57 answers

Breastfeeding - Tuba City, AZ

What to do to get ready to breastfeed? I'm expecting my 3rd child in September. With my previous two kids, I had trouble breastfeeding them, weren't latching on right I guess. When they would, it would really hurt and then get cracked leaving scabs around the nipple area which hurt really bad. So I would quit only after a couple days after they were born. Couldn't take the pain. And I also tried pumping my breasts but would get very little from both, only about 1 to 2 oz.
This time around I'd like to breastfeed to avoid the hassel of formula and bottle making. Anyone got any suggestions on how to deal with this type of problem (latching on, preventing soreness, cracked nipples) or how I should prepare myself when the birth comes? Or what types of food I should start eating to get more milk production?

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Featured Answers

Hi M.,
First thing I would recomend is to go to a breasfeeding class, they are not very expensive and they give you a lot of information. I didn't take on and wish I had to make things easier on me when I started to breastfeed. They'll give you a lot of information about getting a good supply of milk, latching on, etc.
Good luck and be patient, once you start breastfeeding it might take a couple of weeks before it's pain free but you'll get there.

my advice is to keep at it no mater what. I breastfed all my kids. I just had my 4th child 6 weeks ago and had sore nipples for the first 3 weeks. I read the advice from some of the other ladies and all of it is great from the teas for more milk to the creams for sore nipples. you will do fine if you just stay determined and don't give up.

I don't know that there is anything you can do prior to prepare. But I can say that if you can get past the 1st 2 weeks of pain it should be smooth sailing after that. With my 3rd I cried everytime I had to feed her the first couple of weeks because the pain was so bad but I stuck it out and it paid off I was able to breastfeed her for 13 months. Hang in there that is all the advise I can give you it does it less painful! Good luck!

More Answers

Fenegreek (the spice...but also found in capsules in health food stores) can increase milk production. Hospital births and polices decrease breastfeeding success...home birthing with midwifery support has a better record...but if you are going to the hospital (as most American women think they must) at least find a hospital with real effective breastfeeding support...even AFTER you leave the hospital...like a hotline...or better yet...a person to come and see you at home!
If the place you are going to does not have that...hire your own lactation specialist to come and see you...they charge by the hour...do home visits...and are worth it. You can find them online..or see La Leche League etc for referrals. Midwives...even if you do not use one...will gladly make recommendations for free as well. They helped me with miscarriage advice for free.
Latch probs are common...see info on infant self-attachment. These little newborns have instinctive programming to latch on if we just give them more opportunity for skin-to-skin contact and time to reach the nipple themselves. Hospitals and even some midwives are in a hurry to see the infant at the breast...they do not allow time for this. See swedish studies on this. or google baby/infant-led breast feeding. Let nature help you! There is all this info on directions for moms concerning latching, switching breasts etc...take a break from some of that. :)

1 mom found this helpful

Hi there, 1st of all CONGRATS on baby 2nd That is great you are going to breastfeed!!!! Do not let what happened in the past interfere, get some Lansinoh (thats the best brand) lanolin breast cream you can get it at target walmart walgreens you can put it on right now if you like, the brand Lansinoh also makes the best nursing pads. Read all you can on breastfeeding and as soon as you have that baby ask to speak to a lactation nurse!!!! DO NOT get upset if it takes a bit of time you can do it! There really arent any foods that will help with the milk just you being relaxed will let that milk come down, if you must pump get an electric one much better than hand held!! CONGRATS!!

I also experienced difficulty breastfeeding my first child. I was very sore (cracked nipples and bleeding also), which led to me being stressed and frustrated and not able to produce enough milk. It was a chain reaction really. With my second child, I was determined to get through the rough part and succeed in breastfeeding her. She is 8 weeks today, and the nursing is going GREAT! That is not to say that we didn't have a few bumps along the way. I would recommend seeking help from a lactation consultant frequently after the birth. I went even if things were going well because I just wanted to check in and make sure things looked right to them. Also, using a nipple shield in the beginning helps tremendously with the sore nipple problem. Finally, you seem very determined which is half the battle. Just be really patient, and know that you CAN have a different breastfeeding experience than you've had in the past!

