Thursday, March 22, 2012

Breastfeeding a newborn

Something has been in the Mummie's Nummies water.... well something WAS in the water...... 9 months ago! HEHE. A good number of Mummies have given birth the past few weeks (and more are only weeks away from entering the Mummie's Nummies world), which means NEW NUMMIE LOVERS! I thought it was a GREAT time to post about newborns and breastfeeding.

First...
Falling asleep while nursing

 It is VERY common for a new nummie lover to fall asleep at the breast. The simple feeling of being close to Mummie and suckling/feeding can be very relaxing. Which can make the new baby very sleepy. While it is very common.... it can also become an issue down the road. The nummie lover can get to the point where she/he associates breastfeeding with sleeping, and before you know it your sweet little Nummie Lover will ONLY be able to fall asleep while at the breast. This is called "Sucking-To-Sleep Association." This can be a struggle for many parents, when the baby gets older, as she/he will not fall asleep (or stay asleep) any other way. I went through this with both of  my girls. In the early weeks, they both PASSED OUT minutes into nursing. I went into the "Oh no you don't" mind set and found ways to correct this. (I got some weird looks and some comments of "Why don't you juts let her sleep?" when other saw my "tactics.") When I found my girls falling asleep, I would un-latch them (using the pinky method... Stick your clean pinkie into the corner of their mouth and gently pull to the side to break the latch) then I would lift them up into the air and carefully lower them and repeat. Or I would use a cool/wet cloth (or wipie) and wipe their skin. Really anything that would wake them up (or tick them off) enough to stay awake and finish nursing. It took a couple of weeks.... but they BOTH got into a routine to where they would nurse, stay awake for an hour to play, take a nap and wake up hungry and the process was repeated.

Second....
How many times a day should they be nursing?

Being breastfed, most breastfeed babies will eat MORE often than compared to formula fed babies. The reason for this is that breastmilk is  easier to digest than formula, which means their little tummies "empty" faster. In the beginning, Nummie Lovers may want to nurse every 1-1.5 hours. This is NORMAL and has NOTHING to do with your milk supply. If she/he wants to eat... by all means go ahead. You can feed on demand or try to set a "schedule" ( I fed on a schedule.....after a few weeks. It is up to you and your Nummie Lover to decide which method works for you.)

Third....
Is my Nummie Lover getting enough?

The best way to answer this question is by counting wet diapers. If you are using cloth diapers.... 8 or more wet diapers (in 24 hours) means your baby is getting enough. If you use disposable diapers then 6 or more wet diapers (in 24 hours) means your baby is getting enough. Also do NOT count on bowel movements to be an indicator. It is not unheard of for a breastfed baby to go TEN days between poopies. But if you are concerned about the amount of (or lack thereof) poopie diapers...... contact your Pediatrician. (Pooker once went TEN days in between poops!)

Fourth....
Which position is best?

There are MANY positions in which to use, while breastfeeding. If you have a sick baby, like I did, position can mean EVERYTHING! 
Here are some breastfeeding positions.

Cross Cradle Hold: 
The cross-cradle hold is ideal for early breast-feeding. Sit up straight in a comfortable chair with armrests. Hold your baby crosswise in the crook of the arm opposite the breast you're feeding from — left arm for right breast, right arm for left. Support the baby's trunk and head with your forearm and palm. Place your other hand beneath your breast in a U-shaped hold and guide the baby's mouth to your breast. Don't bend over or lean forward. Instead, cradle your baby close to your breast.

Cradle Hold:
The cradle hold is similar to the cross-cradle hold, but you support the baby with the arm on the same side as the nursing breast, rather than the opposite arm. As with the cross-cradle hold, sit up straight — preferably in a chair with armrests. Cradle your baby and rest his or her head in the crook of your elbow while he or she faces your breast. For extra support, place a pillow on your lap.

Football Hold:

This position may be a good choice if you're recovering from a C-section, you have large breasts or you're nursing two babies at once.
Hold your baby at your side, with your elbow bent. With your open hand, support your baby's head and face him or her toward your breast. Your baby's back will rest on your forearm. It may help to support your breast in a C-shaped hold with your other hand. For comfort, put a pillow on your lap and use a chair with broad, low arms.

Side-Lying Hold:
Lie on your side and face your baby toward your breast, supporting him or her with the hand of the arm you're resting on. With your other arm and hand, grasp your breast and then touch your nipple to your baby's lips. Once your baby latches on, use the bottom arm to support your own head and your top hand and arm to help support the baby.


Or you can always do the "Jacky Sit" hold:
 Both of my daughters were/are nursed on an incline. I had/have them almost in a sitting position with their bottoms resting on my thigh. But I give you permission to change the name. *wink wink*


I hope this helps...... even "been there/done that" Mummies sometimes need a refresher crash course on breastfeeding. Just do the best you can and try to relax. Your new little nummie lover is new at the whole breastfeeding thing too. Give each other a couple of weeks to "iron out the kinks."


Big (but gentle) hugs to all the new and soon to be new Nummie Lovers!!


~Mummie

3 comments:

  1. My son nurses to sleep still (10 mo) and I don't mind it. Eventually he'll fall asleep on his own. I'm in no rush. And I enjoy our late night cuddle times.

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  2. Thanks ever, i have a Newborn Baby and was looking for "How many times a day should they be nursing" thanks for the most perfect answers! Lisa

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    1. SO glad I was able to help you out Lisa!

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Thanks for commenting!