WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO NURSE A BABY?
Before we dive into how to nurse a baby, one have to know that making decision to have a family is not easy in any way, especially for the man, his potential wife, or both. Though having a family or baby makes you feel happy but it comes with its own set of challenges and struggles. As a woman, your body goes through several changes during this time, especially during and after pregnancy and getting used to it can take a while. Just when you think the most difficult phase of delivering the baby is over, you start to realise that what follows is not a fluke. From sleepless nights to changing nappies, to understanding your baby, to breastfeeding and others chores. In fact, it is an endless list of things you need to take care of, coupled with your commitment, caring and patient.
Breastfeeding, also known as nursing is the act of feeding babies and young children with breast milk from a woman. It is highly recommend that breastfeeding should begin within the first hour of the baby’s life and continue as many times as the baby would want it. It is initially the only source of food that the baby can consume. It is considered healthy for the baby and is recommended by health practitioners. The reason is that breastfeeding gives babies a brain boost.
TIPS THAT WILL HELP IN NURSING A BABY
Ensure that you drink enough water: It’s very simple, to produce a lot of breast milk, you need a lot of water. The body also needs water otherwise, in order to keep all your body functions working efficiently. Also, make sure you keep your supply of water to the body at the maximum, before it can finally figure out how much water it is going to need to produce the milk.
Find the right position: Nursing requires you to hold your baby to your breasts for a very long time. It’s a common fact that the process can be tiring especially if you do not sit or lie down in a comfortable position. Uncomfortable positions can create problems for your neck and back, causing pain and sore muscles. It is important to find the right position to nurse your baby comfortably. Lying down with the baby on your side, facing towards you or reclining on a chair or a couch with the baby in your arms, are two most common positions that women prefer. You can mix it up according to your body and comfort.
Make time for yourself: While you are still pregnant with your baby, the body starts producing “colostrum”. Colostrum is the first form of milk produced by mammary glands. It is a nutrient-rich, syrupy compound that the baby needs in the first few days of the baby’s birth. While it does not take very long for the body to start producing milk, it can take a few days probably around five to six for some moms and that is normal. Therefore, try as much as possible to give your body the time it needs.
Give your baby chance to decide: Newborns are hungry a lot especially during the day which means you will have to nurse them more times than you thought. Have in mind that they too have a stomach, which needs refuelling every now and then. You must let your baby decide her needs when it comes to nursing. You should nurse the baby when she shows signs of hunger and not deprive her of the same because you have stipulated time duration when you will feed her. Similarly, you should not wake up the baby if she is sleeping or force nursing her just because it is time to feed her according to your schedule. Instead, allow your baby to decide when she wants the milk, how much and how frequently she needs it.
Always keep your nipples supple and tender: Sore nipples make the mother to feel pain, coupled with the already added struggle of having the baby. However, your own breast milk can work as a great moisturizer to keep the soreness away or you can apply a lotion if possible.
In case of any complications, consult your physician.