Breastfeeding: Interesting Facts (Part 1/2)

Breastfeeding, is it as easy as the women on television make it look? Baby is born, you place the nipple in the baby’s mouth and just like that, you are breastfeeding. It’s actually not. There’s a lot about breastfeeding that moms learn along the way. 

We’ve invited Ikhaya Le Mbeleko’s darling Midwife- Sister Nonhlanhla, to share some random but helpful facts about breastfeeding.  Watch the video below. 

BREASTS ARE NOT THE SAME!

Most women struggle with breastfeeding. Often they beat themselves up for not getting it right the first time. You need to remember, breasts- like mommies and babies, are not the same. Some women have large nipples, some have small nipples. Some Areolas (which is the darker more pigmented area on the breast around the nipple) are wider than others. As sister Nonhlanhla says, “baby doesn’t need the nipple, they need the areolas!”. This means that whatever the size, colour or shape,  the most important part is where the milk comes out. You and you baby will find your flow. Keep on trying.

One thing that is common for moms are the components that make up healthy breast milk. According to studies and the National Perinatal Association, breast milk contains 90% water. The other 10% contains carbohydrates, minerals, fats, vitamins, enzymes, stem cells and hormones. Enough nutrients for a strong, growing newborn. 

WORK AT THE BABY’S PACE. 

It may be difficult to gage whether the baby is full. To help us, Sister Nonhlahla explains the different sizes of a growing baby’s stomach. What’s important to remember is that your baby will direct you. 

Ikhaya Le Mbheleko encourages frequent feeds. Feeding your newborn on demand allows for more bonding time. This will help you learn more about how long your baby feeds for. 

HOW TO LATCH 

Latching can be an extreme sport with newborns. Here are some tips for new moms: 

  1. SQUEEZE: Mom, hold your nipple close to your baby’s upper lip. Squeeze out a little bit of her milk to make the baby smell it.
  2. TICKLE: Tickle your baby’s lips with the nipple to help the baby open their mouth wide.
  3. AIM: Aim for the inner top of your baby’s mouth. This will help you so get as much nipple and areola into their mouth.

In Part two of the Breastfeeding tips, we learn how to hold the baby. Visit us again to Check out how to hold your baby while breastfeeding. If you’re still pregnant, here’s a great video to help you prepare- 9 Changes to the Body during Pregnancy

Breastfeeding