August is National Breastfeeding Month and we want to take this opportunity to answer some common breastfeeding questions. Below you will find some of the most common questions about breastfeeding our doctors receive and the answers.
Answers to Common Breastfeeding Questions
Why Should I Breastfeed?
There are so many reasons why you should consider breastfeeding, here are just a few to consider:
Easy to digest for your baby
Complete nutrition - the perfect mix of protein, fat, vitamins, etc.
It contains components that promote overall health that you cannot get from formula
Breastfed baby’s are less likely to develop certain illnesses and have higher IQs
The benefits are truly endless and breast milk is exactly what your baby needs when it comes to nutrition and optimal growth.
How do I Breastfeed?
Breastfeeding can be done with a bottle by pumping or by feeding directly from the breast. As a new mom, don’t feel embarrassed if you are not sure what to do, we are here to help. To help Baby latch on, start by positioning your baby in a comfortable position for both of you with the baby facing you. Gently cup your breast and graze your nipple against the baby’s bottom lip. Babies have a sucking reflex which they should instinctively begin sucking. While supporting your baby’s neck begin to center your nipple in their mouth above the tongue. If you are experiencing issues of getting the baby to latch on be sure to read our article, “Common Issues Experienced While Breastfeeding”. Remember, other moms who have breastfed may also be great resources.
How Long Should I Breastfeed?
It is recommended to exclusively breastfeed for the first 6 months. Once other foods and drinks are introduced it is still recommended to continue to breastfeed for the first year of the baby’s life.
Will I Produce Enough Milk?
Yes, your body will naturally produce the amount of milk that your baby needs. However, there are instances where a mother’s body is not producing an adequate milk supply which we explain more in our article on common issues of breastfeeding.
What Effects Will it Have on My Body?
Breastfeeding can have numerous effects on the mother, here are just a few:
Quicker recovery from childbirth
Release of prolactin which creates a feeling of calm and relaxation
Bonding time with your baby
Reduced risk of breast and ovarian cancer
Helps you lose weight gained during pregnancy
Have More Questions About Breastfeeding?
Your primary doctor is an amazing resource, come prepared for your next visit with questions. Additionally, don’t forget about your loved ones that have breastfed and can give advice.