How To Nurse A Newborn Baby

How Often Should Baby Be Nursing

How to Breastfeed a Newborn | Breastfeeding

Frequent nursing encourages good milk supply and reduces engorgement. Aim for nursing at least 10 12 times per day . You CANT nurse too oftenyou CAN nurse too little.

Nurse at the first signs of hunger dont wait until baby is crying. Allow baby unlimited time at the breast when sucking actively, then offer the second breast. Some newborns are excessively sleepy at firstwake baby to nurse if 2 hours or 4 hours have passed without nursing.

Breastfeeding: Hints To Help You Get Off To A Good Start

Breastfeeding has many benefits for your baby. Breast milk is rich in nutrients. It has antibodies, which help protect your baby against infections. It also can help prevent sudden infant death syndrome . Babies who are breastfed are less likely to have allergies, asthma, and diabetes. They also are less likely to become overweight.

Breastfeeding has benefits for you as well. Its cheaper than using formula. You dont have to wash bottles or mix formula. It helps your uterus go back to normal size after stretching out during pregnancy. This can help you lose weight faster. It can delay the return of your periods. However, you shouldnt count on it to prevent pregnancy. Breastfeeding helps make time for you to be close to your baby. Women who breastfeed have lower risks of type 2 diabetes, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, high blood pressure, and heart disease.

How Can I Increase My Milk Supply

If you think your baby needs more milk, increase the number of feedings a day. Its important for you to get plenty of rest and eat right. Give your body time to catch up to your babys demands.

Dont replace breast milk with baby formula or cereal. This can make babies lose interest in breast milk. It also will decrease your milk supply. You shouldnt give your baby solid foods until about 6 months of age.

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All About Breast Milk

Baby’s first meal from Mom isn’t milk, it’s colostrum, a yellowish liquid rich in antibodies that boosts his immune system. Your real milk will come in a few days after you give birth. Don’t worry you’ll know when it’s there! Your breasts may feel like they’re full of rocks, or that they’re about to burst . The good news is that your hungry baby can really help you out the best way to relieve engorgement is to nurse often. Drink a large glass of water every time you nurse, eat well, and take your prenatal vitamins.

A major concern for new moms is whether baby is getting enough to eat after all, you can’t count the ounces. If you hear and see your baby swallowing, he’s drinking. And if he’s filling plenty of diapers with urine and soft, yellow stools, at least eight a day, he’s getting nourishment. However, you should call your pediatrician if your baby exhibits these signs:

  • Your baby stops feeding after 10 minutes or less.
  • Your baby is frequently fussy and lethargic.
  • Your baby’s skin is yellowing.
  • Your baby’s stools are hard and dark.

What To Look And Listen For While Baby Is Nursing


While the baby is nursing you want to look for a few things to ensure all is well. The baby should have their lips flared around the breast. If you pull the lower lip down a bit the tongue should be curled around the breast. You can also usually hear baby swallowing and watch their ears wiggling when actively nursing.

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Nursing For Beginners What You Need To Know

Nursing your newborn can be an emotional roller coaster in the beginning, but with a little time and patience, you will get the hang of it. Patience and a bit of preparation will help you be in the right mindset to nurse your baby successfully. Few things are as beneficial to your newborn as breastfeeding and frequent skin-to-skin contact, which are both great tricks for soothing an overtired infant as they prevent over stimulation, help calm your baby down and encourage brain development.

Enjoy the time that you spend with your baby. Smiling, cuddling, and talking to your baby can give them a sense of security and make you happy too! Bachman, Margo. Yoga Mama, Yoga Baby: Ayurveda and Yoga for a Healthy Pregnancy and Birth. Sounds True, 2013.

All babies are born with a sucking reflex. Babies will suck vigorously anytime something is placed in their mouths. But it is moms job to make sure that the mouth is positioned correctly when the sucking begins to cut down on painful latching and potential damage.

This goes without saying but stay as far a way as possible from the highly damaging practices CIO or controlled crying. They not only traumatize your newborn and cause irreparable emotional and cognitive impairment but can also affect nursing.

