Friday, January 23, 2015

Seven Breastfeeding Essentials

Real quick (can I do that, is quick + writing/talking a thing I can do? we'll see), I want to share some breastfeeding essentials.

1. Nighttime nursing bra. I don't wear bras to bed. Ever. Somewhere around 7th grade I was told it would cause cancer, so I never wore a bra to bed. Then, I breastfed. And my oh my I had to wear a bra to bed. A simple sports bra-type pull over will do just fine.

2. Lanolin. I only use this stuff for the first couple of weeks (which is why I recommend saving your $$ and just asking the hospital for a sample), because after a few weeks your body adjusts to your new routine and you won't use it anymore. Definitely put it on before every shower. Definitely. 

3. Comfy rocking and gliding recliner chair. Yes, with all those features. The wooden rockers have a great classic look to them, and they even make some really fancy breastfeeding gliders nowadays, but I'm recommending a Lazy Boy style recliner. You will spend many late night hours in this chair, make sure you don't mind sleeping in it (this even goes beyond breastfeeding, I've snuggled a couple of sick toddlers in our nursery recliner more than once).

4. Gerber 6ply Cloth Diapers. This is the only item where I get brand specific on you. And nothing less than 6 ply will do. Trust me. You need all the absorbency you can get. And I'm not just referring to the milk you'll catch when baby burbs, I'm talking about the milk you'll catch through out the entire feeding. While your body and your baby adjust to your new routine (about weeks 2 through 6) there will be leakage before, after and during most feedings. It's worth it, don't less the mess deter you.

5. Cover. With my first I just used the beautiful receiving blankets my mom made me. In some ways I do think they work best. However, they are bulky, and once I had more than one kid to pack a diaper bag for I just found they weren't as convenient for on the go carry. With my last two I've used udder-covers. Never pay full price for one; you can always find a free code (just pay shipping).

I originally made this list with just the above five items in mind (thus the collage), but I couldn't click publish without mentioning two more. Obviously ...

6. Daytime Nursing Bra (and tank top). This one goes without saying. You'll need a nursing bra. Five years ago I bought a couple basic ones at Motherhood Maternity; three kids later and they are still holding up fine (the nighttime one is the only one with noticeable wear). However, if I were to start from scratch right now I'd invest in the Bravado line. I'd love to splurge on one of their tank tops as well. Luckily my go to Buckle tank tops pull down just fine for breastfeeding. Oh, and here is where I'll tell you, you don't need to buy any ugly, specially designed nursing shirts. You've already suffered through limited style maternity clothes, just look for tees and tops that are loose enough to pull up or down with ease.

7. Breast pump. There are a few different reasons you might need a breast pump. If you are a working mom who wants to try and breast feed, you'll need one. If you want to breast feed exclusively but want an occasionally break (ie night out) from feeding baby, you'll need one. If you get mastitis and temporarily hate your life due to the pain, you'll need one. However, many hospitals rent them out, so you may want to check with your local hospital or lactation specialist to see if renting is an option.

If at all possible, have a cute toddler sitting by your side, keeping you company and mimicking you in the sweetest yet most hysterical way. 

And here are a few items that are noticeably absent from my list. A) The Boppy. I've used mine for several things, none of which are breastfeeding -- too bulky and uncomfortable. B) Disposable nursing pads. I bought a box and used two. That's all it took to realize I didn't like them. Fortunately, my daytime nursing bras have enough padding in them to catch any leaks. C) Nipple Shield/Shell/Protector. This is another item I tried and quickly realized I didn't like. In the beginning, lanolin will offer the most relief, and by the end there is no way that shield is powerful enough to save you from the pains of teething. The solution to that problem requires its own post. 


Anonymous said...

Love the Mini Mom!!!

Julie said...

I'd make a case for the boppy and the nipple shield.

Whenever I have a baby I get a giant knot in my left shoulder from holding them. The boppy helped relieve this when I nursed. I didn't use it for the whole time, but I used it at first, when they're so tiny.

The nipple shield is great if you have a tongue tied child. It was the only way to nurse my son with out being in excruciating pain for the 2.5 months he nursed.

Also, adorable picture of Nell. :)

Mom said...

No wonder I could not breast feed...I did not have any of that stuff, just milkless boobies!!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...