Re: BF questions
posted at 2/5/2013 12:54 PM EST
I applaud you for trying to breastfeed this time! As I've said before, I had a really hard time nursing #1, but #2 has been a totally different experience, so the first doesn't necessarily dictate the next.
In answer to your questions:
- get baby to latch ASAP...it helps with everything, from stimulating milk production, to helping you uterus contract. With the twins, they might have had to take them right away...when I had my c-section with DD, she never left me until I asked for her to go to the nursery.
- you can still send baby to the nursery at night and ask them to bring him/her to you to eat. Realistically, they're in checking your vitals and all that all the time anyway...see if they can time all that to come together.
- Ask for a pump in your room. Try to nurse, then pump right away. It really helps give your body the idea that baby needs more to have nursing and pumping happening as much as possible.
- Take advantage of the 4 days in the hospital for the c-section. I'd give it all you've got for those 4 days. Your milk should come in while you're there, you won't have toddlers all over you, and you'll start to get a sense of the rhythm of nursing and pumping.
- Use the nipple shield. LC's hate for you to use it, but I found that it really helped with my confidence, which meant that I stuck with nursing longer, and soon wouldn't need it. I'd use the shield on the first side, when baby was hungrier and less patient, then would try without it on the second side. Within about 3 weeks, I wasn't using it at all, but it helped me get more confidence.
- if baby's getting frustrated trying to latch on, give some pumped milk/formula (I'd do an ounce or so) then try again. Like the above advice, if s/he's too hungry, it's hard to concentrate and there's more screaming. When there's more screaming, it stresses you out, and there's less milk. I would give about an ounce before a feeding to keep the baby calm...and again, after about 3-4 weeks, we knew what we were doing together, and I could drop that pre-feed.
- Don't be afraid to supplement and keep trying. I have a low supply, so I would offer a bottle after every feeding, just to see if he was still hungry. After a couple of weeks, I got a good sense of when he needed it (mid-day seems to be my worst) and when he didn't (mornings and evenings, we were all good)...now with daycare, it works great, b/c I nurse when I'm home and he's getting bottles in the daytime. I only pump twice a day at work (now 5 months PP) and give myself a chance to get pretty full between pumps/feeds. Even though it's a mix of nursing and formula, I still find it so much easier (and so many less bottles to wash) doing the combo than I did doing all bottles (mix of pumped and formula) last time.
- they way it works for others may not work for you. My pediatrician kept telling me to nurse then pump then supplement. I hated that routine, so I figured out my own. Benefit of it not being the first time around is that I had more confidence in my skills as a parent and was more willing to figure it out for myself, and less afraid of the baby or that I was failing somehow. Confidence is huge!!