Successful Breastfeeding Blog
Evidence based advice, support, and education for modern families.
Did you know that growth charts aren't created equal? There are specific growth charts that primarily represent formula fed babies, and babies fed human milk.
Very often I have families reach out to me worried that their babies aren't getting enough milk after they took a trip to their pediatrician. "Kelly, they said my baby's in the 10th percentile, and now I'm worried I'm not making enough. Help!"
Does this sound familiar? Hearing that your baby is "low" on the charts may seem scary. If you've ever been concerned about your baby's weight based on their charts, then this post is for you! Please welcome my guest blog contributor, Dr. Krupa Playforth, The Pediatrician Mom, as she shares with you her expert insights about navigating your baby's weight gain, and understanding the growth charts your baby's doctor uses.
Have you ever felt like an outright failure when it comes to feeding your new baby? You're not alone. There's nothing easy about learning to nurse a new baby, and those early weeks and months can take a toll on our sanity.
You might have found yourself thinking....
"Am I making enough milk?"
"Am I latching them right?"
"I feel guilty because I don't love this like everyone else."
"Am I enough for this baby?"
I've had every one of these thoughts, and more. BUT there's something I really really want you to know. You ARE enough. And more than that... your worth is not measured in how much milk you make. Nobody knows this better than my friend Sarah Farrell Johnson, who's literally written the book on this concept. And she's right. But rather than hear it from me, I invite you to hear it from her.
This post is about self love, and compassion when things aren't going how you might have wanted them to on your journey. Please enjoy this guest post from Sarah, and I hope that after you're feeling more confident in your journey, however that may look.... because after all... Supported is Best (#SupportedIsBest)! And as far as this post is concerned, that means supporting and loving yourself.
I hear the argument made frequently that breast/chestfed babies are at a disadvantage because there's so little iron in human milk compared to formula. This is often the rationale behind the recommendation to start babies on iron fortified cereal, sometimes as early as four months.
While, yes, it's true that human milk has less iron than formula, there's something important you MUST understand:
Babies can absorb 50-70% of the iron they consume in your milk. This is a great example of human milk's bioavailability powers. (Which just means your baby is really great at absorbing the nutrients in your milk!) On the flip side, babies who are given cow's milk based formula only absorb about 3-12% of the iron that is added to it. (And only 1-7% of iron is absorbed from soy based formulas!) Furthermore, iron fortified cereals only offer a rate of 4-10% of iron absorption. This is partly what I mean when I say that these cereals aren't much more than filler foods. (Which is something I say frequently.)
A clogged duct is one of the most annoying parts about breastfeeding. Even when things are going well, you might find baby slept through the night for the first time and you woke up engorged with a clogged duct. Or you accidentally wore the wrong kind of bra that caused some weird pressure, leaving you with a hard rock like spot (or multiple) in your breast.
Congratulations!! You're thinking about breastfeeding and looking for some tips, or maybe you've just had your baby. Either way you've stopped in the right place.
If we haven't met yet (I'm Kelly btw) then you probably don't know too much about me and what we do here at Successful Breastfeeding. I'll spare you all the details for now, and give you the short run down. We are a team of lactation experts, and wrote this post based on our almost 20 years of combined experience to help you prepare for your own Successful Breastfeeding Journey!
So, whether you're making plans and preparing for your baby's arrival or looking for some tips and suggestions for right now.... click on through and check out our tips that are proven to make breastfeeding as easy as possible!
You’ve probably heard teaching sign language to your baby can help lessen frustration for them (and possibly save you from some tantrums) by allowing them to communicate things to you they don’t have spoken words for just yet. This sounds amazing, right?! But teaching your baby sign language is so much more than avoiding tantrums. You might not know it now, but there’s another BIG benefit to this early communication with your little one.
"When a child loses a parent they are called an orphan. When a spouse loses their partner they are widowed. When parents lose their child there is no word to describe them...simply that they are still parents" - President Ronald Reagan
October 15th marks a sad day for many parents as it's Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. Although the whole month is dedicated to pregnancy and infant loss awareness thanks to President Ronald Reagan. Statistically it is thought that ¼ pregnancies ends in miscarriage. While this may seem like an odd and sobering topic for a lactation blog, for many grieving parents, lactation is still a process they have to go through, even if their pregnancy ended without a living baby.
Loss after 16 weeks may still trigger Lactogenesis - the hormonal process of making milk. This can be shocking for a parent dealing with the unexpected loss of a pregnancy. They don't have their baby. Why should they have milk? We help these parents navigate the confusing and often emotionally painful process, letting them know their options and supporting them in whichever they choose.
You've heard it before. Everyone has. "Breast is Best." But what does that really mean? Best for babies? Moms? Better for their physical and mental well being, of course. But what about the environment? Breastfeeding is very green! Society at large? Surely the global economy can't benefit from your breastfeeding relationship, right? Think again! A study completed in 2017 showed that if just 50% of the world's infants were exclusively breastfed for 6 months, it would save 300 billion (yes, billion with a B) dollars and 520,000 children's lives. Those are some big numbers. For every $1 invested in supporting breastfeeding mothers, that dollar generates $35 dollars in economic returns. Talk about a good return!
What does that mean for you personally?
6/29/2019 4 Comments
What's the story behind these jars of milk? How did one get only 4 oz in 4hrs, but the other got 16 oz?!
Both were collected using the same techniques, the same breast pump, by a mom nursing a 4-month-old baby, so what's the deal? What do you think the difference is between the mom with the 4 oz jar on the left and the mom with the whopping 16 oz jar on the right?!
What advice would you give to the poor mom who only pumped 4oz, to help her increase her milk supply? Read on to learn the story!
Did you know that the birth you have matters when it comes to breastfeeding? There are certain interventions that can affect breastfeeding and your milk supply. Some common interventions that can affect your ability to breastfeed are IV fluids, epidural, Pitocin, and cesarean births.
Sometimes birth interventions are necessary, and if that's the case, that doesn't mean you can't breastfeed. It just means we may need to alter the way you approach those first feedings and the early postpartum period so you can have the best breastfeeding experience despite your birthing circumstances.
Knowing is half the battle. As a lactation expert, one of the fist things I would say to you during a virtual breastfeeding support session is,"tell me about your birth." I can get clues about what's going on based on your birth experience, and then use that knowledge to make a plan of action that will work for you, your baby, and your circumstances.
In this post we cover different birthing scenarios, and how you can still have Your Best Start to Breastfeeding, no matter your birthing outcomes.
I'm Kelly Maher Carvell, Successful Breastfeeding LLC's founder, and lactation expert. I've made it my personal mission to reach as many parents as possible (like you!) to prepare you for your Successful Breastfeeding Journey. Thank you for allowing me and my team to support you. Before you leave the blog grab one of my FREEBIES like my Prenatal Success Kit or the Pump More Milk for Your Stash Guide. You've got this and I'm here to help!
Kelly Maher, CLC, CLE
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