Top 20 Breastfeeding Tips:
World Breastfeeding Week is almost upon us (1st to 7th of August), so we have created a list of breastfeeding suggestions and tips to help all nursing mothers. When it comes to the crunch, all you really need is Mother and baby, however, some of these might help ease the journey along.
1. Buy some Lansinoh / Lanolin nipple cream:
Put this wonder cream in your hospital bag and use it from the outset. The most discomfort in breastfeeding is nipple pain – and this virtually eliminates it! It is not harmful to baby in any way. This is a MUST!
2. Invest in a good Nursing Bra:
Buy a few of these as they are essentials – they have a little clip on the top for quick access. Without a nursing bra – you will be in a bit of bother navigating that little head around a normal bra. Again – this is a MUST!
3. Use vests as Nursing Tops:
Be sure to stock up on plenty of stretchy vest tops to wear under your normal tops. Shirts and blouses are great for feeding as you can just button down. There are lots of special breastfeeding tops you can buy also in all the main maternity and baby stores.
4. Buy a Nursing Pillow:
An infant breastfeeding pillow for sitting up breastfeeding is another essential in the early days – not too rigid so its tight around your tummy – but loose and comfortable and cosy for baby. The nursing pillow comes with the BellaMoon Full Moon.
5. Take note of Multi Mam compress:
If you find that things are getting painful, nip to the chemist (or Amazon) to buy these Multi Mam soothers will help ease the nipple pain in the early days. Some people also swear by cabbage leaves! Or just simply let those boys out for some fresh air! (Just be sure you have no Amazon deliveries coming that day or the delivery driver might get more than they bargained for!)
6. Hair bobbles are multi-functional!:
Put a hair bobble around your wrist (or your bra strap) so you know which side you last fed from – genius! You can also get phone apps which tell you what side you fed on and for how long. Or buy a nice little journal and write it down – as well as any other notes to remind yourself of anything in case baby becomes unwell, you can look back and see how much they fed. Be sure to use some of those bobbles to keep your hair tied back – Eva Longoria has been rocking the breastfeeding hairstyle.
7. One-handed pre-prepared meals are best:
Ideally batch cook some pre-prepared meals for the freezer that can be easily defrosted and eaten with one hand. Or ‘find’ a very useful husband that can cook for you and feed you. Yes ladies – it is highly likely that your husband might have to spoon feed you while you cluster feed baby, so be sure to warn him in advance! If your husband complains about this – show him this photo of ‘The Rock’ feeding his wife whilst breastfeeding.
8. Water bottle and travel mug hacks:
You will be incredibly thirsty and will need to drink lots and lots of water to keep your supply up and help with your own energy levels. If you drink tea or coffee – some Mothers use a travel mug to prevent any spillage on top of babys head, especially if you have toddlers that tend to knock into you whilst feeding/having a cuppa.
9. Snacks, snacks and more snacks:
Breastfeeding uses up a lot of energy and you will find yourself getting very hungry very quickly. Have plenty of healthy snacks in the house that you can eat in one hand in between feeds. Fruit, crackers, hummus, breadsticks – even chocolate if you need a quick hit. Don’t let yourself go hungry – you need your energy to be high for you and baby.
10. Prepare a Breastfeeding Toddler Basket:
This is not for you or baby – this is for any toddlers that may be bored or restless as Mummy can’t play with them whilst nursing. Stock it up with lots of little toys they love and bring it out during feeding time.
11. Treat yourself to a rocking chair and stool (and Netflix):
This is great as you can feed baby and rest in a rocking chair, put your feet up and relax. A good suggestion is to have a rocking chair that you can move into the living room for the early days so you can watch TV/Netflix whilst nursing. Then when baby is older (and you are a breastfeeding pro) you can move it into the bedroom for the night-time feeds. (Exception – the ‘put your feet up and relax’ clause probably won’t work if you are a second or third time Mother!)
12. Breastfeeding – a spectator sport!:
If you are happily feeding in the privacy of your house and some family come to visit to meet the new baby, it is handy to have a Breastfeeding Privacy Cover around, depending on how comfortable everyone is watching you breastfeed (such as your Father or brother!). Similarly, if you feel uncomfortable feeding in public, then use it. They are designed to cover you and baby so you can breastfeed in a very subtle way. The Breastfeeding Privacy Cover comes with the BellaMoon Full Moon.
A sling is also super handy for baby wearing and multi-tasking. Try on a few slings so you can check for your comfort levels.
13. Buy a long cable charger for your phone:
Trust me you will need this – thank us later!
14. Breastpump, breastmilk storage bags and a bottle:
If you intend to combi feed, or just try and let Dad or others feed baby, then you will need a good breast pump to allow you to express milk – double electric ones are generally faster than manual ones. You can express milk and store it in the freezer for a later date. You will then need to find a bottle that your baby will actually feed from – which is the ultimate holy grail! That’s a whole blog post on its own.
15. Start with a small packet of Breast Pads:
For when your supply really gets going and things start to leak! Save yourself an embarrassing situation and buy a small packet to start with – you don’t need these on Day 1 – more for when your supply is established.
16. Consider Nipple Shells/Breast Shells:
These are little cups which you put over your nipple to collect any leaking milk. It is quite like a breast pad, only rather than soaking up the milk leakage, it collects it in a tiny little cup and allows you to re-use it later. You can use breastmilk on any of your baby’s sores to cure them – breastmilk is magic – it cures virtually everything! Again these are for a little later on when your supply is established.
17. Consider Nipple Shields:
These protect your nipples and can help with latch pain, particularly in the early days. Some Mothers love them – some never need them.
18. Join a good Breastfeeding Support Group:
Finding some like-minded Mothers who are going through the same thing as you is one of the best things you can do for your sanity. Most towns have a weekly breastfeeding group – it is well worth the trip. Ask your local doctors surgery what day it is on, so you can join in the early weeks when you will need the help. It is also useful to have the names and numbers for some Lactation Consultants who can talk you through any breastfeeding problems. Another great top is to join lots of online social media breastfeeding support groups – I guarantee you that there is a one for your own country or big city – and they are amazing!
19. Allow yourself some day-time rest:
Get as much rest as you can throughout the day (if you can) when you are breastfeeding. Lying on your side breastfeeding on top of an adult bed is a great way to do this – (you must never do this on a sofa).
BellaMoon Breastfeeding Day Bed is a lovely comfortable way to lie down and feed on top of the bed during the day.
20. Prepare for the Night Ahead:
Night time breastfeeding is exhausting for the first few weeks and months, particularly if your baby refuses a bottle. It generally means that Dads can’t help much and you are on your own for the night feeds. A side crib which is attached to the bed and open to the bedside, is very useful for easy access to baby for the night-time feeds.
A warm cardigan or top is also essential for breastfeeding babies during winter – you will get very cold when up feeding at night, yet you can’t have any loose bedding or duvets near baby. So, keep yourself warm and cosy with warm pyjamas or a cardigan. BellaMoon Half Moon provides great support if you intend to bring baby into your bed to breastfeed at intervals during the night. The supportive removable wedge allows you to continuously nurture your baby on your side, whilst helping to prevent you from rolling over.
Above all, just relax and enjoy your time bonding with your beautiful baby.
Let us know in the comments if you have any other amazing breastfeeding tips for Mothers. Please tag and share through social media – its World Breastfeeding Week after all – and we need to celebrate it this week!