.