Overcoming Any Breastfeeding Obstacles

Discover common nursing concerns and next steps.

Congratulations on breastfeeding your new baby. According to the CDC, babies can thrive on breast milk alone for at least the first six months of life. As a new and nursing mom, you’ll need plenty of support. Lean on your friends and family and seek support online and from qualified lactation consultants who can help you through the early ups and downs of nursing. Here are some tips to get you through the breastfeeding obstacles that most moms face:

Difficulty with baby’s latch
Babies don’t always latch easily. If your baby fusses at the nipple or her latch causes you pain, you may need to adjust the way you breastfeed. When you’re already sleep-deprived and unsure, this isn’t an easy task. If illustrations and tutorials aren’t clear enough to improve baby’s latch, talk to a lactation consultant who can give you one-on-one help.

Pain while breastfeeding
Most nursing moms experience discomfort during engorgement, as well as pain or sensitivity at the nipples. If this pain is persistent or frequent, it could be a sign of a problem. Early nursing problems like clogged ducts and sore nipples can be discouraging, but they’re usually manageable with the right methods.

Getting enough milk
Your pediatrician will give you guidelines to measure how well your baby is eating. While newborns are small, effective feeding is measured at home in terms of wet and messy diapers. If you feel that your baby isn’t eating enough, or that he’s overly fussy about breastfeeding, seek a professional opinion. According to WomensHealth.gov, the best way to measure if a baby is eating enough is to have the baby's weight checked. Remember that it’s normal for young babies to eat very frequently. Make sure you’re drinking plenty of water and that your baby is draining the first breast fully when nursing.

If you are a new mom or mom-to-be, rest assured that the staff at St. Petersburg General Hospital is here for you every step of the way. Our Women's Services department can help you through pregnancy and delivery, and we offer a wide range of classes, including those for newborn care and breastfeeding.

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