Hello again! I’m here with the second installment of the guest blogger series! Today we are featuring featuring Northern Virginia breastfeeding expert Tiffany Shank, a labor and postpartum doula sharing some of her tips for successful breastfeeding. This particular post is near and dear to my heart and I can’t wait for new breastfeeding moms to read this. As a passionate breastfeeding advocate, I think it’s important to recognize that breastfeeding may not always come easy because that opens up the lines of communication from which we can all find the support we need to have a successful breastfeeding journey.
When Breastfeeding Isn’t Easy
As new moms, planning to breastfeed, we enter motherhood with expectations, visions and plans. What happens when those plans do not work our and how do we deal with the feelings of defeat, inadequacy or guilt? We plan it all perfectly, amazing Midwives who support your birth at INOVA Loudoun Hospital, a Doula team, a birth plan, your newborn photographer is picked out and it all seems to be ready. When they hand you your fresh new baby and it is time to initiate breastfeeding, what next?
All about the first latch
Try not to focus so much on getting that first latch done as soon as possible. Some babies come out rooting and ready to breastfeed and some come out a little sleepy and they just want to snuggle. Each parenting journey is unique and it is important to allow yourself some flexibility and adjustment. This makes the transition smooth and helps the process along. If your baby plans to latch right away, switch sides after some time, but they do not need to spend hours at the breast to be satisfied, so do not be too worried about timing. If your baby does not latch right away in the delivery room, rest assured, they will be hungry later when all the excitement has calmed down. Pillows are an essential part of initial breastfeeding. Make yourself comfortable and let baby latch on.
Breastfeeding is natural, but it isn’t always easy
Sometimes breastfeeding is a little more challenging and you might find breastfeeding with a nipple shield is needed in the first few days to help you achieve your goals of breastfeeding your newborn. You might find that extra support is needed from the amazing IBCLC team at Premier Lactation Services can help you problem solve and continue to achieve your breastfeeding goals. At the end of the day, give yourself and your baby time to get to know one another and grace to navigate challenges that may arise during breastfeeding.
About the Author:
Tiffany Shank has been a knowledgeable resource and expert in all things pregnancy, baby and parenting for almost a decade. Her ability to connect people to resources and information to put them at ease is seen by her work as a Labor and Postpartum Doula with Virginia is for Doulas. For more pregnancy and parenting tips visit her website or follow them on Facebook.