One of the most pressing questions new moms have about breastfeeding is whether their baby is getting enough milk. After all, unlike bottle feeding, you can’t measure how much milk is making its way into your baby’s tummy. Not knowing can be stressful, especially when you are just starting out to breastfeed.
Thankfully, there are a few key signs that can help you know your baby is getting enough milk. Here are the top three:
In our series for educators, we explore new ideas to help you branch out. Read on to be inspired about new topics and effective strategies to help you get creative this year.
Intro to Breastfeeding Class
Most breastfeeding classes are two to three hours and cover the basics, such as latching, newborn hunger cues, and pumping. With breastfeeding, there are more topics than could possibly be covered in such a short amount of time. To help...
As you prepare to welcome your new baby, these are some tips that can help you get breastfeeding off to a great start and keep you on track.
1. Be Committed
Consider why you want to breastfeed (write your reasons down if that helps) and commit to sticking with it. If challenges come up, use these reasons as motivation to get help and work through them.
Dear new parents,
Having a new baby is one of the biggest events in your life. There will be days when you feel like your heart will burst with the love you have for this new little person. There will be other days when you might question why you thought it was a good idea to become a parent in the first place. You will get bombarded with contradictory parenting advice and become overwhelmed. This is all normal. When you are in the throes of caring for a new baby, please remember these few things:
There is no such thing as “perfect.” You can never be a perfect parent, nor will you be able to read a book or website and learn all that you need to know. Such a book or website does not and will never exist. You will make mistakes and learn as you go. You will make changes and adjust as you grow as a parent. You will do the best that you can. Give yourself permission to make mistakes.
Have patience. This stage, phase, or situation that you are in is just for a short time. Your baby will grow and change a little bit each day and you will too. Feedings in the wee hours of morning, colic, teething irritability, and tantrums are just phases that will pass. This doesn’t mean that you can’t do anything to help make these phases a little easier, but just remember that a little time helps too.
Trust your instincts. Don’t second guess your instincts when it comes to what is best for you and your baby. When you get conflicting advice, don’t assume someone else is right and you are wrong. No one else knows your baby and his/her needs like you do. Trust yourself and do what you think is best for yourself and your child.
Someday you will look back on this time with fond memories and a happy heart. You’ll wish you could do it all over again and you wouldn’t change a thing. Your child will tell you that you were the best mom in the world and you’ll agree.
Moms who’ve been there
Copyright 2014 © All Rights Reserved
Plumtree Baby, LLC
When a friend or family member has a new baby, everyone is excited to express their congratulations, see the new baby, and give gifts. Often, friends and family want to help the new family in some way, but offers to feed and hold baby may not be the most helpful, especially for a breastfeeding mother/baby. Rather than politely declining help, parents can suggest these alternatives to their friends and family:
1. Can you bring food? Receiving a hot, homemade meal right at dinnertime can be a lifesaver for new parents and even more so if there are older siblings in the home. If you receive an offer of help, reply with a few available days that would be helpful to receive a meal. Be sure to discuss the time of day that would be best and note your food preferences and allergies (after all, people want you to enjoy what they bring). Friends and family can easily double a recipe and serve their own family and yours at the same time, and it makes them feel good to help. If you want to organize a number of meals and get others on board, check out www.mealtrain.com, a free and very convenient way to stay organized and avoid having the same dish three days in a row, or three meals delivered at once.
2. I would love a visit, but I can’t be a host. Especially if you have visitors in the first week or two, you will be tired, sore and trying to figure things out with baby care and breastfeeding. Be clear that you only have time for a brief visit, or for close friends and family, ask if they could help you while they visit. Maybe they could look after baby while you go take a long, uninterrupted shower or take a nap. If you are breastfeeding, they could make you a snack or bring you a drink, rather than the other way around. If you have older children, perhaps your visitors could take them to the park for a few minutes or entertain them while you care for baby.
3. Would you mind helping me when you visit? A few minutes spent running the vacuum, folding a load of laundry or walking the dog can help so much. Or before your visitors come over, ask if they can stop at the store and pick up a few things that you need. Saving you a trip to the store for a few things can alleviate a lot of stress.
4. Can you check in with me every day? Some days can be rough and emotional, and just a text or phone call to check in can help you remember that you're not alone and people care. On the easier days, you can catch up and stay connected with those closest to you.
5. I have a gift registry for a service that will be very helpful. Rather than receiving an overload of blankets or outfits at your shower, guests can choose to donate to a gift certificate for housekeeping services, diaper services or the services of a postpartum doula. Convey that these gifts will be something you will need and appreciate.
Friends and family genuinely want to do whatever they can to lend you support, but giving them specific ideas can help ensure they do so in a way that will best serve your needs and may alleviate tension for everyone. For more ideas to eliminate stress after baby arrives, see our Following the Birth booklet.
Copyright 2014 © All Rights Reserved
Plumtree Baby, LLC