breastfeeding problem

Having Trouble Breastfeeding? Here’s what to do!

There is a lot of pressure, stress and guilt connected to breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is seen by many as something natural, motherly, associated with femininity and also recommended by health care experts. Leading many women who struggle with breastfeeding to feel as if they are failing as a mother. This is obviously NOT true. It’s just one of the many myths and mom-shames connected to breastfeeding.

Why can’t I breastfeed my baby?

Breastfeeding is not easy for everyone with six out of ten women stating that they have difficulty. For example, milk production doesn’t start or the newborn doesn’t want to and/or cannot nurse. It is only in a few cases that newborn babies just sit at the breast and start drinking. Breastfeeding is something you must learn. It is not uncommon for it to take several weeks, sometimes months, before breastfeeding goes painlessly. Nor is it unusual for it not to work at all.

Read more: Breastfeeding is better for the baby. True or false?

What to do if you can’t breastfeed

Breastfeeding is a choice. Today, there are plenty of great options for mothers who cannot breastfeed. Most formulas are filled with all the nutrition and vitamins your baby needs. Bottle feeding also provides the same closeness during meal time. However, if you choose to give breastfeeding a try, here are some tips for breastfeeding success.

Tips for breastfeeding success

1. Get started as soon as possible

If you want to breastfeed, it’s good to try and get started as soon as your baby is born. The more you breastfeed, the more milk is produced (again: many women cannot produce enough milk – this is nothing to be ashamed over, it’s not abnormal).

2. Better positioning the baby usually equals less pain

Breastfeeding can be very painful. There is a discrepancy between the general perception of nursing vs its reality. Breastfeeding is seen as something cozy and beautiful when the fact is, it’s often tough and very painful.

The nipples may become tender and sore. Often this depends on the position of the baby. Make sure your baby does not just suck your nipple, they should have a good grip on the whole areola. Keep in mind that you should not put your breast in the baby’s mouth too quickly, be patient and wait until their mouth opens up for the nipple. It will help ease the pain.

3. Skin-to-skin contributes to longer (and better) breastfeeding

It is important to lay skin-to-skin with the baby immediately after it is born, or within one to two hours. Research has shown that skin-to-skin contact early in a child’s life contributes to longer breastfeeding. Additionally, more frequent skin-to-skin contact may cause the child to scream less.

When the child gets skin-to-skin contact with the mother, it starts its “crawling journey”. It begins to instinctively crawl on its legs to try and find a breast to suck on. Having this contact not only releases hormones in the woman’s body that helps soothe both baby and mom, but it also helps stimulate milk production.

Letting your child be against you, skin-to-skin, also helps in later stages to begin breastfeeding. It is also good for the connection (hence why babies should be skin-to-skin even with the parent who is not breastfeeding).

4. Not enough milk? Breastfeed more!

If you produce too little milk, try allowing the baby to breastfeed more frequently. Newborn babies should breastfeed as often as they wish. Regulating babies to drink only every two hours is a thing of the past, today the recommendation is that infants should eat as often as they want.

Read more: How fast does breast milk go bad?

5. And stress less!

Stress can also inhibit milk production. So as hard it is, don’t allow having a small amount of milk send you into a spiral of stress. This in turn may cause even less milk to be produced. Prioritize finding a way to relax.

Still not working? Don’t be afraid to ask for help!

A lot of women solve their breastfeeding problems themselves. But about a tenth of all women need the help of a specialist.

You can always turn to a lactation consultant and some hospitals have breastfeeding receptions. The website kellymom.com can be helpful. There is a lot of information on breastfeeding as well as other baby-related topics you might find useful.

Breastfeeding with products from Najell

Did you know that all of our products are designed with breastfeeding in mind? The Najell Pregnancy Pillow includes two integrated nursing pillows. This gives you the possibility to find a good, comfortable position for both you and your baby. When you’re out and about, carrying your baby around, we’ve made it easy for you to breastfeed in the baby carrier. Najell Baby Carriers are all designed to ease access to the mother’s breast. The Najell Wrap can be used skin to skin and is also easy to breastfeed in. Finally, with the Babynest SleepCarrier you are able to fold down one side of the nest. Meaning, you can breastfeed the baby lying down without having to move the baby from the babynest.