Did you know 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 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.
Please help me welcome Lynn Turcotte-Schuh, who has written this guest blog post for us today! She is a child birth and parenting expert, and the owner of Happy Mama Wellness. Lynn helps expecting families prepare to welcome their little ones, and care for them after they arrive.
Thank you Lynn for your wisdom, and for this incredibly informative guest post for our audience.
As a first-time expectant Mama, you want to be prepared for anything and everything. The problem is, most of what lies ahead will be out of your control. Rest assured, no matter HOW your baby enters the world (vaginal, traditional cesarean or gentle cesarean) you can still have an empowered birth experience!
The large majority of Mamas are going to enter their birth experience laboring towards a vaginal birth. Nationally, just over 30% of those Mamas will end up having a cesarean birth.
For those of you who are exclusively pumping, I absolutely applaud you. You deserve all the brownie points, and all the brownies. In my opinion, exclusive pumping (EP) is more challenging than nursing a baby at the breast. At least, emotionally, and sometimes physically too.
It's harder to establish and maintain a milk supply when you EP, challenging to pump and care for a baby, and often comes with a slew of emotions around not nursing baby at the breast. These are just to name a few.
That being said, there are countless women who are not afraid of that challenge and take on the EP journey with stride (and a whole lot of support!) And to those of you in it, I tip my LC hat to you (and my momma hat, and my friend hat, and my stranger hat) because I see the struggle EP mommas face in my practice, and want you to know I see how hard you're working, and no matter what anyone says to you or thinks you're just as much a breastfeeding mom as any other breastfeeding mom.
With that said, I also wanted to provide you, brave EP momma, with more than just recognition. In today's post, I have some gold for you (liquid gold if you will). We are going to cover the topic of Exclusive Pumping, as I chat with an EP expert and share all of her best tips, and a few of mine too.
How much time have you spent thinking about your birth? If you're like most first time moms, I bet it's alot! You want to know exactly what to expect, and that makes complete sense- you've never done this before. You've taken the birth class, you're preparing for labor and practicing your pain management techniques... All of this is good, really important stuff, BUT- you're missing one really important piece.
One of our new segments on the blog is the Successful Breastfeeding Story Series, and the journeys we are capturing are absolutely blowing me away! This one is no exception.
This episode of the Successful Breastfeeding Podcast I had the honor of chatting with Gopika. She is a single mom, which is no easy feat (I've been there too!) and she is raising a beautiful daughter with some unique challenges.
At her first pediatrician appointment after the birth of her son the doctores were shocked that she looked so well rested when she had a three day old..... But wait??? Well rested with a newborn?? That's not a thing..... Is it?
Enjoy the sleep now while you can because when your baby comes you'll never sleep again! That's what you hear, right? Everyone likes to talk about how sleep deprived you're going to be with a newborn. And alternatively, those same people then turn around and want to know if your baby is sleeping through the night, then silently judge you if your answer is no.
Well.... guess what??? Babies are NOT supposed to sleep through the night BUT there are absolutely some things breastfeeding mommas can do to make night time a whole lot easier! "I asked my husband what the most surprising thing about having a baby has been for him, or the thing he didn't expect. He said sleep, hands down. Everyone said he'd be sleep deprived and miserable with a new baby and he's not." - Allison Alexander.
Click below to listen to the podcast episode all about how YOU can get MORE SLEEP!
“Say goodbye to sleep!” I can’t remember how many times I heard this while pregnant with my second baby after a 10 year gap between pregnancies. It was super annoying. I knew every baby was different, but I also knew a few tricks that had worked really well with my first baby, and I was looking forward to trying them again to see if they worked.
We’re 4 weeks into our breastfeeding journey, and my son is a VERY different human from my daughter. She was more laid back. He’s particular. I checked her diaper constantly because she couldn’t care less what went on in there. I hear from him if 5 minutes pass and he hasn’t been changed. Temperature didn’t bother her. If he’s even slightly chilly, the entire house knows about it.
But the sleep tricks that worked the first time still worked this time, so I wanted to share them with you! Everybody could use better quality sleep.
If you've ever taken my online breastfeeding class, then you've probably seen this statistic:
The #1 reason a woman gives up breastfeeding is because she thinks she isn't making enough milk.
Why is that??? Well..... one of the top reasons a mom thinks she's not making enough milk is because she doesn't understand what her baby is trying to communicate. The great news is newborns are actually excellent communicators, if you know how to interpret their language that is. In this blog we're going to talk about the 3 most important cues your baby uses to communicate, that could just save your breastfeeding relationship.
When I was just starting out on my breastfeeding journey, I ended up in rough shape just a few days in. I had no idea why my nipples were cracked and bleeding, but I knew I couldn’t go on that way and I was determined to find a solution.
While it was a great, positive mindset and I’m happy I didn’t give up, my search for a solution wasn’t easy. During my unpaid maternity leave, I was stretching every dollar for essentials. Unfortunately, I wasted a lot of time and money trying to troubleshoot a solution on my own.
*Nipple cream for the pain
*A Manual Breast Pump to relieve engorgement
*Disposable Breast Pads to catch the drips
*Bottles and Pacifiers to give me a break
And all of it was a waste and actually NOT AT ALL WHAT WE NEEDED! Great. Here's what those products ended up doing for me....... They wasted my time. They wasted my energy. And I was still in a really rough place with breastfeeding.
I bet you've heard that sleeping with your baby is dangerous, that you shouldn't do it. We've all seen the "Back to Sleep" campaign, which says the only safe place for your baby to sleep is flat on their back, in a crib. And you know what? For many, this is actually true, HOWEVER, it can be safe to sleep next to your baby if you follow ALL of the rules.......
Kelly Maher, CLC, CLE
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