It would seem that breastfeeding is a process so natural that there seems to be no difficulty in building it. But life shows that this is far from the case. How not to be confused when faced with the first difficulties?
1. Incorrect attachment to the chest
The main rule: when the baby sucks, it should capture not only the nipple with its mouth, but also part of the areola. This is important for mom: thanks to the large “coverage area”, a lot of nerve impulses come into the woman’s brain from the surface of the skin, and milk production increases, and cracks do not appear on the nipples. It is no less important for the child: with such a seizure, it is easier for him to suck out milk.
Sit back: with a numb neck, lower back and arms, the process is unlikely to be pleasant. Yes, and the baby in an uncomfortable position will behave uneasily. Take a pose in which you could watch an interesting film for a long time – sit down, reclining or lying down. If possible, undress the baby, covering it with a blanket for heat, exposing your stomach and chest as well – skin-to-skin contact is very important for lactation, as it causes a sharp surge in hormones. Lay the child evenly so that his body and head are in the same plane, the tummy is pressed against your stomach, and the head does not tilt back.
To make it easier for the baby to hold the breast in her mouth, the mother should support the baby. Hold your chest with your palm from below, creating a kind of cup, and with your thumb from above, but not too close to the nipple. Slide the baby to the chest so that his nose (not his mouth!) Is looking at the nipple. Under the child’s head, hold your hand and wait until it opens its mouth wide. If the baby is napping or thinking, slide a finger or a nipple over his lips. As soon as the baby opens its mouth wide, push its head to your chest, but do not succumb to it yourself. In this position, the nipple, as if sliding off the upper lip and palate, will be deep in the baby’s mouth. If the nipple is located at the level of the baby’s mouth, it will only capture the nipple area.
The best position for feeding is one in which the mother does not feel discomfort in any part of the body, and nothing prevents the baby from sucking quietly.
If you did everything right, the baby will put out its tongue, capture the nipple and about 2/3 of the areola. In this position, the areola and nipple fill almost the entire oral cavity of the baby, and the movements of the tongue crumbs massage the chest. While the baby is sucking, his lower lip will be turned out, his cheeks will be rounded, his chin will be pressed to his breast, and you will hear him swallowing milk.
After some time, when the mother and baby adapt and get used to each other, the woman will choose the most comfortable position for herself and for the child. There are four such positions.
Relaxed feeding. A position that does not require any effort from a woman is called biological, or relaxed, feeding. You just need to put the baby face down on the chest of a reclining mother. The child will orient himself, find the nipple and grab it in the most convenient way for himself and exactly as it should be done.
Cradle. With the upper part of the body, the baby lies on her mother’s hand, under the breast from which he will be fed. His head rests on the elbow, and the back rests evenly on his mother’s forearm. The child should cling to his chest with his whole face and shoulders, and to his stomach with his belly, and not sideways.
From under the arm. The baby lies on a large pillow on the side of her mother, legs to the back of a sofa or chair. His head peeps out from under her arm. At the same time, the baby lies on its side, on the pillow, and the mother supports it with his hand just below the back of the head. This position allows the baby to suck out milk more easily.
Lying down. The kid is next to mom. Mom lies with her shoulder on the mattress, between the shoulder and the ear is the edge of the pillow. Hugging the baby, the woman presses his tummy to her, and arranges her head on the bend of the elbow. With her free hand, she helps the baby take her breasts properly.
2. Mom thinks the baby is not enough milk
Often, inexperienced parents can not understand whether the baby eats up and just in case they start to feed him an artificial mixture. But as soon as an artificial mixture appears in the diet of the crumbs, breastfeeding in most cases comes to naught, because it is much easier to suck from the bottle and the baby refuses to take the breast.
To prevent this from happening, observe the behavior of the child. A satiated baby stops sucking and calmly falls asleep in his mother’s arms, even if his meal was quite short. When the baby has enough milk, he not only sleeps well, but also gains weight at least 100-125 g per week, without delay makes both the “small” and the “large” toilet (the first – at least 6 times a day, the second – 1 to 8 times).
Signs of “malnutrition”: the child is worried and cries even after feeding, now and then he searches for the mother’s nipple, and after sucking all the milk, he continues to eagerly grab the already empty chest. He sleeps poorly, often screaming piercingly, he has sparse loose stools.
