Breastfeeding can be hard. It’s natural, normal, and even essential for babies and mothers alike, but sometimes that doesn’t make it any easier.
Before getting in too deep, though, make sure you’re doing everything you can to avoid common mistakes in breastfeeding. Whether you’re a new breastfeeding mom or have had a child before, you’re sure to have come across some tricky problems.
Luckily, many of these issues can be avoided. Want to give your baby the perfect start? Keep reading to learn how to avoid the most common breastfeeding mistakes.
Table of Contents
1. Not Latching Correctly
A poor latch can lead to improper milk transfer, sore and cracked nipples, and even engorgement. To avoid this incorrect latch, it is important to position the baby properly. Make sure the baby is tummy-to-tummy, with the baby’s head and chin in line with where the mother’s nipple is pointing.
Let the baby’s nose be the only thing touching the mother’s breast and encourage an open, wide mouth. Mothers should also watch for the baby’s bottom jaw to move down and back to latch on securely.
2. Not Nursing Frequently Enough
Many breastfeeding mothers worry that if they nurse too often their milk supply will decrease, but this is not true. It is important to nurse frequently to establish a good milk supply. It is natural for babies to want to eat every couple of hours, and this should be encouraged.
Newborns may need to nurse every 1-3 hours, including at night, and this is completely normal. To avoid not nursing enough, mothers need to make sure they have a good daily breastfeeding schedule and stick to it. They should also monitor their baby’s cues and feed them when they show signs of hunger.
3. Not Drinking Enough Water
Breastfeeding mothers should be especially aware of not drinking enough water since dehydration can cause the milk supply to decrease. It is important to stay hydrated with water, as well as other beverages like milk, juice, and tea. A good rule of thumb is to aim for 8-10 glasses a day.
4. Using Pacifiers or Formula Supplements
Pacifiers can cause nipple confusion and can interfere with the baby’s ability to latch properly and produce a healthy milk supply. In addition, supplementing with formula can cause a decrease in milk production in the mother.
It can interfere with proper feeding, as the infant is only able to receive certain nutrients from breastfeeding and not from the formula. To avoid such risks, it is important to create healthy and consistent breastfeeding routines, avoid using pacifiers and formula supplements and limit their use when needed.
5. Not Seeking Help When Needed
A common mistake is to assume that you should be able to figure it out yourself and, as a result, not seek help and support when it is needed. To avoid this mistake, it is important to be open and honest about your needs and not feel ashamed to reach out for assistance.
Reach out to your local midwife or lactation consultant, who can provide support or advice. Additionally, look at online forums and education resources or go for online breastfeeding class sessions that can help to provide valuable and up-to-date information.
Avoid These Mistakes in Breastfeeding
By following these tips and avoiding the mistakes in breastfeeding, your journey will be one of success and joy for both you and your baby. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help if you are having trouble; there are plenty of resources available.
Should you wish to read more articles aside from learning about the breastfeeding latch technique, visit our blog.