I will say that there is a period of 2-3 weeks of discomfort. Stick it out though, as the benefits are well worth the temp. pain. Your nipples are just getting used to being sucked on, they "toughen" up in a few weeks. Make sure that you ask the nurses at the hospital to help you with your baby's latch. I had one nurse spend probably close to 5 hours working with my daughter and me because she was having trouble latching on. If your hospital has a lactation consultant, ask for that person's assistance. Of course when I delivered they lactation consultant had called in sick. Because we were having so much trouble and I asked if there were any other resources for help, they ended up sending the lactation consultant from the NICU over to help me. It was a struggle at first, but by the time we left the hospital, we had just gotten the hang of it. My baby girl is now 3 months old and I love breastfeeding! It is such a warm, yummy feeling and time for she and I to bond. Hang in there and endure the pain for a few weeks and you'll reap the rewards in the long run! Good luck!

Get the book So That's What They're For by Janet Tamaro. When my midwife asked me if I had done any research and I told her I was just going to figure it out, she laughed at me and gave me that book. It told me everything I needed to know and I've now been breastfeeding for 4.5 months and love the special bond with my son. The book gave me encouragement to keep going through the hard part which was the first 3 weeks for me.

Here's the book on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Thats-What-Theyre-Definitive-Breast...

Also the Earth Mama, Angel Baby nipple cream prevented me from getting cracked or bleeding nipples. And it doesn't hurt the baby, so you don't have to wash it off like you do the lanisoh cream. http://www.earthmamaangelbaby.com/

And you only pumping 1-2oz at first is very normal. A newborn baby's stomach is only 2 oz at the most!

Good luck!

I also had some trouble breastfeeding - here is what I did - I hope it helps (I am in Mesa, AZ and if you ever want to chat- feel free to e-mail me ____@____.com - I found that support was the biggest help :-)
0- see if there is a La Leche League near you - you can attend meetings before your little one is born and get comfortable with the women there- then it will be easier to ask for help when the time comes. and READ good books on the subject so you can see what common problems are- then you are more aware if they start to happen to you.
1- ask to see the lactation consultant at the hospital - if there isn't one- ask to talk to the nurse with the most experience in breastfeeding. This doesn't guarantee success- but it helps you get started right. EVERYTHING changes when your milk comes in at 3-4 days. It is totally normal to only get a small amount in the beginning because they don't eat very much at one time. get some lanolin (there is a brand that comes in a purple tube you can get in almost any baby section) - it really helps with pain - I put it directly on the breastpad - then put that on. sometimes it hurts to rub it directly on your sore boobs.
2- I was having TONS of pain right after I got home from the hospital - I made an appointment with a lactation consultant 1 week after my son was born and it was the best $60 I ever spent! She identified where we were having trouble and gave me some strategies to deal with it. THe pump also helped - when I felt like I just couldn't take another feeding it gave me an alternative.
3- keep breastfeeding! If yo skip feedings or supplement your supply will go away instead of building up like it should. It is painful at first (I wasn't totally comfortable until about 3+months - but dealt with thrush and other stuff too :-( but it is so much easier than bottles once it gets more comfortable.

Yes, it hurts... and there's no way around that. Sorry :( But 1-2 oz the first few weeks is usually okay!!! Don't get discouraged. Make sure everyone around you knows that this is a priority for you, and they need to do what it takes to help you out... watch the kids, make meals, give you alone time with the baby to really connect and find out what will work best for you and this baby. Every baby is different. I saw a lactation consultant in the hospital before I went home and had her number handy when I had questions or needed help and it was a lifesaver. I got her number from my midwife... maybe your physician has a contact like that for you. Good luck!

You can watch free videos here to help you with your latch: http://www.breastfeeding.com/ . Also, you can drink Mother's milk tea to help with your milk production. It does hurt a bit in the beginning, but don't give up!!!!! Many babies have trouble latching the first few days, but trust me, they get it fast! Before you know it, you are both pros! Try contacting your local La Leche League if you find yourself ready to give up. you can do it!

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