How Often Should I Breastfeed

Newborn babies should breastfeed 812 times per day for about the first month. Breast milk is easily digested, so newborns are hungry often. Frequent feedings helps stimulate your milk production during the first few weeks.

In the first few weeks of life, breastfeeding should be “on demand” , which is about every 1-1/2 to 3 hours. As newborns get older, they’ll nurse less often, and may have a more predictable schedule. Some might feed every 90 minutes, whereas others might go 23 hours between feedings.

Newborns should not go more than about 4 hours without feeding, even overnight.

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Before You Give Birth

During pregnancy, the following things can prepare you for breastfeeding.

  • Prenatal care. Its important to take good care of yourself and your baby. Babies who are born early have a harder time breastfeeding.
  • Talk to your doctor. Make sure your doctor knows you plan to breastfeed. They can give you some resources. Ask questions about what type of care the hospital provides after birth. Some offer lactation consultants, who are breastfeeding specialists.
  • Breastfeeding class. Some women find that taking a class can help them practice for the real thing.
  • Breastfeeding items. Plan ahead by purchasing the items you need. These can include a nursing pillow, nursing bra, and covers. Some hospitals and insurance plans provide free breast pumps.

Should You Bath Baby In A Sink Or Full Bath

How to Nurse Your Baby | Breastfeeding

There are sink inserts available to bathe a newborn. This can be a good option if youre traveling or short on space in your home. Follow the bathtub steps above for giving your baby a bath in the sink, but take care that the water coming from the sink faucet isnt too hot.

When your baby is able to sit up on their own , you can use the full bathtub. Fill the tub with only a few inches of water and supervise them at all times, making sure their head and neck stay well above water.

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Bathe Your Baby Safely But Not Too Frequently

Spot clean your baby every day around his mouth, neck and groin basically, anywhere that gets dirty. As for proper bathing, one to two times a week is actually plenty, Shu said, and bathing too frequently can lead to dry skin or eczema, a skin condition characterized by red, itchy skin and rashes.

To wash a baby before her umbilical cord stump falls off which usually happens 5 to 15 days after birth youll want to give sponge baths. To do that, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends wrapping your baby in a towel and laying her down on a soft flat surface. First wipe her face with a clean, moist washcloth you dont want to use soap because it could get into her eyes or mouth then apply a small amount of baby soap onto the washcloth and gently wipe the rest of her body. Then wipe your babys body again with a clean damp washcloth. After the bath, consider applying a baby moisturizer, such as petroleum jelly, Mattke said, to prevent dry skin.

Why Breastfeed While Lying Down

After having a baby, breastfeeding lying down can be helpful for many reasons, including:

Recovery. If a mother is recovering from a C-Section, an episiotomy, or vaginal birth, sitting up for an extended period may be uncomfortable or painful. Nursing while lying down may help to avoid pain while recovering from birth.

Comfort. Supporting the weight of a nursing baby can be hard on a mother’s shoulders, arms, and back. For some women, nursing in a reclining or lying-down position eases the strain on her upper body.

Sleep. Falling asleep while breastfeeding can be very dangerous for an infant. However, many mothers who co-sleep find that night feeds are easier while laying down.

Clogged ducts. It is not uncommon for a breastfeeding woman to experience a clogged milk duct in her breast. Nursing in different positions can help a clog pass, including nursing lying down.

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Wait With Introducing A Pacifier

Giving your baby a pacifier can help soothe her between feeds however, offering it in those first few weeks can have a negative effect on your milk supply, and discourage your baby from wanting to nurse.

Experts recommend waiting until your baby has gotten used to breastfeeding before offering a pacifier.

Of course, you may use a pacifier sparingly to comfort your baby earlier than that, like when sheâs getting a vaccination, but you could also offer her your clean pinky finger to suckle on for comfort during these short periods.

When Your Baby Is Awake Bond With Her Calm Her And Do Tummy Time

A Maternity Nurse or A Nanny?

