Thursday, 28 January 2016

Breastfeeding Life Hacks

When I began breastfeeding, just over 8 months ago I was completely clueless. I thought I was bound to fail as I knew nobody who had breastfed and not one member of my family attempted to try when they had babies. I was one clueless girl searching google for anything to do with breastfeeding in the hopes it would help.

Now a days, I’m fully confident and sure of myself and my breastfeeding abilities. Baby and I went through learning this new skill together and I like to think I’ve picked up a lot of tips and tricks along the journey. I hope they help make other women's breastfeeding life easier.

  • Use a nappy as a quick fix breast pad. For the first two months I had a huge supply. I would soak through my breast pads an inordinate amount of times throughout the day, it was ridiculous! Things would get very messy. One day the only thing near to hand was a nappy. I simply placed it under baby’s mouth and it caught all the runoff milk. Lifesaver!

  • Leave bottles of water everywhere. I only recently learned that a breastfeeding mother should be drinking about 3.4 litres of water a day. I only began doing this in the last 2 weeks and it’s the one thing that has hugely boosted my supply. Bottoms up!

  • I wasted so much money on nursing bras, they’re still sitting in my drawer after only being used once. They’re ugly looking and make my boobs look odd so Instead I use a plain old sports bra at night and a bit of a fancier DKNY bralette during the day. They have no clips or hooks, simply lift your boob out and feed baby. These things are more appealing looking and really comfy too.

  • Wear a vest top under everything. I haven’t breastfed in public much. Maybe only once or twice in a place I felt extremely comfortable. Both times I was glad I was wearing a vest top under my shirt as it meant I didn’t have to expose my post baby tum and I don’t think people could even tell I was breastfeeding!

  • Use a bracelet to remember which boob you last fed baby from. This is an idea I read on a forum and it’s so clever. I use my Lokai bracelet and just swap it each time.

  • Learn to nurse lying down. This one was a hard one for me to grasp but once I did, it was a game changer! I remember the second night in hospital with baby. I hadn’t slept in 36 hours and my milk was coming in. Baby boy wanted nothing more than to cluster feed. I broke down crying to a lovely nurse and she latched baby on to me. It took me a couple of weeks to get the hang of this myself. When I did it was a lifesaver as it meant my boyfriend could wake up in the night and attach baby to me, I basically stayed asleep!

  • Use crossed arms to avoid leaking. If you feel you milk letting down, cross your arms really tightly and squeeze them. This stops them pesky wet patches if you don’t have a breast pad.

  • Lansinoh or lanolin cream for chapped nipples. A tube of this stuff is kind of expensive, although they offer you a free tube in the hospital. It really is a must have. I even use it on nappy rash and my own chapped lips, it works wonders!

  • Eat healthy all the time. Around the three month mark I lost all my baby weight...and some more. I thought this was the best thing ever. I was eating extra and losing weight? Doesn’t get much better! Then baby started eating and now by 8 months he nurses a little bit less. I’ve began to put on an extra few pound and I really need to look at my diet. It was fun while it lasted!

  • You don’t have to sterilise the pump attachments after every use. When I need to pump, it’s usually first thing in the morning, lunch and then evening. My nurse mentioned to me after my last visit that it's ok to simply pop the pump attachments into a sandwich bag and store it in the fridge in between pumping sessions if it’s only for a few hours. This is such a time saver!

I gathered all of these tips up along the way either by accident or stumbling upon it online. They’ve been a huge help to me and I hope they can help other women. I’ve reached the 8 month mark now and I can honestly say it’s the most rewarding thing I’ve ever accomplished. It is worth any bit of pain at the start and it’s a breeze now compared to bottle feeding!

Happy breastfeeding ladies!


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  1. Fantastic tips I did pretty much all of these. Learning to feed lying down was the saver for me, made it so much easier at night. I've stopped feeding now and still wear a vest under everything can't get used to not doing it. Thanks for linking to #PickNMix

  2. Great tips! I love these and even as a mum that has breastfed one baby already, I've picked up a couple of more here so thanks for sharing them on #MarvMondays. Emily