Family Matters | Jen Milligan
Breast Feeding Tips and
"A smile from my child, reminds me how rewarding parenting is"
How a baby feeds for the first few weeks is very different to how they then need to feed for the following 6 months:
The first two weeks for a baby and mum are all about establishing a milk supply and “getting the hang” of breastfeeding. Mum often needs to feed from both breasts to establish her supply. However, once her milk is established, it is very important that baby can get a “full feed” from one breast before moving to the second breast.
By providing a long feed on one breast, your baby gets a wonderful mix of the rich and fatty milk along with the more watery/sugary foremilk. A full feed from one side, before offering “dessert” on the other breast means baby is receiving ample calories to allow longer periods of sleep between feeds.
In addition, feeding in this way often relieves many upset tummy issues that may be caused by not allowing one breast to be drained before moving to the second breast.
Babies cry for more than just hunger:
It may be a need to sleep, a pain or a worry. Often, if you’re out & about, the crying bothers you more than anyone else and it’s easy to get flustered… fast! All babies cry—it’s their way of communicating a need… but they’re not always needing more milk.
If your toddler told you they were tired, and you responded by placing another meal in front of them, it probably wouldn’t end well. This is not too far removed from how a baby might feel when they’re crying because they’re tired and a teat or nipple is popped into their mouth. Whilst the sucking is temporarily soothing, the ingestion of more milk is often not.
We encourage mums to be intuitive; you know your baby best, and with a little bit of time and effort, you can learn to read your baby really well and respond appropriately.
Sucking doesn’t always mean hunger:
The sucking reflex is very strong for a newborn and mums are often not aware that the suck can be for comfort. It may help them drift off to sleep, or comfort them whilst they get that bothersome burp up. If your baby is needing to suck to deal with a sore tummy, a feed may even make it worse.
We encourage parents to assess whether their little one is wanting to suck because they’re needing milk, or if they’re needing to satisfy that strong urge to suck. Often, mum knows that her baby isn’t hungry, but having the confidence to go against comments from those around them can be very difficult in the early days.
Learn more from The Nurtury:
At The Nurtury, Jen Milligan (Midwife) and Ingrid Clark (birth & post-natal Doula) are passionate about helping new parents settle into their new role. They know it takes a village to raise a child! They love seeing positive change in families as they learn how to nurture and grow their new little baby.
The Nurtury runs early parenting courses over 5 weeks covering; feeding, sleep & settling, birth debrief & postnatal depression, starting solids and the importance of play. These classes are in Berkeley Vale in a beautiful and intimate setting tailored to your needs, complete with homemade cake and coffee.
The Nurtury also offers premium packages to pregnant women, where Jen and Ingrid can guide, nurture and encourage mums throughout the pregnancy and postnatal period in the comfort of their own home.
Jen and Ingrid have the joy of following up with many families through our 4-week toddler training classes in Wyong.