Be sure you get the right latch
This is KEY. If we don’t have the right latch, we end up with really sore and perhaps damaged nipples.
There’s a TON of great resources online that will literally show you what the right latch looks like but in a
nutshell it’s about getting the lower part of the breast and areola into baby’s mouth so that the nipple
hits their high palette which stimulates sucking.

Latch videos

http://www.breastfeedingmadesimple.com Click on the “animated latch” on the home page to see a
great example of a good latch. There’s other great information on this site as well.
www.ameda.com/latchon Another great visual resources that shows a great latch.
http://www.breastfeedinginc.ca/content.php?pagename=videos One of my favorite resources, this site
has tons of videos on latch.
2. Experiment with different breastfeeding positions
I read in my Hypnobabies literature that the cross-cradle is the best position for newborns and I couldn’t
agree more. My little guy needed my hand on his neck to guide him to the nipple, help establish the
right latch, and keep him in the right position as he nurses. We STILL use this position if we’re having

I also have heard that the football hold is really helpful for sore nipples and establishing a good latch.
The sideline position, which you can do in bed, is nice for sleep-deprived mamas, but it is a bit advanced
for some newborns to get the hang of right off the bat.

With my fast milk letdown, we also use the position where I’m laying back and baby’s body is on top of
mine. This way his head is upright and the milk has to work against gravity, helping slow the flow.

While I tend to rely on cradle hold, I know that rotating positions helps with sore nipples since baby’s
latch will hit different parts of breast depending on angle.

3. Get help early
Habits form fast so it’s VITAL to get the latch right at the beginning. (Don’t despair if you didn’t, as
babies are adaptable.) It will help you and your baby immensely if you start off on the right foot.

If you can afford it, I highly recommend hiring a Lactation Consultant. Even if you are breastfeeding just
fine, it can be a worthwhile investment. Think of them as Breast Whisperers, experts in the field of
palettes, latching, positions, and intake volume. I was AMAZED at how helpful and empowering my
consultations were.

If seeing a consultant isn’t for you, check out some of these free resources online:

General breastfeeding sites

www.llli.org The international La Leche League website, a phenomenal resource for breastfeeding
www.bfmed.org The Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine is a worldwide organization of physicians
dedicated to the promotion, protection and support of breastfeeding and human lactation.
www.kellymom.com Awesome site. Created by a lactation consultant and mother of three, this site
provides evidence-based information on breastfeeding, sleep and parenting.
www.breastfeeding.com This site has a ton of resources including videos, forums, etc.
www.drjacknewman.com One of the great advocates for breastfeeding, Dr. Jack Newman’s site has a
plethora of breastfeeding including videos, articles and troubleshooting information.
Milk production resources

www.lowmilksupply.org This site gives information, support and solutions for mothers struggling with
low milk supply.
http://milkshare.birthingforlife.com/ A great site for moms looking to give or receive breast milk.
4. Use props
We are lucky to have all of these great tools to help us breastfeed well. Some of my favorites include:

The Boppy. My favorite nursing pillow… so comfy… so supportive… I never wanted to nurse without it!
My Breast Friend. Another nursing pillow that’s great if you’re having a hard time getting the latch and
positioning right. It’s very firm and you can even nurse while standing up! (with support from my hands,
of course).
Motherlove Nipple Cream. This stuff is wonder cream for sore nipples, creating a healing “moisture seal”
in-between feedings. Made with extra virgin olive oil, beeswax, shea butter, marshmallow root, and
calendula, it’s non-toxic and safe for the baby to ingest, so no need to rinse off before feeding.
Nursing Pads. At the beginning, while you are establishing your milk supply, nursing mamas tend to leak.
Using these pads, you prevent the embarrassing ring-around- the-nipple phenomenon.
5. Expect that it will be challenging.
Call me twisted but I find if I know the worst right off the bat it helps me to stay positive. It is easier for
me to find joy in the small successes along the way and not get discouraged if it doesn’t click right away.
I also found that despite the right latch, I do have some tenderness from time to time, and that is
perfectly normal.

