8 Ways That I’m Gearing Up To Breastfeed

A few months ago a friend asked if I was ready to start breastfeeding again. The answer is yes and no. Yes, because I’m going to do it and have no hesitations about that choice. I was very successful with nursing my son and feel confident in my body’s ability to step up to the task again. I also know all the best resources for nursing mothers in my area so if I need help, it’s only a phone call away.

But on the other hand, I’m only halfway mentally prepared for the commitment to breastfeeding. And make no mistake, it is a commitment. You need to have your breasts in the vicinity of your baby or your pump at regular intervals and your whole schedule has to revolve around that. It’s a real adjustment and at times it’s hard to maintain a cheerful attitude about it. I have the additional stresser of dealing with my 4-year-old’s reaction to the restrictions on my activities in order to feed the baby; he’s a sweet kid who is very understanding, but I suspect that this will be the hardest adjustment for him to make.

The logistical and sibling concerns aside, there are some practical things I need to do to get ready for breastfeeding as well. These are all things that proved helpful to me with I was nursing my son and hopefully they’ll be useful for you too!

  • Nipple First Aid 1 of 8
    Nipple First Aid
    Chances are, you'll experience some level of discomfort when you first start nursing. The tender skin of your nipples is not used to being touched that much. Once you get used to nursing, it should resolve itself, but in the meantime, gel pads or lanolin can be a real lifesaver. Also, dab a few drops of breast milk on sore spots — it really helps heal everything quicker!
    Purchase from Buy Buy Baby for $24.99 each
  • Breast Pads 2 of 8
    Breast Pads
    I know. No one wants to think about leaking. No one wants to wear the equivalent of a maxi-pad for your boobs in your bra. But just bite the bullet and get some to have around while your supply regulates. You'll be glad you did.
    Purchase from Buy Buy Baby for $5.99 each
  • High Protein Snacks 3 of 8
    High Protein Snacks
    I CRAVED protein when I was nursing. My body needed fuel to produce milk and it demanded the good stuff. I always had a supply of nuts, cheese, and trail mix around to keep a steady stream of protein going into my system.
    Photo Credit: photo stock
  • Water Bottles 4 of 8
    Water Bottles
    I was also thirsty as a runner on a hot day when I was nursing. I invested in some high quality water bottles and took them everywhere with me so I didn't have to keep hunting down convenience stores to buy water. Cheaper for me and better for the environment!
    Available at Sigg in all different price ranges
  • Research Lactation Consultants 5 of 8
    Research Lactation Consultants
    Check with your OB, midwife, doula, pediatrician and friends about lactation consultants in your area. Get testimonials if you can, find out if they make house calls, and put their numbers on the fridge so you can call them easily if you need help. Breastfeeding takes some skills, and finding a lactation consultant who can help both you and the baby develop those skills is a lifesaver.
    Photo Credit: photo stock
  • Supply Boosters 6 of 8
    Supply Boosters
    There are foods, herbs and teas you can use to boost supply and having one or two on hand might be helpful. Oatmeal is a go-to supply booster for many moms. I used fenugreek extensively when I returned to work to keep my supply steady even when I was pumping. Drinking lots of water is also extremely important. If you don't think you're making enough milk, talk to your doctor or a lactation consultant first.
    Photo Credit: photo stock
  • Pillows — Borrow Before You Buy! 7 of 8
    Pillows — Borrow Before You Buy!
    Nursing pillows rock. But they may not all rock equally for you. If you can borrow a couple from friends to try before you buy, do it! Better to know what works for you before you plunk down a bunch of money on a fancy pillow.
    Purchase at My Brest Friend for $44
  • Wait To Get Fitted For Bras 8 of 8
    Wait To Get Fitted For Bras
    It's worth it to have a couple of nursing tanks or inexpensive bras on hand before you deliver but wait until your milk comes in to make a major investment. That way, you'll know what size your breasts are going to be before buying bras. Get professionally fitted if you can (some lactation consultants do that). And go back in 6 months when you've lost a chunk of the baby weight to get refitted. You'll be shocked at how much your breasts change!
    Purchase at Bravado for $49

Photo credit: photo stock

Article Posted 4 years Ago

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