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August is National Breastfeeding Month, and there is no shortage of controversy attached to this subject. Some of the many include: Is breast really best, or is formula okay? Can you breastfeed in public? If you do, should you cover up? How long is it okay to breastfeed? Should employers provide a room for employees to pump? Should women publish or post breastfeeding photos? How old of a child is too old? Should you use surrogate breastfeeders or use milk from a milk bank?
There are so many opinions on this subject that it seems best to leave them all at the door. Breastfeeding and everything involved with it is a personal choice and one best made by each mama in hers and her child’s best interests. That said, the team at Preggers thought that the National Awareness Month deserved a little recognition, as well as a few tips to help out those mamas that choose this route.
7 Breastfeeding Tips for Mamas
- Lactation Consultants – For some mamas, breastfeeding is easy and natural. But, that doesn’t mean it is for all mamas. And that’s okay. There are a number of things that can make breastfeeding challenging for mom and baby. Lactation Consultants are great resources to help moms work through their challenges.
- Water – Drinking water is ALWAYS important, but most especially for nursing mamas. You can become dehydrated, which could affect your ability to produce milk.
- Food – You’re focused on making sure that your baby gets the nutrition and calories he needs, but it’s important to get enough for you both. Your baby will receive all the calories he needs from your breast milk. If you do not consume enough for you both, you will be lacking in the nutrients and calories needed for your body to function.
- Create a Breastfeeding On-the-Go Plan – It is not realistic to think it will always be quiet and private unless you’re planning to park it at home for the next several months. Decide what will be your breastfeeding plan when you’re on the go. Will you be comfortable with public breastfeeding? Will you always be searching for a private place to go? Will you use a cover? Don’t be afraid to do what makes you most comfortable. But, be aware that others may disagree.
- Pumps – You will probably want to invest in some sort of pump. Most likely you will be away from your child at some point before you’ve weaned him. You’ll need a pump to prevent yourself from becoming engorged, as well as to ensure your baby will be fed while you’re away. If you’ll be using it a lot – like a working mom – you’ll want a really good one. Don’t skimp, as it will become very necessary when you return to the workforce. If your moments away from baby will be few and far between, you can settle for a cheaper model or even a hand pump.
- Moisturize – It’s inevitable that your nipples will become dry and chapped at some point. Painful on its own, it’s even more so when trying to nurse an infant. Make sure you have nipple cream on hand for these moment. In a pinch, you can use olive oil or even your own breast milk.
- Nursing Bras and Tanks – You’ll pretty much live in these until you’re done nursing, so you’ll want to make sure you choose a few that meet all your needs. Fortunately, Preggers has options to match most needs. Comfort and good support are key features for the perfect daytime bra. Many women choose to wear a sleep bra through the night as well, opting for something with optimal comfort, but some support. A fantastic third option is the nursing tank. The right tank will provide good core support for a body that is gradually returning to its pre-pregnancy shape. The easy access straps mean you won’t have to practically undress at each feeding. A tank will also make a comfortable and nursing supportive “shirt” to wear under a zip-up sweatshirt, hoodie or cardigan sweater.
Preggers Comfort Nursing Bra – This everyday daytime bra is made from super soft and comfortable material. Better yet, it’s seamless, so you’ll have no uncomfortable seams to rub and irritate. A three-position back clasp and adjustable straps allow for a better fit. A front clip makes opening and closing the cup effortless, even with only one hand.
Preggers Sleep Nursing Bra – Look high and low and you won’t find a more comfortable sleeping option. The Sleep Bra offers light support and is made of super soft and seamless material for the optimum comfort. The smooth wide straps and high back help to keep it in place throughout the night. Instead of clasps or clips, the Sleep Bra offers easy front access simply by pulling the cup down.
Preggers Nursing Support Tank Top – This tank has so many great features. It’s made of the same super soft and seamless material, but also offers great elasticity and compression for your torso. It supports the abdomen and back to aid in recovering from pregnancy. Nursing access is by an easy pull down front. Classic black color is perfect for layering under a zip-up sweatshirt or cardigan.