6. Be sure to burp ‘em
If you don’t want your precious milk regurgitated onto the back of your couch, be sure to burp your
baby well! This will also help ease painful gas bubbles that often accumulate in baby’s belly since their
digestive system is still so delicate.

7. Get an eyewitness
My husband was a HUGE help in making sure I got the right latch with Griffin. From his perspective, he
could see things that I couldn’t. He also was supportive in terms of getting me water each time I fed,
inserting extra pillows for support, and changing Griffin’s diaper once I finished. He will also be the one
who feeds Griffin a bottle at some point so it’s good for him to get involved early!

8. Use a breast pump if needed
I found pumping at 3 weeks was helpful so I could literally *see* milk coming out of my breast. While
not always a good indicator of supply, it did give me peace of mind that things were working as a first-
time breastfeeder.

I also liked having a bit in the freezer so that if I had to leave town unexpectedly or, God forbid, be
hospitalized, my child would have some nourishment on hand. Pumps can also be great to help regulate
or increase milk supply if needed. My lactation consultant recommended pumping each breast once a
day in the morning when supply is usually higher and baby’s appetite is smaller.

9. Keep it pure
For the first month, try to just breastfeed without introducing a bottle or pacifier. This will help to
establish a strong breast bond so that the baby doesn’t experience nipple confusion and start preferring
artificial nipples.

10. Think peaceful thoughts
When I find myself tensing up while feeding Griffin, I consciously work at relaxing so that the experience
is more enjoyable and successful for both of us. Instead of reading or looking at my phone, I often pray
for him as he’s lying there. I believe little Griff picks up on this healing energy and feeds better as a
result. And it’s especially important to relax while pumping to maximize milk production.

Here are more breastfeeding resources:

- See more at: http://www.mamanatural.com/top-10-breastfeeding-tips/#sthash.nXpibllC.dpuf

ncredible facts about babies, breast milk, and

Did you know?
Moms can still breastfeed while sick. In fact, it’s good for your baby. When you get sick,
your body starts fighting the illness by making antibodies, which then get passed on to
your baby. By the time you show symptoms of illness, guess what? Your baby has already
been exposed to the virus or bacteria, which boosts your baby’s immune system. By
continuing to breastfeed, you're not just keeping your milk supply up, but you’re further
protecting your baby from getting sick in the future.
Like pregnancy and childbirth, you should learn about breastfeeding before becoming a new
mom. Test your breastfeeding knowledge by reading these facts to better understand how
amazing women’s bodies truly are.
 Breastfed babies typically get sick less. Breastfeeding reduces the risk of ear
infections, diarrhea, and stomach problems.
 Children who are breastfed have a lower rate of certain illnesses as they grow
up. Babies who are not breastfed have a higher risk of asthma, diabetes, and childhood
obesity. Since African-Americans are at an increased risk for these conditions, it’s
important to understand the long-term benefits of breastfeeding.
 Your baby can smell you. Newborns have a strong sense of smell and know the unique
scent of your breast milk. That is why your baby will turn his or her head to you when he
or she is hungry.
 Your baby can see you up close and personal. Babies are born extremely
nearsighted, which means they can only see things about 8 to 15 inches away. That also
happens to be the distance between your face and your baby’s face when breastfeeding.
So when your baby locks eyes with you, it’s a true bonding moment.
 Breastfeeding allows your body to recover from pregnancy and childbirth more
quickly. The hormones released when you breastfeed make your uterus contract back to
its pre-pregnancy size.
 Breastfeeding exposes your baby to many different tastes. Formula has one taste.
But through your breast milk, your baby eventually gets a slight taste of whatever you
eat, although not directly. This will later make introducing solid foods easier.
 Breastfeeding may help you to lose weight. Mothers who exclusively breastfeed can
burn as many as 600 calories a day, which may help you get back to your pre-pregnancy
 Breastfeeding reduces the risk of breast cancer and ovarian cancer in moms.
 Breastfeeding can save a family more than $1,200 to $1,500 in formula-related
expenses in a baby’s first year alone.
 Your body starts getting ready to breastfeed during pregnancy. After you give
birth, your body gets the final signal to make milk, which is usually more than one
newborn can handle. Why? Your body doesn’t know whether you have one, two, three,
four, or more babies to feed. Your supply then regulates to meet your baby’s (or babies’)
 Before your milk comes in, in the first few days after birth, your breasts make a
thick, sticky, yellowish fluid sometimes referred to as “liquid gold.” Called
colostrum, this liquid has the calcium, potassium, proteins, minerals, and antibodies your
baby needs. Your baby needs only a few teaspoons to feel full and stay healthy until your
milk flow increases, about two to five days after birth.
 Your breast milk changes during a feeding session. When your baby first starts to
nurse, your milk is a watery bluish color. Toward the end of the feeding session, your
baby gets to thicker, fattier milk, which gives your baby the calories needed to grow
healthy and strong.
 Breast milk heals. Breast milk is filled with special components that are designed to
help fight infection and cut down on swelling in the breast. So, if your breasts are sore
those first few days, gently massaging some of your milk into your nipples and breasts
can soothe the soreness and speed up recovery.