Weighing will help you figure out if the baby has enough milk. During the week, at the same time, weigh the baby before and after feeding. Compare the difference between the two numbers with the serving size set by your local pediatrician. Doctors calculate portions based on the weight and health of the child. For example, a healthy baby at the age of 1 month weighing 4 kg per knock eats an average of 700 g of milk. If mom feeds him every 3-4 hours, a single serving will be approximately 100 g.
The most comfortable way to express milk is to use a breast pump. Modern devices imitate the movements of the baby’s lips, and the pumping process is completely painless.
3. With mastitis, the mother completely abandons breastfeeding and rarely decantes
Mastitis – inflammation of the breast tissue. At the same time, one or several small red spots are formed on the chest, hot and painful to the touch, bursting pain appears inside, the body temperature rises. If compaction is not felt deep in the gland, breastfeeding can be continued by applying the baby to a healthy breast. In this case, milk from the diseased breast needs to be expressed, but the baby should not be given it, since it can be infected with bacteria. At this stage of mastitis, which is called serous, cool dry compresses help (they are done in between meals. Mom is prescribed anti-inflammatory drugs and antibiotics that are compatible with breastfeeding.
If a painful compaction is felt, then mastitis has passed into a purulent stage. In this case, natural feeding is temporarily stopped, because bacteria can get from a sick breast to a healthy one at any time. The baby is transferred to artificial mixtures until the mother recovers completely. Treatment of mastitis at this stage also comes down to antibiotic therapy, although surgical intervention may sometimes be required. In order to further maintain lactation, it is necessary to continue to express in the rhythm of feeding, that is, every 2-3 hours. One can talk about full recovery only when the results of bacterial milk culture are satisfactory.
4. Refusal from breastfeeding in the event of a child’s digestive disorders and increased gas formation
With these symptoms, many doctors immediately give mom a direction for bacterial culture of breast milk to check the level of staphylococci. The norm is the presence in the sample of no more than 250 colonies of these microorganisms. However, even if the analysis confirmed the presence of only a few dozen, most doctors diagnose the baby with a “functional gastrointestinal upset” or “dysbiosis” and prescribe antibiotics or bacteriophages to him and his mother, and in some cases they recommend stopping breastfeeding until complete “recovery”.
Such measures are often meaningless, because epidermal and Staphylococcus aureus are typical representatives of skin microflora, and a certain amount of them in milk is a variant of the norm according to all international standards. It is for this reason that foreign doctors do not conduct a microbiological examination of breast milk at all. Although one case where this study is justified does exist: an analysis of the sterility of breast milk is necessary if the baby has symptoms of enterocolitis (frequent stool with an admixture of blood and mucus, severe abdominal pain).
If the breast is inflamed and hurts (usually this problem occurs due to stagnation of milk in the milk ducts – lactostasis), but the mother does not have a fever, with the permission of the doctor, you can continue breastfeeding, decanting a little milk in advance, so that it is easier for the baby to suck.
If the child has mild digestive upsets (constipation, diarrhea or regurgitation), the mother first needs to review her diet. It is necessary to analyze what products the child develops these symptoms. The reaction is very individual, but there is only one conclusion: these dishes should be excluded from the diet.
Products containing yeast (fresh baked goods), whole cow’s milk, carbonated drinks, kvass, hot and processed cheeses, nuts, chocolate, mushrooms, smoked meat and sausages, lard, any canned goods, coffee, grapes, and marinades are also blacklisted. and spices, mayonnaise, ketchups, peas, beans, radishes, radishes, onions, garlic, cucumbers, sauerkraut and fresh white cabbage, melons, watermelons, exotic tropical fruits. All these products can provoke increased flatulence in the baby’s tummy.
5. Mom puts the baby to the other breast, not waiting for him to completely suck the milk from the first breast
It must be remembered that the composition of milk is heterogeneous. First, the baby sucks the so-called “front” milk. It is liquid and consists of water for 90%, so first of all it does not satisfy hunger, but thirst. Only after sucking the “front” milk, the baby begins to receive the “back” milk, rich in fats – then the feeling of fullness gradually comes. But the second portion arrives more slowly, and the child has to make more efforts, therefore whims arise quite often.
