8

8
8
THOUGHTFUL
REMINDERS
GET LOTS OF REST
Be as good to yourself as you can. Try to nap
when baby naps. Accept help with housework
and meals from your partner, family and friends.
Do only what housekeeping must be done. Limit your visitors. Go
to bed early.
EAT WELL
The foods you choose are important when you are breastfeeding,
to ensure good health for you and your baby. Follow Canada’s
Food Guide to Healthy Eating for basic nutrition and drink extra
fluids to keep your milk supply adequate. The only foods you must
avoid are those to which you might be allergic.
Nursing mothers are discouraged from going on weight loss
diets as they may cause the milk supply to decrease. While nursing, you may gradually lose weight, and the extra weight gained
during pregnancy is used to provide part of the energy needed to
make breast milk.
HAVE PLENTY TO DRINK
You’ll find you are extra thirsty, so have a glass of juice, milk or
water every time the baby nurses.
Remember if you smoke or drink alcohol: tobacco, alcohol
and other drugs can pass into your breast milk and may harm
your baby.
BE COMFORTABLE
Relax in the bathtub. It’s good therapy. Walk. Gradually resume
some exercise. Plan an evening out regularly. Motherhood and
fatherhood are new roles that need to be talked over and learned
together. Keep the lines of communication open!
9
TALK TO
OTHERS
1O
P
ersonal contact with other nursing mothers is
important for confident breastfeeding. Don’t keep
concerns to yourself. Call a friend, La Leche League,
the public health nurse, a lactation consultant or your
doctor or midwife. It helps to talk to someone.
ENJOY
YOUR
BABY!
H
olding your baby close stimulates her senses of
touch, smell and taste. A baby who is smiled at,
talked to and cuddled develops a sense of security. Breastfeeding is more than simply providing nutrients and calories for physical growth – it contributes
to a special closeness. So have confidence in nature and in yourself and give your little one the very best start in life!
Our mission is to help the people of Canada
maintain and improve their health.
Health Canada
Health
Canada
Santé
Canada
Published by authority of the Minister of Health
For additional copies, please contact:
Publications
Health Canada
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0K9
Tel: (613) 954-5995
Fax: (613) 941-5366
Également disponible en français sous le titre
10 précieux conseils pour allaiter avec succès
This publication is also available on Internet at
the following address:
http:/www.hc-sc.gc.ca
It can be made available in/on computer
diskette/large print/audiocassette/braille
upon request.
© Minister of Public Works and
Government Services Canada, 1991
Cat. H39-204/1993E
ISBN 0-661-20998-2
Revised 1998
1VALUABLE
O
TIPS FOR
SUCCESSFUL
BREASTFEEDING
TODAY, THREE
TIMES MORE
WOMEN ARE
BREASTFEEDING
THEIR BABIES
THAN 20 YEARS
AGO.
1
AN
EARLY
START
IS THE
BEST
START
HOW OFTEN?
Breastfed babies prefer a span of two to three hours from the
beginning of one feeding to the beginning of the next. Mother’s
milk is digested more easily than formula. You don’t need to give
any kind of supplement – not even water. With frequent nursing,
your baby will get enough nourishment. The usual pattern is this:
nurse the baby on one side; then, after time out for a burp or diaper change, switch to the other side. At the next feeding, reverse
the order, offering her the last used side first. Some babies prefer
several “short courses,” others prefer one long feeding. Don’t rush
her – take your time.
B
reastfeed your baby as soon as possible after birth.
Babies are often more alert and interested in feeding in
the first hour following birth than later that day. Use the
help of experienced nursing staff. Relax – you’re both learning!
So feed often on request; perhaps every two to three hours
during the day and when baby wakes at night. Have your baby
room-in with you in the hospital.
❀ As soon as you are able to, sit to feed your baby, support
your back and put a pillow on your knees for everybody’s
comfort. Bring your baby to your breast rather than your
breast to your baby.
❀ Hold the baby close to your body, skin to skin, tummy to
tummy, face to breast, mouth to nipple.
❀ Support your breast by holding four fingers underneath, away
from the areola (dark area), with your thumb on top.
❀ Stimulate baby’s lips gently with your nipple until her* mouth
opens as big as a yawn. Arouse your baby’s senses of taste and
smell by expressing a few drops of milk.
❀ When her mouth is open wide, pull baby towards you quickly;
when the baby feels your nipple with her tongue, her lips will
close over the areola and seal it; both lips should be rolled outwards. You should see the sucking motion along the jaw line.
