As a new or expecting mother, you may have many questions and uncertainties about the breastfeeding journey you are about to embark on.
Breastfeeding is a beautiful and natural process that provides your little one with the best nourishment possible. However, it's understandable to have doubts and concerns about it, and we want to help ease your mind and provide you with valuable information to support you through this experience.
Remember, there are no silly or unimportant questions when it comes to the wellbeing of you and your baby. Seek guidance from your healthcare provider or a lactation consultant if you're feeling unsure or have any concerns.
In this blog, we aim to address some of the common questions that new and expecting mothers have about breastfeeding. Our hope is to provide you with the knowledge and support you need to feel confident and empowered in your breastfeeding journey.
1. Is breastfeeding hard?
Breastfeeding is not hard but it can be challenging for new mothers. In the first few days, you might face difficulty getting the correct latch. You could also face discomfort due to milk let-down or sore nipples from an incorrect latch.
However, rest assured that with a little patience and perseverance, you will get comfortable with breastfeeding and will be able to enjoy this beautiful time bonding with your little one.
2. Will breastfeeding hurt?
Breastfeeding does not usually hurt.
However, an incorrect latch can be uncomfortable and painful in the beginning. As you and your baby get used to the correct way of latching and comfortable positions, breastfeeding will feel comfortable, too.
In some cases, an infection or a blocked milk duct can cause discomfort while breastfeeding. So, if you experience pain even after correctly latching and changing breastfeeding positions, it is advisable to see a lactation consultant or your doctor.
3. Are my breasts too small to breastfeed?
Breastfeeding is possible due to the milk-producing glands and ducts in the breast. These are present in breasts of all shapes and sizes making it possible for mummies with smaller breasts to produce as much milk as mummies with larger breasts.
So, no matter what the size of your breasts is. Go ahead and breastfeed your little one and know that you are doing the best for her nutrition.
4. Do I need to drink more milk if I choose to breastfeed?
No. The production of breastmilk does not depend on your milk intake. It is important to have a balanced diet and include lots of fluids to stay hydrated.
If milk is a part of your diet, by all means, continue it. But breastfeeding should not be a reason to drastically increase your milk intake.
5. How often should I breastfeed my baby?
Newborns typically feed every 2-3 hours, or 8-12 times in a 24-hour period. As your baby grows, she may go longer between feedings.
One of the ways to go about breastfeeding is to look for hunger cues in your baby. Babies sometimes would want to feed more when they go through growth spurts.
6. How do I know if my baby is getting enough milk?
You can tell if your baby is getting enough milk by monitoring their weight gain, the number of wet and dirty diapers, and their general health and behaviour. Your pediatrician can also help you track your baby's growth and development.
7. Can I breastfeed if I have flat or inverted nipples?
Yes, most women with flat or inverted nipples can still breastfeed. In some cases, a lactation consultant may recommend the use of a nipple shield or other techniques to help with latching.
8. Can I breastfeed if I have a cold or flu?
Yes, you can breastfeed if you have a cold or flu. In fact, it's recommended because your breast milk contains antibodies that can help protect your baby from getting sick.
However, it's important to take precautions to avoid spreading germs to your baby, such as washing your hands frequently and wearing a mask if necessary.
9. How long should I breastfeed my baby?
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of a baby's life and continued breastfeeding along with the introduction of solid foods for at least the first year.
10. Can I breastfeed in public?
Yes, you can breastfeed in public in most places. In most public places such as airports and shopping malls, you will find nursing rooms. Here, you can find a quiet place to breastfeed. If you are planning to go out, check out our list of top nursing rooms in Singapore here.
Nursing room in City Square Mall, Singapore.
If a nursing room is not accessible and you are uncomfortable nursing in public, a nursing cover is a good option. It instantly creates a private bubble for you and your baby, and you can breastfeed practically anywhere.
11. Can I breastfeed if I have implants or have had breast surgery?
In most cases, women with breast implants or who have had breast surgery can still breastfeed. However, it's important to let your healthcare provider and lactation consultant know about any previous breast surgeries or implants so they can help you with breastfeeding techniques.
12. Can I breastfeed if I am taking medication?
In many cases, women can breastfeed while taking medication. However, it's important to check with your healthcare provider and/or a lactation consultant to determine if the medication is safe to take while breastfeeding.
13. How can I continue breastfeeding when I go back to work?
If your work schedule allows you to be close to your baby at feeding times, that is great. However, it might not always be possible because of which many mummies choose to pump and store breastmilk in advance.
Breast pumping is a great way to continue breastfeeding while managing your work priorities. Getting a pumping bra and a good quality electric breast pump can help you pump on the go and ensure that your baby is getting breastmilk even when you are not available.
14. Are there any foods that I should avoid during breastfeeding?
It is advised that you eat a variety of foods and adopt a balanced diet during breastfeeding. It also helps your baby to get used to different tastes.
However, there might be a few foods that are best avoided during breastfeeding. To know more, read our blog here.
We hope that these FAQs have provided you with the knowledge, support, and confidence you need to successfully navigate your breastfeeding journey.
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