Celebrating Breastfeeding in Doncaster: Support, advice and information
The Big Latch On takes place each year during World Breastfeeding Week 1-7th August. Breastfeeding can be so difficult at the best of times, never mind during a pandemic! Whilst it is all virtual this year, we hope that the online event gives local breastfeeding mums somewhere to find support, advice and other mums going through the same thing.
Doncaster Health Visitors have pulled together some useful information, which we hope will help breastfeeding mums virtually.
If you’re a breastfeeding mum in Doncaster we hope you find this useful.
Positioning and attachment
Breastfeeding is a skill that you and your baby learn together and it can take time to get used to. There are lots of different positions you can use to breastfeed. You can try different ones to find out what works best for you.
Are you comfortable? Use pillows or cusions if necessary. Your shoulders and arms should be relaxed.
Are your baby’s head and body in a straight line? It’s hard for your baby to swallow if their head and neck are twisted.
Are you holding your baby close to you, facing your breast? Supporting their neck, shoulders and back should allow them to tilt their head back and swallow easily.
Always bring your baby to the breast and let them latch themselves. Avoid leaning your breast forward into your baby’s mouth, as this can lead to poor attachment.
Your baby needs to get a big mouthful of breast. Placing your baby with their nose level with your nipple will encourage them to open their mouth wide and attach to the breast well.
Try not to hold the back of your baby’s head, so that they can tip their head back. This way your nipple goes past the hard roof of their mouth and ends up at the back of their mouth against the soft palate.
See the NHS website for How to latch your baby on to your breast here
Read Start4Life’s Information on 3 common positions for breastfeeding here
There are some useful videos created by Best Beginnings, a charity creating supportive and informative resources for parents and parents-to-be.
A newborn baby’s stomach is only the size of a walnet, so they need to feed little and often. Your baby can have a good feed and be hungry again quite quickly. The idea behind responsive feeding, also called ‘baby-led’ or ‘on-demand’ feeding is that you respond to your baby’s cues. Breastfeeding is not only about your baby getting enough milk. Your baby feeds for comfort and reassurance too.
Many mums wonder whether they haven’t got enough milk if their baby is still hungry after a breastfeed.
As long as your baby is weeing and pooing often, and gaining weight, then you don’t need to worry. Baby’s should have at least six heavy wet nappies and two dirty nappies every 24 hours. All babies are different and your baby might feed at different lengths of time in the same day.
When your baby has finished the first breast, offer the second breast. Sometimes your baby will seem to be hungry all the time, because they are having a growth spurt. The more milk your baby takes from the breasts, rest assured that the more milk your breasts will make.
If you feed your baby when they need feeding, you’ll be helping make sure you make enough milk in the weeks ahead.
If your baby isn’t attached properly to your breast, they may still be hungry as they haven’t been able to get a full feed. In that case, your nipples will probably hurt a lot and might look a bit squashed.
If you have any worries about feeding your baby, the most important thing is to not struggle alone. Be sure to get support from your health visitor or midwife.
Here’s a really useful video from Doncaster Health Visitors with a demonstration of Hand Expressing.
Weaning and breastfeeding
The World Health organisation recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months of life and then alongside the introduction of solid foods at 6 months together with continued breastfeeding up to 2 years of age or beyond.
You can find more information about meal ideas on the Doncaster Health Visitors Instagram page and information about starting solid foods through the links below. If you have any questions or would like more information please contact your health visiting team on 01302 566776 (Doncaster) or 0800 019 9951 (North Lincolnshire)
Teething doesn’t mean the end of breastfeeding! We often hear breastfeeding mums say ‘I will feed until he gets teeth’. Take a look at this short video for some tips on managing feeding your baby when they are teething.
What’s in breast milk?
Here’s a video that might be helpful to breastfeeding mums, demostrated by Amanda, Doncaster Nursery Nurse and Breastfeeding Trainer.
Credit to Johanna Sargeant IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant)