Breast milk is the baby food loaded with necessary proteins, fats, sugars, nutrients and antibodies, in appropriate proportions as needed by an infant.
Since a baby cannot have solid foods until the age of 6 months or beyond, therefore, breast milk meets the optimal nutritional demands of the baby's life.
Is breastfeeding important?
There cannot be one ideal way or a wrong way to feed your baby. Firstly, you need to experiment and find out what works for you and your little one. It's better to know a range of breastfeeding techniques and positions as you might start taking your kid out in public more often as he/she starts growing up.
There are different types of breastfeeding postures appropriated by different mothers. These can be laid back breastfeeding, side-lying position, upright breastfeeding, dangle feeding, cradle cross-cradle and more.
The most preferred and talked about is the one where the toddler is positioned facing the mother's body while their hips, head and shoulders lie in alignment with each other.
Breastfeeding posture is important because it has much to do with a mother's postpartum stress and recovery. It's very important for a new mother not to stress her body out while being in the same position for hours.
Always focus on bringing the baby closer to your breast, and not bending over to him in order to put your breast in their mouth. Before you tuck your kid in a comfortable and stable position, you must get relaxed. You need to make sure that breastfeeding should not cause you any sort of pain.
So flex yourself in your comfortable armchair, grab a book or magazine, your mobile phone or T.V remote. Make sure that your child is in a good latching position and starts to suck with a wide-open mouth.
While you make sure to get your milk flowing, you should also make certain not to wake up with neck, shoulder or back pain. One thing that can help your child to lay comfortably is a good nursing pillow. A good comfy pillow lifts the baby to an appropriate height, making it easier for you to build your posture.
Nursing pillow and its uses
Nursing pillows can make breastfeeding a lot easier, especially when it's done being seated. While shopping for a nursing pillow, there are particular things which are needed to be kept in mind:
Size and shape: Depends on whether you're willing to wrap it around your waist, or trying to snuggle the baby on your stomach with its support. The two most common types are U and O shaped. C shaped pillow hugs the front of your body, O wraps entirely around your middle section.
Material: Look for the pillow which is easier to clean or the one that comes with a removable cover as babies tend to salivate and the milk often gets spilt. Choose the material which can be machine washed and dried rapidly.
Adjustable: Look for a pillow that can raise the baby to different heights, depending on your position. Some of the good pillows come with three different elevations, creating more favourable positions for nursing mothers.
Design and style: Nursing pillows are often covered in beautiful fabric, which comes in different designs, colours and prints.
For new moms, experiencing the breasts to become heavy, hard and large, can be stressful, at times. It usually happens due to increased blood flow towards the nipples.
Swollen breasts can also be a result of a temporary oversupply of milk, or when your baby misses the feed.
In order to relieve the pain due to breast soreness, you can take warm showers, or use your fingers to release the pressure you feel in-between the feeds, or you can ingest pain-relieving medicines.