Preparation for breastfeeding involves more of reading everything about it, learning the needed skill and intricacies than doing anything physical. You may be bombarded with advice by many people about what you should and shouldn’t do with your breasts. Ignore that, because the truth is that you don’t need to do anything specific at all with your breasts and body. Your body will do most of the work in preparation for breastfeeding. The activity of your pregnancy hormones results in enlargement of your nipples, increasing your mild ducts, and making them mature.
Preparing For Breastfeeding Includes
Adopting A Positive Attitude
- Create and adopt a positive attitude towards breastfeeding. This increases your self-confidence that you can breastfeed just like millions of other mothers. Only a very small minority of women are unable to breastfeed due to various reasons. Visualize yourself breastfeeding your baby. This increases your self-belief that you can do it easily.
- Although breastfeeding is natural, it can take some skill and practice to get used to it. So give yourself some time to get familiar with it. Most women have some initial problems, but they end up with successful breastfeeding with a bit of support and guidance.
- Discuss with your partner about how important it is for you to breastfeed your baby. Their emotional and practical support will significantly contribute to your success.
- Discuss with your mother, mother-in-law, and other family members about your plan to breastfeed. Their physical and emotional support will make a big difference.
- Make a list of contact lactation consultant, NGOs, and other agencies that can help you with breastfeeding.
Reading To Get More Information
- Read everything you can about breastfeeding. The more you know, the more confident you will be.
- Interact with breastfeeding mothers and ask them what it is like. Most women are more than happy to share their experiences of what breastfeeding means for them.
- Watch breastfeeding mothers and observe how they latch or attach their baby.
- Discuss with your mother, mother-in-law, aunts, sisters, cousins, and neighbors and learn from them.
- Attend a breastfeeding class. It is the best way to learn and prepare for breastfeeding.
- Join a support group and listen to their stories. This will help you to become more familiar with breastfeeding.
- Inform your hospital or birthing center about your plans well before your due date and request them not to feed your baby any formula, supplements, or anything unless medically necessary.
Equipping Yourself For Breastfeeding
- Buy a good breast pump. This is needed to store breast milk or to increase milk supply.
- Buy a comfortable nursing bra with detachable feeding pads.
- Buy a good breastfeeding pillow for support and comfort.
- Buy breast shells if you have inverted or flat nipples. These can be used from five months pregnancy to draw out your nipples in preparation for breastfeeding. These will also protect sore or cracked nipples from friction before and after breastfeeding.
- Buy a comfortable chair and plenty of pillows for support. Place them in a quiet room, where you can nurse your baby.
- Buy a sling to help keep you on the move while you breastfeed on demand. This also promotes skin to skin contact, bonding, and an increased breast milk production.