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April 11th, 2012, 12:32 PM
silverlife silverlife is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 7,051
Anyone have any tips for breastfeeding? Ask to see the lactation consultant right away, before any problems can pop up. Sometimes it takes a day for her to get to you (they often don't work 40 hour weeks). She'll be able to show you different positions and assess baby's latch.

Tips for going from breast to pump? Some women can get milk with a pump no problem and some women just don't respond well to the pump. For me the trick is to relax as much as possible.

What was your breastfeeding experience?

With my son I had to fight to breastfeed. He had tongue tie, which is when the skin on the bottom of the tongue extends too far. He couldn't get his tongue past his gums and so he was literally gnawing on me rather than suckling. Luckily the lactation consultant diagnosed it and we were able to see an ear-nose-throat doctor to get it fixed when he was 2-days old. It still took him several weeks to learn to use his tongue properly. During that time it was a big struggle for me. I had open sores from trying to nurse him and eventually had to pump and feed him that way so I could heal. If you ever have to rely exclusively on pumping anytime in the first month you'll want to rent a hospital grade pump. They're strong enough to establish a supply when most consumer pumps are not. Anyway, I pumped and finger fed him because I was terrified that giving him a bottle would make his latch worse. Eventually (I think around week 3) I gave up gave him a bottle. When it was time to switch back to the breast, he did a good job without any issues--but that's not always the case with babies that don't get to nurse a lot in the first month.

With my daughter it was so smooth. No pain, my milk came in a lot quicker, no thrush or tongue tie like I dealt with with my son. With both my children I had oversupply, but I knew how to handle it better with my daughter. I would only nurse her on one side with each feeding, to ensure that she got enough hindmilk (the fatty stuff that comes out later in the feeding) and not too much foremilk (the watery milk that comes out first). If I were in need of a supply of frozen milk, I probably would have nursed on one side and pumped on the other with each feeding. With only nursing her on one side, my supply eventually (maybe after 2-3 months?) cut back to where I could nurse her on both sides and no longer had oversupply.

Tips for storing milk? For pumping at work, get a lot of bottles that hook directly to the pump. Once you get home, transfer the milk into milk storage freezer bags, label with the date, and freeze laying flat. Thaw frozen milk either in the fridge (if you have time to wait) or by placing the sealed bag in a bowl of water. One thing that I found that made bottle feeding easier with my son was that I got him used to cold milk. That way I didn't have to warm up every bottle of milk I gave him.

Another thing to mention, my daughter did not get offered a bottle for a while and wound up refusing them. It worked okay for me because I work from home, but if I needed to have my baby take a bottle, I would introduce one probably around 3-4 weeks or so.
Mama to an elementary school boy, kindergarten girl, and my miracle toddler girl.
Three 10w losses (11/2010 + 8/2011 + 10/2014)
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