❀ To release the baby’s suction, gently place a finger in the corner
of her mouth until you break the suction.
STARTED
2 GETTING
WHAT HAPPENS?
At baby’s birth your first milk is colostrum, a yellowish
fluid rich in vitamins, protein and immune factors.
Breastfeeding often on cue will help the milk come in
gradually and the quantity to increase. As the colostrum decreases,
mother’s milk may look thinner and watery, but it is your baby’s
perfect miracle fast food.
Usually, the milk will be “let-down” and fill your breasts when
the baby starts to suck. You may feel the tingling sensation of your
milk letting down. But sometimes it happens earlier, spontaneously or in response to a baby’s cry, and the breasts fill up and leak.
If your breasts should leak, tuck breast pads in your bra to absorb
the extra milk.
HOW TO HOLD YOUR BABY
There are many breastfeeding positions; discover the one that is
most comfortable for you and your baby. Sit up as soon as possible. If you have had a Caesarian birth, you may need help to position yourself and your baby comfortably. Get help from nurses,
your doctor, midwife, or a lactation consultant.
* The use of “she/her” also includes “him/he.”
5
LOOKING
AFTER
MOM,TOO
6
WORKING AND
BREASTFEEDING
7
BREASTFEEDING
AND PREGNANCY
HOW MUCH?
A breastfed baby needs frequent feedings. Allowing your infant to
nurse at need (ranging from eight to 12 times in a 24-hour period),
will help establish your milk supply. Wake a sleepy baby during
the daytime to feed her, especially if she sleeps for long stretches
at night.
Your baby is likely getting enough when she has six or more
wet diapers a day, has frequent bowel movements, and is gaining
weight and growing longer.
3
REMEMBER,
IT’S THE
LAW OF
SUPPLY AND
DEMAND!
4
THE
COMPLETE
FOOD
T
he more your baby nurses, the more milk
you produce. As your baby gets older, she
may nurse every three to four hours and be
content. Your baby may have growth spurts in
the first few months. Often they are around three
weeks, six weeks, three months and six months.
Frequent feedings, perhaps every one to two
hours for a few days, will help increase your milk
supply and satisfy her increased appetite.
Remember that your baby’s nutritional needs can be completely
met by your milk supply without added supplementary feedings.
B
reast milk is the most balanced food you can
offer your infant! It has just the right level and
quality of nutrients to suit your child’s first food
needs. It contains antibodies that reduce the likelihood of allergic reactions. Breastfeeding aids the
return of the uterus to normal size, allows mom and baby to begin
a special relationship, and is convenient and economical. With
breastfeeding, there is no need to sterilize or warm bottles, nor are
there any bottles to take when you leave home with your child.
The process is simple, natural, free and safer for the environment!
I
n the early days, your nipples may be tender.
Because this part of the body is not usually
exposed, nipples need lots of air and light to
toughen.
For the first few days, expose your nipples to air
or light after each feeding. Allow some breast milk to dry on your
nipples; it has lubricating and anti-infective properties.
Change nursing pads when they are wet. Sometimes breasts
get swollen and hurt because of increased blood supply and the
accumulation of milk. This condition is called “engorged breasts.”
Wearing a well-fitting bra, applying warmth using warm towels or
taking warm showers to ease the milk flow, expressing some milk
before feeding to relieve fullness, and nursing frequently to allow
your breasts to empty will help.
Proper positioning of baby on the breast is also very important. Ask for help from the nurses to learn comfortable positions
for you and your baby.
When your milk supply is established, you may learn to
express or pump milk so that it can be left with a caregiver to give
to the baby, and then you can get out occasionally or just have a
well-deserved break.
I
t is important to understand that the
first weeks are the learning period for
both of you, and that time, patience and
humour will solve many difficulties.
During this time, your milk supply is becoming established, so
it’s difficult to have anyone but you feed the baby. After that, you
can express milk manually or mechanically by using a breast pump
before you go to work or to school, for feedings throughout the
day. Your own breast milk can be stored in the refrigerator (for up
to 48 hours) or frozen. Refrigerate or freeze breast milk in plastic
bottles or bags and date them. Then warm it up in hot tap water
before it is used. (Using a microwave oven is not recommended.)
D
on’t rely on the old myth that you
won’t get pregnant because you
are nursing! It’s not always true.
It may postpone the return of ovulation
and menstruation, but ovulation can occur, so you and your partner should use precautions! Discuss birth control alternatives with
your doctor.
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