15 Cool Facts about Breastfeeding
posted in Breastfeeding, Parenting, Postpartum by healthfoundationsbirthcenter
We all know the saying “breast is best” but here are some of the colossal benefits, and a couple quirky facts, about
1. Human milk boosts a baby’s immune system big time—helping baby fight viral, bacterial, and parasitic
infections, including:
 Respiratory tract infections
 Ear infections
 Bacterial meningitis
 Pneumonia
 Urinary tract infections
 Infant diarrhea
 Common colds and flus
2. Breastfeeding can actually reduce baby’s risk of disease later in life, including:
 Type I and II diabetes
 Hodgkin’s disease
 Leukemia
 Obesity
 High blood pressure
 High cholesterol levels
 Crohn’s disease
 Ulcerative colitis
 Asthma
 Eczema
3. Breastfeeding reduces mama’s risk of ovarian and breast cancer, heart disease, and osteoporosis. The longer she
breastfeeds, the higher the benefit. In fact, a woman who breastfeeds for 8 years has nearly a 0% risk of breast
Get this—breastfeeding a baby girl actually reduces her lifetime risk of breast cancer by 25%.
4. Breastfeeding saves a family approximately $2 to 4 thousand dollars annually (compared to cost of formula).
5. Breastfeeding helps mama heal faster in the postpartum, helping her uterus return to pre-pregnancy size faster
and lowering overall postpartum blood loss.
6. Breastfeeding can help mama return to her pre-baby weight. It takes 1000 calories a day on average to produce
breast milk. Women are advised to consume an extra 500 calories a day, and the body dips into reserves it built up
in pregnancy to make the rest (it’s important to consume those extra calories or the body actually goes into
“starvation mode” and holds onto the reserves).
7. Producing breast milk consumes 25% of the body’s energy; the brain only uses 20% by comparison.
8. On average, babies remove 67% of the milk mama has available—they eat until fullness, not until the breast is
9. Almost 75% of all moms produce more milk in their right breast, whether they are right- or left- handed.
10. Mama’s body is constantly making the perfect milk for baby. Milk changes its nutritional profile as baby grows
(milk made for a 3 month old is different than for a 9 month old). Milk can even change day to day—for example,
water content may increase during times of hot weather and baby-sickness to provide extra hydration.
11. Human milk contains substances that promote sleep and calmness in babies (who doesn’t love
that?) Breastfeeding also calms mama and helps her bond to baby.
12. Breastfed infants are at lower risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
13. Mama’s breasts can detect even a one degree fluctuation in baby’s body temperature and adjust accordingly to
heat up or cool down baby as needed. This is one reason skin-to-skin contact in the early days is so crucial.
14. Breastfeeding reduces baby’s risk of cavities later on and may lower the chance they will need braces as kids.
15. Breastfeeding mamas sleep on average 45 minutes more a night, compared to those who formula feed.

