Breastfeeding

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Breastfeeding

Benefits of Breastfeeding: – Breastfeeding is the preferred choice of all health professionals because it is so beneficial for your baby. Formula milk provides similar amounts of most nutrients, but can’t offer the same protection against infections as breast milk does. Your first milk, known as colostrums, is especially important, because it is packed with antibodies to protect your newborn from infection.
Breastfeeding is the healthiest choice for you, too. It reduces your risk of developing pre-menopausal breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and fractures from osteoporosis later in life. It will also help you to lose the weight you gained during pregnancy.
How to Breastfeed: – Though breastfeeding is healthy, it isn’t always easy, especially for first-time mums. If you are finding it difficult at first, ask a nurse for some help while you are still in the hospital.
The key to breastfeeding is getting your baby to latch on to your breast correctly. If he doesn’t latch on well:

  • He might not get enough milk during a feeding session and so need to feed more frequently.
  • He might swallow too much air while feeding, leading to painful gas.
  • Your nipples might hurt, crack or bleed while bleeding.

To latch on well, your baby needs to open his mouth wide and take in a large portion of your breast. When your baby drinks, you will be able to hear him swallowing, and it will not be painful for you. If you hear a clicking sound, as if your baby loses his grip on your breast, it means he has not latched on well.
A breastfeeding session can be as fast as five minutes or take up to an hour at a time. The time your baby spends at the breast is not a sign of how much milk he has had. Make sure you are sitting comfortably and holding your baby well, otherwise you can strain your back.
Your baby will not be able to hold his head up on his own for the first few weeks. You will need to support his head and shoulders while holding him.
Feed your baby as often as he seems to want it. A sure sign that your baby is feeding well is that he is gaining weight.
You will both soon settle into a feeding pattern that will make feeds, nappy changes and sleep times more predictable.
After each feeding session, hold your baby against you with his head resting on your shoulder so that he can burp. Burping is important to allow any bubbles of air that your baby has swallowed to come out. If it stays trapped inside, the air might be painful for your baby. If your baby doesn’t burp, don’t worry. Some babies burp a lot, while others rarely need to.

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