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Breastfeeding - FAQ


Breastfeeding - FAQ

There are many benefits to breastfeeding. Even if you are able to do it for only a short time, your baby's immune system can benefit from breast milk. Here are several common breastfeeding questions along with answers!
 

 
Why should I breastfeed?

Breast milk is the most complete form of nutrition for infants. Breast milk has just the right amount of fat, sugar, water, and protein that is needed for a baby's growth and development.

Does breastfeeding hurt?

Breastfeeding does not hurt. There may be some tenderness at first, but it should gradually go away as the days go by. Your breasts and nipples are designed to deliver milk to your baby. When your baby is breastfeeding effectively, it should be calming and comfortable for both of you. If breastfeeding becomes painful for you, seek help from someone who is knowledgeable about breastfeeding. 

How do I know if my baby is getting enough?

At first you will be feeding your baby colostrum, your first milk that is precious thick yellowish milk. Even though it looks like only a small amount, this is the only food your baby needs.

You can tell your baby is getting enough milk by keeping track of the number of wet and dirty diapers. In the first few days, when your milk is low in volume and high in nutrients, your baby will have only 1 or 2 wet diapers a day. After your milk supply has increased, your baby should have 5 to 6 wet diapers and 3 to 4 dirty diapers every day. Consult your pediatrician if you are concerned about your baby's weight gain.

After you and your baby go home from the hospital, your baby still needs to eat about every one to two hours and should need several diaper changes. You still may need to wake your baby to feed him or her because babies are usually sleepy for the first month. In the early weeks after birth, you should wake your baby to feed if four hours have passed since the beginning of the feeding. If you are having a hard time waking your baby, you can try undressing or wiping his or her face with a cool washcloth. If your baby falls asleep while breastfeeding, you can try breast compression. As your milk comes in after the baby is born, there will be more and more diaper changes. The baby’s stools will become runny, yellowish, and may have little white bumpy “seeds.”

Overall, you can feel confident that your baby is getting enough to eat because your breasts will regulate the amount of milk your baby needs. If your baby needs to eat more or more often, your breasts will increase the amount of milk they produce. To keep up your milk supply when you give bottles of expressed breast milk for feedings, pump your milk when your baby gets a bottle of breast milk.

Is it safe to take medications while breastfeeding?

Make sure you always  talk with your doctor before taking any medications. Most medications pass into your milk in small amounts.

Can I breastfeed even if my breasts are small?

Breast size is not related to the ability to produce milk for a baby. Breast size is determined by the amount of fatty tissue in the breast, not by the amount of milk. Most women, with all sizes of breasts, can make enough milk for their babies.

 


 
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