Fed is Best!
There has been a lot of debate and discussion around the ‘how to feed your baby’ and ‘what to feed your baby’ topic – our vote is Fed is Best!
As a new mum who has just been through 40 weeks of pregnancy, hormonal changes, labour and giving birth you feel an enormous amount of pressure to breast feed your baby.
You hold your baby, and reality sets in… what am I suppose to do, this baby is totally dependent on me and all the control you had up until this point has gone out the window.
The lactation classes you attended have gone out the window and everything they told you really doesn’t happen the way they explain, I mean seriously a baby’s mouth doesn’t open up perfectly to the size of your nipple, your baby doesn’t stay in one spot like the doll they were using and exhaustion has truly set in.
I think – just my opinion – is that all of mums want everything to go perfect and would like to opt for breast feeding. Sometimes this just doesn’t happen for everyone. As mums we put so much pressure on ourselves to live up to these high expectations but in reality we are only human and can only do what we can do.
I did manage to successfully breast feed my baby but it wasn’t not without constant difficulty. The first 6 weeks were the hardest and no one or nothing can prepare you for it.
Firstly my milk came in and I got engorgement, wow there is no words to describe the pain I felt and the nurses at the hospital are telling you it is ok and it is normal… if felt nothing like normal. I was told to pump to help reduce the swelling and it did a little but it also pulled down more milk. I got to the stage where I just pumped all my milk out and started again. You will get told not to do this and I am not saying you should but it did work for me. Also it is a great way to get some milked stored away in breast milk storage bags for your baby if you decide to take a feed off.
Secondly my baby didn’t latch properly, was it me? was it the baby? was it the 10 000 confusing and contradictory ways I was getting told how to do it. One tip I do have is, if you feel any slight bit of pain, even just a little tingle pull your baby off and try again as you baby isn’t on properly. If you end up with grazed nipples ask for Laser Treatment, helps the healing of your nips and is covered by most insurance company’s.
Thirdly my mother wanted me to use nipple shields but the nurses were dead against them as they can cause nipple confusion, after 4 days of me being in tears and getting to the point where I didn’t even want to put my baby near me my mum brought me some in and I started using them. They enabled me to breast feed and protected me during feeding and also helped my baby latch better.
When we finally left the hospital I again didn’t listen to what I was told and tried to continue my everyday life, doing the cleaning, laundry, cooking etc etc and not sleeping when my baby slept and not eating like I should… well this resulted in my milk almost driving up and me being stubborn and not wanting my baby to be formula fed, then after 2 hours of trying to feed with no milk coming through we dashed off to a 24 hour chemist (at 4am) to get formula and a bottle. My baby drank like she never had before.
Ultimately it is your choice how you decide to feed your baby and it doesn’t matter which option you choose. As long as your baby is fed that is the most important thing. Fed is Best!