In a previous article, we explored ten recurrent breastfeeding questions and got more questions from moms. Read on to see the questions and our take on them.
1. When will my milk come in?
Typically three to five days after giving birth. In the meantime, your body produces colostrum, which is thick, yellowish, and packed with carbohydrates, protein and antibodies perfect for your baby’s first meals.
2. How do I know if my baby is getting enough to eat?
If your baby seems satisfied after feedings, eats on a regular schedule, and is gaining an appropriate amount of weight, you can rest assured she is getting enough. If this isn’t the case, speak with your paediatrician.
3. How should I treat sore nipples?
First, try different feeding positions that alleviate the pressure on the sore spot. Also, rub a little breast milk on your nipples after each feeding—it actually helps heal them. You may also want to try a breastfeeding nipple cream.
4. Can I breastfeed twins?
Definitely. Although breastfeeding two babies is more challenging than one, and many moms of twins supplement with formula, it is possible to nurse twins—even at the same time.
This is called tandem feeding (and yes, Angelina Jolie did it).
5. How long do I need to breastfeed to get the benefits?
Breastfeeding is recommended for at least a year, but studies show the longer you nurse your baby, the better—whether that’s two months or two years.
6. Can I breastfeed after returning to work?
Of course! Invest in a quality breast pump and follow the instructions for proper storage of breast milk (we did a thread on this last week).
7. Can I drink alcohol or coffee while breastfeeding?
Anything you consume is passed on to your baby, so both of these should be limited. It’s safest to stick to the decaf and mocktails you enjoyed while pregnant.
8. Can I get pregnant while breastfeeding?
Yes. Although nursing may delay the return of your cycle, it is possible for some new mommies to get pregnant while breastfeeding. So if you aren’t ready for another baby, talk to your healthcare provider about birth control options.
9. Can I supplement with formula?
Yes. You need to find what works for you and your baby, and supplementing is necessary for some moms. But keep in mind that any formula your baby eats will decrease your milk supply, so it’s not always the best solution.
10. How do I increase milk production?
Nurse, nurse, nurse! The more your baby eats, the more milk you will produce. You can also pump in between or immediately after feeding your baby. Drinking plenty of water and maintaining a healthy diet can help, as well.
Think there are a few more recurrent breastfeeding questions you need clarity on? Don’t hesitate to ask. Also, if you need additional help with breastfeeding, you can consult a lactation consultant.