Breast Feeding Your Baby


Why every woman should breast feed her baby -
       for at least the fi
rst six months....
  • Breast feeding is the healthiest, safest, cheapest and most convenient thing you can do for your baby - and yourself.  Breast feeding will protect your baby from many childhood and adult diseases, including diabetes, asthma and allergies, and obesity. 
  • Breast milk contains exactly the right kind of proteins and sugars for human babies, and it is 'living' food - not treated or sterilized, which kills some of the organisms that make breast milk so perfect. 
  • Breast milk is also safe, in terms of not having to worry about contamination which can happen during processing and packaging of food items.
  • Breastfeeding is also the healthiest choice for mum. 
  • It helps her return to her normal self sooner (breastfeeding uses a lot of calories!), and helps to prevent breast and other cancers. 
  • And breast feeding is also the easiest thing to do: your breasts are always with you, the milk and the containers don't have to be sterilized every time you use them.
  • Best of all, they're in a convenient location when you're holding your baby!
 



Breast Feeding Information

The following links will provide you with the some of the best information about breastfeeding I have found. 

For some great videos on how to breastfeed, go to:

For the basics of good breast feeding, the best website is the one by Dr. Jack Newman and Edith Kernerman, two Canadian and world-renowned breast feeding experts.  Go to:  www.nbci.ca  

Other good sites include:  
The popular and easily accessible  www.kellymom.com   and  www.breastfeedingonline
La Leche League's sites   www.lllc.ca   and   www.lli.org/nb.html
An Australian site    www.breastfeeding.asn.au


Luna Lactation:  This is a great website for information and resources on breastfeeding, especially on breastfeeding challenges:  http://www.lunalactation.com/resources/ 


The Microbiome: Optimizing Your Baby's Health Before, During and After Birth
The "microbiome" is the collection of bacteria, fungi and other organisms that live in and on all of our bodies.  A healthy microbiome is critical to overall good health, and in particular to a healthy and effective immune system.  We know that the pregnant woman's microbiome changes during pregnancy to prepare for the sharing of 'good' bacteria with her baby.  This starts happening as soon as her waters break, and continues to happen as the baby passes through the birth canal, is placed skin-to-skin with its mother, and breastfeeds.  We are now beginning to understand that some of the interventions we use, including C-section deliveries, separation of mothers and babies after birth, formula feeding, and the administration of antibiotics can all interfere with the healthy transfer of the mother's microbiome to the baby.  To understand more about this and what you can do to ensure your baby gets the best start possible, check out this website:

Here is an article about breastfeeding and its importance to the baby's microbiome:  http://www.newyorker.com/tech/elements/breast-feeding-the-microbiome

Cup Feeding Your Baby
If you are unable to breast feed your newborn and need to supplement, but would prefer not to use a bottle, you might want to consider cup feeding.  This is a video that shows you how to do it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ZCm_MhP39M

If you are pumping, make sure your breast pump fits your breasts!
Here's a link to a good site about how to measure your nipples to make sure you get a breast pump flange that fits.  If it doesn't fit, pumping can be painful, and you may not get as much milk as you will with a properly fitting pump.  http://blog.medelabreastfeedingus.com/2015/05/medela-breastshield-sizing-guide/#.V1rSfLad6Fy

If you are having a problem with supply:  
Here's a link to a website with all sorts of products to help increase your milk supply.  Read the testimonials and see what you think.  All of the ingredients are similar to ones midwives and lactation consultants frequently recommend to support lactation.

Videos

For inspiration, watch a newborn baby attach himself to his mother's breast within minutes of birth.  Go to:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9WtH4dq-cw&feature=related 
The baby is using its natural survival instincts to do what it most needs and wants to do after it's born - get to the breast and get something to eat.  You will be amazed at how purposefully this baby moves.  And even if this doesn't happen immediately after birth, or even for weeks after, this instinct remains, and you can try it with your own baby.  Start with lots of skin-to-skin!

If you want to go directly to the videos on the site, you will find a list of all of the videos on the site, with a brief description of what they are about, at:  www.breastfeedinginc.ca/content.php?pagename=videos 

For some great videos on how to breastfeed, go to:

If you only want to watch one video, consider making it this one!
www.breastfeedinginc.ca/content.php?pagename=vid-2dayold
This video shows a 2 day old baby breast feeding well, with a good latch.   BUT this baby was not feeding well for the first 36 hours and so became dehydrated and jaundiced.  This may be the best video for good basic breast feeding technique that will help to make sure that you and your baby get off to a good start and that you prevent your baby from becoming dehydrated and jaundiced. 

Before you go out and buy a breast pump, take a look at this video!
New research shows that hand expression is better for mum and baby than pumping.  And that most women will get more milk by hand expressing than by using a pump.  For a good video on how to do it, go to: http://newborns.stanford.edu/Breastfeeding/HandExpression.html


Suggestions for other good videos or resources about breast feeding are welcome!



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