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Breastfeeding: First Steps

Breastfeeding: First Steps

During the first weeks, the process of milk formation will depend on the level of specific hormones: prolactin, a hormone producing milk, and oxytocin, a hormone, is donated milk produced. The production of prolactin is started from the moment of delivery, and this becomes the beginning of lactation. Prolactin has one peculiarity: its greatest amount is produced in the process of sucking the baby’s breasts and at night, therefore frequent feedings and nighttime are very important.

Oxytocin reduces the uterus to restore its condition, and also opens ducts inside the mammary glands. Strengthened portions of oxytocin are released in the process of sucking.

It is not by chance that oxytocin is called “the hormone of love”: it actively works when feeding, gentle touches and thoughts about baby. But the stresses, pain, frustration of his mother “frighten” him, and he is blocked, making it difficult for milk to flow out.

Any, even the youngest and most inexperienced mother can breastfeed a baby, and the way a baby is born does not affect the possibilities of breastfeeding.

  • If you didn’t have colostrum at the end of your pregnancy, or there was little of it, this is not an indication that you will not have milk!
  • If you have a small or, on the contrary, very large breasts, flat or large nipples, this does not mean that you will not be able to feed.
  • If your mother and grandmother are not breastfed, this does not mean that your baby should become an “artificial artist.”

In the first days after birth, mom produces colostrum, a yellowish translucent liquid that looks very different from our usual white milk. Colostrum may begin to stand out during pregnancy. During the first application, the baby will receive about 2−5 ml of colostrum, but these drops are invaluable: they contain a concentrate of immunoglobulins, which are “inoculated” from many infections, as well as special substances that help the colonization of the baby with the “right” microflora.

In the first days it is produced little, from 10 to 30 ml, but the baby doesn’t need more: it is very fat, three times more caloric than breast milk, it has five times more protein, vitamin A and salts. This amount of colostrum in the first days of the baby is enough, while his digestive tract will work in full force.

Colostrum is produced the first two or three days, gradually being replaced by transitional milk – it is less calorie, whiter, less protein. Gradually, by the third – fifth day, there is a feeling of milk tide, and the chest is poured.

This is the appearance of mature milk, which will saturate the baby further.

For successful breastfeeding is important right maternity hospital. Ideally, this should be the BDR (child-friendly hospital) – the maternity hospital, in which they in every possible way support and encourage breastfeeding, and hence the joint stay of the mother with the baby. Such maternity hospitals support the 10 breastfeeding principles developed by WHO / UNICEF.

These features are very important for establishing lactation from the first hour.

If there is no MDD in your region, you can arrange breastfeeding in a regular hospital, you just need a little more effort. For a more active and rapid development of lactation, the first attachment is still important in the delivery room.

In BDR-maternity hospitals, this is always practiced, and in a regular maternity hospital, you can ask the staff to help attach the baby to the breast after childbirth. In addition, it is very important to be together with the child, to feed him indefinitely and for a long time.

These are the first nutritious droplets of colostrum for the baby and lactation stimulation for the mother.

Breastfeeding: First Steps

It also happens that the first attachment to the chest in the labor hall was impossible. Then urge the staff not to feed the mixture and not to feed the baby if he is taken to the infant ward, or to help you put him on the chest as soon as possible after the birth. This is your child, and it is your right to decide how and what to feed him.

Usually in the BDR maternity hospital there are nutritional counselors who help mothers in breast attachment issues, train breastfeeding, answer questions. If there is no such thing on the staff, you can ask the nurse’s nursery or midwife for help – they all have to teach the young mother how to put her baby on the breast.

With the majority of planned caesarean sections, which are performed today under epidural anesthesia, the first attachment to the chest is quite possible. This is done immediately after the birth of the baby right in the operating room.

In addition, modern methods of surgery can reduce the time of stay of the mother in the intensive care unit, and after 12 hours, she can be transferred to the postpartum ward. It is important that the baby is not fed by anything, while he is separated from you. Colostrum in the first days after birth in the breast is very small, but its energy value is so high that it covers all the nutritional needs of the baby.

The baby does not need any additional food, otherwise the nature would provide for it. So those few milliliters of colostrum, which he will suck out in the first two days of the day, are enough to satisfy his needs.

Not all maternity hospitals practice the joint stay of mothers with children after their birth. The most important thing in this matter is that the baby in the children’s department is not fed with the mixture or not given some water.

Breast surrogates (bottle nipples, pacifiers) and milk substitutes violate the realization of the suckling of the breast set by nature, spoil the correct grip and sucking mechanism, forming a false installation in the baby’s head: they teach him not to suck the breast, but the nipple. This is dangerous because the mechanism of their sucking varies, like drinking water from a mug and through a straw. “Sucking sucking” involves the muscles around the crumb’s mouth, while sucking the breast is the muscles of the entire face, down to the cheeks.

