Breastfeeding is also considered as the final phase after third trimester of your journey to motherhood. The amazing benefits provided by breastfeeding cannot be denied and hold equal importance through the world.
Breastfeeding holds a crucial part in maintaining the health of new mom – not only physically but emotionally and mentally as well. Besides providing for physical health benefits, it also provides the mother with a different level of emotional satisfaction. Furthermore, it keeps all the nutrients from various food sources readily available for your baby all the time. Moreover, it is clean and always maintains the just perfect temperature to cater to the hygienic requisites of the crucial process of nursing.
Here are some nursing habits which, if not taken care of, can harm the baby in various ways.
1. Not Removing the Milk Completely
If the milk is not drained properly from the breast, you might face problems like reduced milk production and breast engorgement. This can further lead to problems like mastitis or breast inflammation thus leading to poor feeding for the baby since the milk doesn’t flow properly in such conditions. Emptying the milk completely from both sides helps to prevent this problem. Warm breast compress, frequent feedings, using a breast pump, or massage are some tricks that help to reduce these problems.
2. Poor Latching or Attachment
It is important for a healthy breastfeeding process to achieve good attachment by the baby to the mother’s breast. This is known as latching. Improper latching can be a cause for pain during breastfeeding, fissured and sore nipples, and cracks on breasts. All this further leads to improper feeding and reduced nutrition for the baby as persisting pain prevents the mother from feeding the baby well.
3. Maternal Physical Health
It is seen that new moms are extremely worried about the baby and highly burdened with responsibilities. This can affect the mother’s stamina and physical health. An undernourished mother doesn’t have sufficient energy and desire to breastfeed.
4. Infrequent Breastfeeding
It is recommended for a mother to breastfeed the baby every 1-3 hours. If the baby is fed infrequently, breast milk gets accumulated in the breasts. Failure to drain this breast milk can lead to breast engorgement or swelling, blocked breast ducts, and mastitis along with pain. This further leads to decline in milk flow thus providing poor nutrition to the baby.
Being a new mom is a tough job in itself. Same is the case with breastfeeding. As a new mother, you might be trying to manage all this on your own. Well, the physical and emotional can drain the resources. It becomes tough to take care of a new baby’s needs along with other responsibilities at home or work. As a result, the baby doesn’t get proper nutrition and warmth from an exhausted and tired mother who feels alone and isolated. You can seek help from your partner to share your parenting experiences and get helps with things like baby positioning, stress relieving, and household chores. Another good option is to talk with friends or cousins who have breastfed their babies to get experience tips on controlling anxiety of a new mom.
6. Uncomfortable Baby Positions
Breastfeeding is not an easy task for a new mother. Remember, it is very important to sit in a comfortable position during the process to ensure sufficient feeding time for the baby. For example, if you do not have a support under your arms, you might feel fatigue or a pinching sensation as you will get tired soon. Besides, if positioned improperly, the baby also needs to put in greater effort to reach milk and might feed lesser due to fatigue or tiredness. Therefore, use cushions or pillows to provide support to the baby and your arm as well, use a foot rest, if required, or lie down on your side, and most importantly, sit on a comfortable chair or bed.
7. Maternal Depression and Anxiety
It is completely natural for a new mother to have concerns regarding breastfeeding. The primary concern is if she would be able to perform it properly. Post partum depression, stress, and lack of confidence to breastfeed are common traits of a new mom. All these can lead to poor attachment between the mom and the baby as well as infrequent and decreased breastfeeding duration. All this further deprives the baby of the essential nutrition and warmth by the mother.