Common Questions and Concerns of Breastfeeding Mothers
How long should I breastfeed?
- Your doctor may recommend breastfeeding for the first year of your baby's life.
- Any amount of breastfeeding is better than none.
When Do I Start?
- It's a good idea to talk about breastfeeding with your health care provider before you have your baby.
- This way you can have a good idea of what to expect.
- When you arrive at the hospital, tell the nurses that you plan to breastfeed.
- Ask them to not feed your baby formula and to avoid giving a pacifier.
How do I Start?
- Being close with your baby as soon as possible after delivery gets breastfeeding off to the best start.
- Ask the hospital staff for help with putting your baby to the breast as soon as possible after delivery.
- Some hospitals place your baby on your stomach in the delivery room.
- Believe it or not, your baby will naturally crawl to your breast and begin feeding.
- Keep baby in your room during the day and night so you can feed often.
- It takes a few days for baby and mom to get used to each other so be patient
- Practice makes perfect
Will it Hurt?
- You may have tender nipples in the first few days, but soreness and pain should not be part of the breastfeeding process.
- If you experience these, you need to get some help.
- Most often it is a simple matter of changing baby's feeding position.
- Until you and your baby get to know each other, it may take some practice for your baby to learn to latch on and nurse easily.
- Contact your WIC clinic or peer counselor for help (click)
How do I Know I Have Enough Milk?
- Feeding often is the way to build your milk supply.
- Newborn babies will want to eat every 2 to 3 hours or 8 to 12 times in 24 hours.
- In the beginning, feedings will last about 30 minutes.
- Nursing for as long and as often as baby wants is important.
- Your breasts will adjust to make the amount of milk your baby wants and needs.
- Your baby may nurse more often during growth spurts and your body will adjust to increase your milk supply.
Can I go Back to Work or School?
- Breastfeeding does not have to end because you want to go back to work or school.
- You can do what works best for you.
- Many mothers pump their breastmilk and store it in bottles when they return to work or school.
- These should be kept in the refrigerator or freezer for use when you can't be there to