BIRTH AND BREASTFEEDING

Breastfeeding is normal, but it may take time for you and baby to learn.

 

GET COMFORTABLE.

Have the front of baby’s body touching the front of your body. 

Touch your nipple just under baby’s nose. This helps baby open wide. Bring baby’s body in as close as possible to help get your breast deep inside baby’s mouth.

Breastfeeding should not hurt.

 

BREASTFEED EARLY AND OFTEN.

In the first few days your body makes concentrated “first milk” called colostrum.

Colostrum protects baby from sickness and comes in small amounts. 

Lay your baby against you, skin-to-skin. This can help baby breastfeed well.

Encourage baby to breastfeed 10 or more times in 24 hours.

You can make breastfeeding at night easier by keeping baby close to you.

The more often your baby breastfeeds, the more milk you will make. 

Baby will usually finish the first breast and stop breastfeeding when she has had enough.

Offer the second breast. She will drink from the second breast if she wants more.

 

IS BABY HUNGRY?

If baby starts to move more, wriggles and sucks his fists, offer your breast.

Breastfeed your baby before he starts crying – crying means baby is desperate.

Baby could need to breastfeed more at different times of the day, especially in the evening. This is because breastfeeding is not only food. It protects your baby from illness and makes him feel safe.

Some days you will find that baby needs to drink more. This is normal – each day will not be exactly the same. Adults also drink and eat differently all the time.

 

IS BABY GETTING ENOUGH MILK?

You should be able to see and hear your baby swallowing when breastfeeding.

After the first week, baby should have at least 3 yellow dirty nappies and 6 wet nappies every day.  

Baby should get back to birth weight by 7 to 14 days after birth.  

Babies who do not get enough milk, may not have a lot of energy, especially if they are tightly wrapped up in blankets. If you are worried, unwrap your baby and hold him in skin-to-skin contact. This will encourage him to drink better and gain weight.

If baby is not breastfeeding well, you can hand express your milk and feed this to baby using a spoon or plastic cup. 

 

DOES BABY NEED WATER OR OTHER FOOD?

Your baby does not need water or other food until around 6 months. Giving water to a young baby might make your baby drink less breast milk. When baby drinks less milk, your body starts making less milk.