Breastfeeding is considered by many doctors to be the healthiest way to feed a newborn infant. Getting the hang of this, however, can be hard for some breastfeeding moms. Starting early and learning the proper technique are some of the most popular tips for breast feeding moms. There are also a number of other tips, and some of them address such issues as how often a breast fed baby should eat, diet while breastfeeding, sore nipples, and dealing with leakage.
Starting breastfeeding as early as possible is one of the most common pieces of breastfeeding advice. This allow the mother and baby to bond as soon as possible. It also allows them to both learn proper breastfeeding techniques, and comfortable breastfeeding positions.
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Getting the baby to suck on the nipple properly, or latching on, is probably one of the most difficult aspects of this process for breastfeeding moms. To get a baby to latch on, the mother can rub her nipple on her baby's upper lip or cheek. This will usually cause him to start looking for the nipple, or rooting, and mom should then pull her baby towards her nipple. A baby who is breastfeeding properly should have his mouth open wide while sucking on the nipple, and he can be seen or heard swallowing.
Many new breastfeeding moms wonder how often their babies should eat. This usually varies with every child, but since breast milk is processed faster than formula, breastfed babies tend to eat more frequently. Many times, they will be hungry about every hour or two, and frequent feedings are common. Breastfeeding moms are often advised to sleep when their babies are sleeping, even if it is in the middle of the afternoon. This will allow her to get enough rest, since her baby will usually wake up several times every night when breastfeeding.
Breastfeeding moms should also stick to a healthy diet. This not only ensures that the baby gets the proper nutrition, but also gives the mother more energy and resistance to illness. Toxins like alcohol, nicotine, and other drugs should also be avoided, since these can be passed to a baby through the breast milk.
One of the biggest complaints of many breastfeeding moms is sore nipples. These can often be very painful and may even crack or bleed. A tip that many veteran breastfeeding mothers have is rubbing lanolin cream on the nipples, which can often soothe the chafed skin and prevent cracking of the skin. Breast milk leakage is another common complaint. Nursing pads are often a necessity when breastfeeding, but in a pinch, thin panty liners will work just as well.