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PHILIPS AVENT: Breastfeeding Basics: A Survival Guide for New Moms

Breastfeeding, 0-3 months

As a mom, you’re usually the person your little one will turn to for answers. But what happens when you have questions of your own? This guide is designed to answer some of the questions you may have and to help you down an exciting journey so you and your little ones can reap all the benefits of breastfeeding. We’ll go over some of the most sought after breastfeeding tips. You’ll learn nursing positions, how to feed your baby, breast milk pumps and other feeding accessories – the essential things you need to know about breastfeeding. You can also discover the range of Philips Avent baby products to meet all your breast feeding needs.

Comfortable positions

The tips you received while attending maternity nursing classes were helpful at the time but are all forgotten when you’re actually faced with the task of breastfeeding on your own. We’ve covered some of the most popular feeding positions for your baby:

Cradle hold
In the crook of your arm, hold your baby with their head and body turned towards you. Some moms also prefer to place a pillow under their baby’s head as it makes it easier for them to feed.

Underarm hold
This position is also referred to as the Football Hold. With your baby’s feet pointing towards your back and head cradled in your hand, sit up with your baby tucked under your arm – just like you’re holding a football.

Lying beside you
If you’ve had a caesarean, this position would be ideal for you as your baby is able to feed without putting weight on your tummy. In this position, you simply lie with your baby alongside and facing you.

Latching on
Getting your baby to get good latch can be one of the most difficult feeding issues moms are faced with. Here are some tips to help you:

  • Instead of just the nipple, offer your whole breast so that there is more surface area
  • Rather than leaning your body towards your baby, raise your little one to your breast
  • You should not be able to see your nipple of most of the areola once your baby is properly attached
  • You should be able to watch and listen for your baby’s swallows and a slight pause with every gulp
  • While it might feel a little tender in the beginning, your feeds should be pain free
  • The Philips Avent Nautral Polypropylene Bottle with wide breast-shaped nipples promotes a natural latch-on, allowing you to seamlessly transition between bottle feeding and breast feeding

You can gently place your finger in the corner of their mouth and remove them from your breast if you notice that your baby has not latched on properly. By doing this early, you can help prevent damage to your nipples and creating any pain.

Letdown reflex

A hormone called oxytocin is released into your body when your baby suckles on your breast and when letdown reflect occurs. Oxytocin is known as the happy hormone but the role it plays in breastfeeding is instructing the milk glands to contract and eject milk. Some women will experience a slight pulling sensation in their breasts when they notice their baby’s suckling slows.

How long should a feed last?

Your breast storage capacity, the strength of the letdown reflex and your little one’s age and appetite are factors that will affect the length of a feed. Since everyone’s body and every baby is unique, some feeds may last for 10 minutes while others may take 30 minutes. While feed time may range, there’s no correct time that you should strive to feed for. A healthy growing and satisfied baby are better indications of a successful feed.

How frequently should I feed?

Rather than setting and trying to follow a specific feeding schedule, it’s ideal to let your baby feed whenever they want. This will allow you to establish a healthy supply of breast milk and understand your baby’s needs. In the first few months, babies will feed on average of 8-12 times, while some will drink as frequently or as little as 6 times per day.

The frequency and length will likely decrease once you’ve established a feeding pattern. This is the result of more confident and skilled feeds and your little one developing the ability to drink more milk in a single session. Changes in patterns of feed are normal due to growth spurts, separation anxiety, teething or simply a change in routine. As a result, your baby will feed more or less than normal.

Does it matter which breast I offer?

Offering feeds from both breasts will lead to a higher and more stable breast milk supply. Alternating the breasts for feeding is also a good practice in the event that one breast runs into trouble.

Keeping track of your feeds and alternating which breast you offer first will allow you to ideally switch between breasts. Before offering the second breast, it is ideal that you let your baby completely drain the first breast. There’s no need for concern if your baby is satisfied after feeding from one breast. Some babies may regularly feed from both breasts while some only require one.

Time for a burp

Burping your baby is essential to get rid of any excess air inhaled while feeding. The timing of when to burp your baby differs based on personal preference. Some mother’s prefer to burp at the end of a feed, while some mothers prefer to burp before offering the second breast.

Here are some tips on how to burp your little one:

1. Gently rub their back as you hold your baby on your shoulder.

or

2. Slightly tilt your baby forward as they sit on your lap. Gently rub their back with one hand, as the other hand is placed under their chin for support.

How do I know if I’m doing it right?

There’s no single correct way to breastfeed as it will differ from person to person. You may start to question your skills at breastfeeding and feel like you’re struggling but the reality is that you’re probably doing just fine.

Here are some signs you’re on the right track:

● While a little tenderness is normal, your feeds should be pain free
● Your baby is alert and growing as expected
● Your baby has regular wet diapers

Using a breast pump

A breast pump can be used to help with creating a breast milk supply for your little one in the event that you’re away or require help with feeding at night. There are many different breast pumps on the market from hand breast pumps to electric breast pumps. Philips Avent breastfeeding accessories can also be used to help you achieve a better feeding.

A final note

If you’re ever unsure of anything or require further breastfeeding tips, don’t be afraid to ask for advice. A lactation consultant or maternity nurse can answer any questions or worries you may have. They are also great resources if you have challenges with latching or positioning your little one.

Source: Philips Avent
The Philips uGrow App provides great resources and tracks the development of your baby, including feeding and sleeping patterns. Download the app for more great tips.

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