Breastfeeding takes patience and practice. For some women, learning to
breastfeed can be frustrating and uncomfortable. It may also seem more
difficult, especially if your baby was born early or you have certain
health problems. The good news is that it will get easier, and support
for breastfeeding mothers is available!
Many new mothers wonder whether they should be on a special diet while
breastfeeding, but the truth is that you can take in the same number of
calories before becoming pregnant, and continue to enjoy the special meals
you know and love. Keep these important nutrition tips in mind.
DRINK PLENTY OF FLUIDS to stay hydrated. At least one glass every time you breastfeed.
LIMIT DRINKS WITH ADDED SUGARS, such as sodas and fruit drinks.
LIMIT THE AMOUNT OF CAFFEINE YOU INTAKE EACH DAY. Too much caffeine can cause the baby to be fussy or not sleep well.
TALK TO YOUR DOCTOR about taking supplements as an addition to healthy food choices.
Having a new baby and learning to breastfeed can be stressful. But it is
important for new mothers to take care of themselves. Stress affects your
body and can more likely make you sick. It can play a part in trouble
sleeping, stomach problems, headaches and mental health. Take these steps
to help ease stress while breastfeeding.
RELAX. Find a quiet, comfortable, relaxing place to nurse. This will help make
breastfeeding more enjoyable for you and your baby. Use this time to bond
with your baby, listen to soothing music, meditate, or read a book. Skin-to-skin
contact with your baby has a soothing effect.
SLEEP. If you don’t get enough sleep, your stress can worsen. With enough
sleep, it makes it easier to cope with challenges and stay healthy. Try
to sleep whenever it is possible.
SURROUND YOURSELF WITH SUPPORTIVE PEOPLE. It really does take a village to raise a child. Let family and friends
help you with housework or hold your baby while you rest or take a bath.
GET MOVING. Physical activity improves your mood. Your body makes certain chemicals,
called endorphins, before and after you exercise. These relieve stress
and improve your mood. If you are a new mother, ask your doctor when it
is okay to start exercising.
GET HELP FROM A PROFESSIONAL IF YOU NEED IT. A therapist can help you work through stress and find better ways to deal
with problems. Medicines can help ease symptoms of depression and anxiety
and help promote sleep. But not all medicines are safe to take while breastfeeding.
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist before taking any medications.
If you are feeling stressed and having problems with breastfeeding, call
us today to schedule an appointment with one of our Breastfeeding Support
Counselors. (509) 488-5256