WHO recommends
WHO recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life. At six months, solid foods,
such as mashed fruits and vegetables, should be introduced to complement breastfeeding for up to two
years or more. In addition:

breastfeeding should begin within one hour of birth
breastfeeding should be "on demand", as often as the child wants day and night; and
bottles or pacifiers should be avoided.
Health benefits for infants
Breast milk is the ideal food for newborns and infants. It gives infants all the nutrients they need for healthy
development. It is safe and contains antibodies that help protect infants from common childhood illnesses
such as diarrhoea and pneumonia, the two primary causes of child mortality worldwide. Breast milk is
readily available and affordable, which helps to ensure that infants get adequate nutrition.
Benefits for mothers
Breastfeeding also benefits mothers. Exclusive breastfeeding is associated with a natural (though not fail-
safe) method of birth control (98% protection in the first six months after birth). It reduces risks of breast
and ovarian cancer later in life, helps women return to their pre-pregnancy weight faster, and lowers rates
of obesity.
Long-term benefits for children
Beyond the immediate benefits for children, breastfeeding contributes to a lifetime of good health.
Adolescents and adults who were breastfed as babies are less likely to be overweight or obese. They are less
likely to have type-2 diabetes and perform better in intelligence tests.
Why not infant formula?
Infant formula does not contain the antibodies found in breast milk. When infant formula is not properly
prepared, there are risks arising from the use of unsafe water and unsterilized equipment or the potential
presence of bacteria in powdered formula. Malnutrition can result from over-diluting formula to "stretch"
supplies. While frequent feeding maintains breast milk supply, if formula is used but becomes unavailable, a
return to breastfeeding may not be an option due to diminished breast milk production.
HIV and breastfeeding
An HIV-infected mother can pass the infection to her infant during pregnancy, delivery and through
breastfeeding. Antiretroviral (ARV) drugs given to either the mother or HIV-exposed infant reduces the risk
of transmission. Together, breastfeeding and ARVs have the potential to significantly improve infants'
chances of surviving while remaining HIV uninfected. WHO recommends that when HIV-infected mothers
breastfeed, they should receive ARVs and follow WHO guidance for infant feeding.
Regulating breast-milk substitutes
An international code to regulate the marketing of breast-milk substitutes was adopted in 1981. It calls for:
 all formula labels and information to state the benefits of breastfeeding and the health risks of
 no promotion of breast-milk substitutes;
 no free samples of substitutes to be given to pregnant women, mothers or their families; and
 no distribution of free or subsidized substitutes to health workers or facilities
Support for mothers is essential
Breastfeeding has to be learned and many women encounter difficulties at the beginning. Nipple pain, and
fear that there is not enough milk to sustain the baby are common. Health facilities that support
breastfeeding—by making trained breastfeeding counsellors available to new mothers—encourage higher
rates of the practice. To provide this support and improve care for mothers and newborns, there are "baby-
friendly" facilities in about 152 countries thanks to the WHO-UNICEF Baby-friendly Hospital initiative.
Work and breastfeeding
Many mothers who return to work abandon breastfeeding partially or completely because they do not have
sufficient time, or a place to breastfeed, express and store their milk. Mothers need a safe, clean and private
place in or near their workplace to continue breastfeeding. Enabling conditions at work, such as paid
maternity leave, part-time work arrangements, on-site crèches, facilities for expressing and storing breast
milk, and breastfeeding breaks, can help.
The next step: phasing in solid foods
To meet the growing needs of babies at six months of age, mashed solid foods should be introduced as a
complement to continued breastfeeding. Foods for the baby can be specially prepared or modified from
family meals. WHO notes that:
 breastfeeding should not be decreased when starting on solids;
 food should be given with a spoon or cup, not in a bottle;
 food should be clean, safe and locally available; and
 ample time is needed for young children to learn to eat solid foods.