Inexperienced mothers immediately apply the crumbs to the other breast. Having sucked again the “front” milk, the baby falls asleep, never reaching the “back”. After a while, he wakes up, asks for food, but again receives only the “front” portion. In fact, you need to do something else: just hold the crumbs near your chest for a little longer. Then he will suck both the front and back portion. If one breast is not enough for him, you can give a second. When the baby asks again to eat, it must be applied to the chest from which he finished sucking the last time.
6. Refusal from breastfeeding with a cold mom
Interruption of breastfeeding is necessary only in rare and quite serious cases (such as typhoid fever, dysentery, breast abscess, etc.), and seasonal ailments such as a runny nose, sore throat or “intestinal flu” do not apply to them. Do not worry that you can infect a baby: breast milk contains a large number of antibodies that protect it from infections.
Another thing is the situation when a young mother needs medicine. Here you can not do without the help of a doctor (your attending physician or pediatrician who is watching the baby), who will select drugs compatible with lactation, or decide that you still need to interrupt it for a while. Today, there are enough funds compatible with breastfeeding – even antibiotics are among them, so babies need to be deprived of important nutrition only in special cases.
7. Using pacifiers or pacifier bottles
These breast simulators are extremely harmful devices, as they reduce the stimulation and emptying of the breast; instead of sucking, the baby sucks the nipple. In addition, such devices spoil the correct capture of the breast, since when they are sucking, the muscles that are completely different when sucking on the mother’s breasts work. As a result, the outflow of milk worsens, it stagnates, and lactostases form. At the same time, the baby “slides” onto the nipple and injures him, causing cracks. In addition, there is no milk in the nipple, since the main accumulation of milk occurs in the areola zone, where the ducts expand and merge.
With deep cracks or inflammation, you can not apply the baby to a sick breast for 1-3 days and express it, feeding the baby with this milk. More often, give the breast where the seals formed, changing the position of the child (sitting, lying, from under the arm) so that milk flows from all segments of the gland.
8. Feeding in the same position
Such uniformity does not allow uniformly emptying all lobes of the mammary gland. When feeding the baby in one position (usually this is the classic “cradle” pose or lying on its side), the baby empties the lower and periosternal lobes, where his chin is looking. And the upper and axillary lobes usually remain filled with milk. In these places, with constant feeding in the same position, stagnation most often occurs. Therefore, it is necessary to change postures and breasts during the day.
9. Rare feedings
In the first month, babies sleep a lot, sometimes fall asleep, without even having time to fully get enough, so it is important to organize frequent attachments and sleep near the chest. If you feel that the chest is pouring heavily, then you need to make the attachments more frequent, slightly stirring the baby (scratch the heel, stroke the cheek) and offer him the chest. The amount of milk that arrived during the day but was not spent by the baby, according to the feedback principle, is “subtracted” the next day, and the breast begins to produce less milk.
But the opposite process may occur: due to long breaks, the breast will start to produce a lot of milk, it will stagnate in the ducts, squeeze the walls of the milky ducts and cause stagnation. In addition, if mom practices fluid restriction as a “treatment” of hot flashes, milk will thicken and milk corks will form from droplets of fat. They clog the ducts and worsen the outflow of milk. The most effective way to prevent such phenomena is the regime of free feeding – at the request of the baby and the requirement of mothers.
10. Additional breast expressions for nursing on demand
Best of all, the volume of milk in the chest is regulated by the baby himself, sucking the amount of milk he needs. With the free mode, at the request of the baby, there is no need to additionally express breastfeeding. When expressing the breast “dry”, signals are sent to the brain about the increased production of milk, it surges so much that the child physically does not have time to eat all of it. Milk stagnates in the chest, squeezing the milk ducts, and causes swelling and soreness of the tissues – breast engorgement is formed.
It’s difficult for a baby to suckle such breasts: the milky ducts are squeezed, the milk does not separate well, and the mother experiences pain and stress. In rare cases, when feeding is temporarily impossible (you are on the street, the baby is sleeping and does not want to take breasts), you can slightly breast the breast – but only to relief.