The baby sucking only the breast captures most of the breast (the areola is a dark circle near the nipple), and the nipple is only a guide for him where to apply. The nipple-sucking baby will “move down” on the nipple of the mother’s breast, giving her pain and poorly emptying the breast. In addition, the baby fed the mixture or watered with water, when the mother is brought for feeding, the breast will not be taken – he will sleep.

This will have a bad effect on breast stimulation, delay the arrival of milk and may lead to painful engorgement of the mother’s breast.

Sometimes babies are born earlier, painful or weak, they cannot suck themselves, and cohabitation becomes impossible. In this case, you need to learn how to decant, and then transfer your milk to the baby in the pediatric ward, so that your milk will be fully or at least partially fed.

In this case, a breast pump and regular, every 2–3 hours, decanting of each breast, including at night, is necessary. This will help maintain lactation at a certain level.

Breastfeeding: First Steps

In the BDR maternity hospital, breastfeeding consultants usually show and tell how to do it, and in case of difficulty they help to attach the baby to his chest in any position – lying, sitting, standing, if only both of you are comfortable.

But if you do not have counselors in the maternity hospital, you can contact the medical staff for help or try to do it yourself. First of all, it is important that you and the baby were comfortable, otherwise breast feeding with a numb neck, lower back and arms can hardly be called a pleasant treat.

Yes, and the baby in an uncomfortable position will behave restlessly and it will be bad to take the breast. First of all, sit comfortably: sit down, and if you are temporarily unable to sit on the crotch because of the seams, lie down comfortably. Now think for how long you will stay in a similar position.

If you lay your elbow under your head while lying down, you will be uncomfortable; put a pillow under the head and neck (but not the shoulder) and relax. The neck should not be tense.

If you sit, your back and shoulders should be folded back (you can put a pillow). Usually, consultants say: “Take a posture, as if you were going to watch an interesting film on TV” (that is, you should be comfortable sitting for a long time). It is desirable to feed the baby naked, in one diaper, exposing also his stomach and chest.

Skin to skin contact is very important for lactation, as the sensation of tenderness and love for this warm lump, gently pressed against you, gives an explosion of lactation hormones.

Position the baby so that his tummy is parallel to your body. If his navel is pointing up, he will have to turn his head to suck, this will tire him a lot, because you won’t be able to eat for a long time too, turning your head.

Now you need to position the breast and baby so that his nose (not his mouth!) Looked at the nipple. Put your hand under the head and wait until the baby opens her mouth wide. If he sleeps or thinks, run a finger or nipple on his lips.

As soon as the baby opened his mouth wide, “push” the baby’s head to the chest with your hand, and do not feed the child with your body. The nipple, as if slipping from the upper lip and palate, will be deep in the mouth of the baby.

If the nipple is located at the level of the baby’s mouth, with a wide opening of the mouth, he will only have a nipple area, and he will not capture the chest deeply and correctly.

Unfortunately, it is not always possible to give the baby the breast correctly, and if there is no one to prompt and correct, then as a result of feeding, cracks in the nipples and pain occur. Treatment of cracks is useless, if you do not fix the attachment and remove the substitutes – pacifiers, supplementary feeding from a bottle. The baby will “move out” again and again on the nipple and rub painful cracks in the lower gum.

It helps the air and the milk itself to heal the painful cracks: you need to walk with an open breast as long as possible and leave a few drops of milk on your nipples after feeding. If the cracks are deep, you can use the breast pads for 2−5 days.

GW consultants do not like lining very much, as they still have volume and density and interfere with correcting and shaping the correct grip. In addition, many mothers from the maternity hospital “sit down” on them, and feeding without lining becomes problematic – the baby gets used to the presence of a silicone layer between him and the mother and does not want to take the breast without the lining.

If possible, you should do without the linings, and the cracks between the feedings should be healed with creams for nipples containing lanolin. They do not need to be washed off, they restore damage and soften irritated skin.

When remedied, the crack heals quickly.

It is impossible to treat chest cracks with brilliant green. It strongly dries the skin and only aggravates the situation.

Usually at this time (after cesarean section – a little later), mothers feel a rush of milk, while women sometimes have painful engorgement of the breast associated with insufficiently effective emptying of the breast and a sharp rush of milk. Then there is swelling of the milk ducts and soreness.

This causes mom discomfort; may even increase the temperature. To quickly and effectively cope with the flow of milk, it is necessary to breastfeed the baby as often as possible and more actively, and if the baby does not empty the breast or cannot suck effectively, decant, but only to relieve the baby to more easily capture the not so dense breast.

You can not decant the breast after feeding to the last drop: it will lead to excessive lactation, stretch marks and lactostasis (milk stagnation).

It is also important not to decant a lot of milk, since its production is carried out according to the principle “demand – supply”. The more you express, the more you will arrive.

The baby is best suckling his own milk adjustments.

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