Breastfeeding Disclosed!

If you are keen on giving your baby the best of everything, your milk is one of the most valuable things you can offer. Breastfeeding your baby means giving your little one the best immunity you can. Mother’s milk provides excellent nutrition. It gives them a balanced meal, all in one feed! There's no better way of bonding with your baby. It costs nothing, and is hassle-free - no bottles, sterilizers and equipment to manage.

Breastfeeding is good for you too

 Breastfeeding has numerous benefits for your baby but did you know that it also has many for you?

  • Breastfeeding helps you bond with your baby in a way that nobody else can. It seals your unique bond as mother and child.
  • When your baby suckles, it releases oxytocin hormone which helps to contract your uterus, getting you into shape much quicker than if you were not feeding in the early days.
  • Breastfeeding is easy on your pocket - it’s free!
  • You have less stuff to handle or carry around – no bottles, formula, or sterilizing equipment.
  • Wherever you go, your ‘feeding equipment’ travels with you. You don’t have to worry about carrying feeds.

Although breastfeeding has been considered to be contraceptive, it is not a foolproof method.

You’ve probably seen women sit down, whip out the breast and feed their baby without batting an eyelid. They might even be reading or talking on their mobiles! But, simple as it looks, breastfeeding is no piece of cake. It takes a lot of patience, determination and love to start off on the right foot. It may take days or weeks for both you and your baby to get smoothly into the groove of things.

The first few days

Once your baby and the placenta are out, your body’s levels of progesterone and estrogen hormones drop dramatically. Instead, prolactin (the hormone which gets the lactation process going) takes over. When your baby suckles on your breast, a hormone called oxytocin is released which triggers ‘let down’ and then the milk starts flowing. Oxytocin is often called the hormone of love because its release is associated with warm, fuzzy experiences like when you’re in love and suckling. As your baby suckles, your milk will start flowing. Fortunately, there’s a direct relationship between demand and supply; the more you feed your baby, the more the supply you shall make for the baby .

What are some tips to getting started with my breastfeeding journey?

Although it is the most intimate bonding experience with your baby, breastfeeding can be a frustrating experience until you get the hang of it. Here are a few ideas to get the process going:

  • Initiate breastfeeding within the first hour post birth. Start feeding as early as possible – even when you are still in the delivery room. Babies have a strong sucking reflex soon after delivery.
  • Initiate skin-to skin as frequently as possible.
  • Practice makes perfect - so make sure you have as much time as you can together to keep at it.
  • Make sure that the staff at the hospital or birthing centre you are in know that you are keen to breastfeed so that they can guide you to feed your baby
  • Feed on demand so that both you and your baby get used to it.
  • If your baby falls asleep while feeding, gently stroke the cheeks or tickle the soles to wake them up and prod them back into feeding.
  • Get some support. Breastfeeding is something which only you can do, but your partner, the hospital staff or professional lactation consultants can help you latch the baby on and to stay on the task.
  • Stay relaxed and be patient. It may take time but it will happen.