One of the best ways to bond with your baby when shes awake is through skin-to-skin contact resting your bare-chested baby on your bare chest, for example. Studies have shown that babies who experience skin-to-skin contact immediately after birth are more likely to be breastfed, are breastfed for longer and have healthier responses on heart and breathing tests. Shu also suggested talking to your baby regularly and, since babies are nearsighted, getting your face up close to her so she can see you better.

When your baby gets fussy, consider using some or all of the five Ss swaddle, side or stomach position , shush, swing and suck which were first suggested by pediatrician Harvey Karp, M.D., author of The Happiest Baby on the Block. If you want to introduce a pacifier to give your baby something to suck on, its best to wait until after he has learned how to nurse or drink well from a bottle, Shu said.

Dont forget about tummy time, which is really important for gross motor development, head control and neck strength, Mattke said. To do tummy time, place your awake baby on her stomach on a stable soft surface two to three times a day for three to five minutes. Engage with your baby on the floor to keep her entertained. You can also do tummy time on your chest if your baby prefers that, Mattke added.

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Between Days 6 And 10 Start Settling Into A More Predictable Breastfeeding Routine

Because your baby is likely receiving more milk than she did before, you may notice a more regular pattern of nursing, sleeping and alert periods after your milk comes in. If your baby likes to suckle for comfort, you may find that she prefers to cluster feed at certain times of day, meaning shell nurse almost continuously for a few hours, rather than nursing only once every two to three hours.

By this time, your baby should be producing four or more yellowish bowel movements and six or more wet diapers every 24 hours. Consult the A.A.P.s breastfeeding guide to help ensure you and your baby are still on the right breastfeeding path. Its also important to continue to find time to rest when your baby is sleeping.

Limitations Of Formula Feeding

Just as breastfeeding has its unique demands, so does bottle feeding. Bottle feeding requires organization and preparation, especially if you want to take your baby out. Store-bought formula can be pretty expensive, but do not try to make your own formula at home.

It’s important to make sure that you have enough formula on hand, and bottles that are clean and ready to be used.

Here are a few guidelines for formula feeding:

  • Carefully follow directions on the label when preparing formula. Do not add more water than directed.
  • Bottles left out of the refrigerator longer than 1 hour and any formula left in the bottle that a baby doesn’t finish should be discarded.
  • Prepared bottles of formula can be stored in the refrigerator up to 24 hours and carefully warmed just before feeding. You don’t have to warm formula, but most babies prefer it.
  • A bottle of formula can be warmed by holding it in running warm water or setting it in a pan of warm water. A bottle of formula should never be warmed in a microwave. The bottle can heat unevenly and leave “hot spots” that can burn a baby’s mouth.

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Between Days 11 And 14 Prepare For A Growth Spurt

Near the end of her two weeks, your baby will likely have a growth spurt and will want to nurse more often than normal, acting ravenously hungry. This can last for a few days until your baby meets his increased milk needs, and your milk supply will likely adjust to meet these increased demands.

Your breasts may not feel as full as they did during the first two weeks. This does not mean that you dont have enough milk. If your baby seems satisfied after feedings and is gaining weight, he is getting enough. Weekly weight checks with your babys pediatrician can help you stay on track in the first month, until breastfeeding is fully established. Babies who are breastfeeding well will gain 5 to 7 ounces weekly.

Nursing your baby is a special experience. Though there may be challenges along the way, breastfeeding often becomes much easier, more enjoyable and more rewarding over time.

Latching Baby Onto Your Breast

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In the beginning, it might take quite a few tries to get your baby into the right position but keep trying.

First, its essential to know a good latch, since improper latching is the most common cause of breast discomfort. Baby’s mouth should cover both your nipple and the areola, so that babys mouth, tongue and lips massage milk out of your milk glands. Sucking on just the nipple will not only leave your infant hungry because the glands that secrete the milk wont be compressed, it will also make your nipples sore and cracked. Heres how to get that latch going:

Is baby having trouble properly latching on? Break the suction carefully by gently inserting a clean finger into the corner of her mouth or by pressing on your breast near the mouth. Then begin the lip tickling anew and let her latch on again properly, with the nipple and the areola in the mouth.

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