There are many things that I think come naturally to being a mum. Those motherly instincts that kick in when your baby is born, and somehow the things you thought you would never know the answer to, become second nature. But there are also some things that just don’t come naturally and for some, can be a constant struggle no matter how many kids you’ve had. RIGHT??
Breastfeeding is one of the things I’ve struggled with with all three of my babies to some degree or another. With Noah, my first born, I struggled for months to get him to latch properly and so for those first few months endured the agony of cracked and bleeding nipples and too much milk to know what to do with it. I also expressed too much (to relieve the engorgement) which only resulted in more milk. It took ages to regulate. Then with Brody, my boobs took a beating once again as I struggled to position him properly for the first few weeks. So I wasn’t expecting it to be smooth sailing with Hunter either. I mean I knew I would get it right eventually but I also prepared myself for the worst.
But, as it turns out there were a few things different about my breastfeeding journey this time. Beside the initial first few days of your nipples feeling like they are being bitten off by a little monkey, within days my milk flow had regulated, my boobs were no longer engorged and my nipples were in perfect shape. There were maybe two days were I struggled and had to change feeding position (to the rugby ball pose) to get her latch right but besides that, I’m so grateful that I didn’t have to endure weeks of pain. So what was different about this time? What did I do differently? Here are FOUR things that I used/did differently as I began my breastfeeding journey for the third time:
- I used a manual pump (Medela Harmony) to relieve engorged boobs! I’m pretty sure this is what helped regulate my milk so perfectly (and so quickly) this time. Using an electric pump to soon for the purposes of relieving your oversupply of milk, may be too strong. Using a manual pump is more gentle (yet still effective) and allows you more control over your expressing technique. Maybe it was just my experience, but having my Medela Harmony pump was lifesaver for those first few weeks. (And you don’t need to plug it in!!) *On this note – if your boobs are super engorged, lie boobs down in a very hot bath and massage the sides from the armpit down. Milk will eventually flow out! You may want to alternate this method with manual pumping and follow it with a soothing ice-pack. Remember that severely engorged breasts make it almost impossible for baby to latch properly and can also lead to mastitis and that ain’t fun!
- I used a feeding pillow. And not just any feeding pillow, this cool Jean Kelly feeding pillow that takes feeding cushions to a whole new level! Designed to fit like an armband, it’s easy to slip on and offers you the perfect solution to your baby being too low. If your baby is not at the right angle, the chances of them latching perfectly are pretty slim. The Jean Kelly Feeding pillow also makes it much more comfortable for both you and your baby. I think especially as your baby grows and becomes heavier, holding their heads up for the duration of their feed can become exhausting. This lovely pillow allows your baby to lay comfortably and your arm to relax while feeding!
- I used nipple shields for a day that my boobs were in agony. Some people warn against them as they say they can confuse a baby more, but in my experience they really worked and gave my nipples the much needed break of feeling like they were being burnt off with a tazer gun every time she latched. It must be said that I didn’t have a fussy baby though when it came to alternating between dummies, boob, bottles etc… I know some babe are more sensitive to this so read your situation differently.
- I took the advise I got from our Photo-therapist/midwife who visited our home (four times) to see to Hunter’s jaundice in our first week. She suggested I try different angles/positions of feeding her. My boobs were probably the most engorged and sore at this time and her advice to try the rugby ball pose on and off for a few days made the world of difference. If you think about it, if your baby keeps latching onto the same piece of cracked skin, there is no time for that area to heal between feeds. By changing position, your baby latches on to a new area allowing your cracks to heal.
Madela and Jean Kelly have offered the chance for you to WIN a Harmony pump and feeding pillow in the efforts to help you on your breastfeeding journey! Here’s what you gonna have to do to WIN this awesome prize valued at over R1000!
- Like both Medela and Jean Kelly on Facebook.
- Tag two moms in the comments on the Facebook thread. (Pinned to The top of The Mom Diaries Page)
- Like and share the post on Facebook.
T’s and C’s
- You need to follow al three steps in order to qualify for the prize
- Competition is open to South African residence only
- Winner is chosen randomly via random.org and my decision is final.
- Competition closes on Wednesday 30th August at noon.