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BEST START

SUCCESSFUL BREASTFEEDING

Breastfeeding is the gold standard in infant feeding. Breastmilk provides immune support with amazing antibodies to give your baby everything they need and the best start for a healthy life. The American Academy of Pediatrics (aap.org) recommends exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months, introducing foods after 6 months of life, and continuing breastfeeding for a year and beyond. The World Health Organization (who.int) recommends breastfeeding for two years and beyond. 

GETTING OFF TO THE BEST START BREASTFEEDING 

The Global Health Media Project share Breastfeeding education with moms and babies all over the world. 

For information including videos on latching, breastfeeding, positions, hand expression, and much more, please go to 

https://globalhealthmedia.org/videos/


The Global Health Media Project share Breastfeeding education with moms and babies all over the world. 

 

 

The information below will help you and your baby get off to a great start. 

  • Place your baby skin to skin in the early days of life; this helps to initiate feeding. Skin to skin following birth has been very beneficial for the baby and helps initiate the first feeding. 

  • Watch your baby for early feeding cues…lips smacking, licking his/her lips, rooting. Crying can be a late feeding cue. In the early days and hours, many times, and awake baby is a hungry baby. 

  • Feed baby on demand; your goal is at least 8-12 feedings in 24 hours. The baby may be very sleepy and may not be interested in eating in the first 24 hours. If the baby is too sleepy to eat, place baby skin to skin, and offer the breast every couple of hours. You can also try to hand express some colostrum into the baby’s mouth to peak interest. 

  • After the long sleepy stage, which can happen in the first 24 hours of life, the baby may frequently wake to eat and eat continuously for several hours. This is known as cluster feedings and is normal newborn behavior, especially in the baby’s second night of life. The cluster feedings help transition your milk from colostrum to mature milk. Cluster feedings also happen when the baby is going through a growth spurt. 

  • In the early days, be sure to offer both breasts to the baby as much as possible. Once your mature milk is in around days 2-5, your baby may take only one side per feeding, be sure to feed on the other side for the next feeding. Usually, you will know the baby is done with feeding as he-she will fall asleep or come off the breast. At this time, you can feel that your breast has emptied or softened. Feeding lengths can vary between 5-45 minutes. If the baby is still hungry after feeding on one breast, offer the other breast. Make sure to start the next feeding with the breast the baby didn’t feed on or fed the least amount of time. Keep in mind that your baby has a tiny tummy in the early days of life. Your milk is the perfect food and comes in the perfect amount for your baby.. see Medela pdf Tummy Size.

  • If your baby isn’t latching or nursing well following birth, a breast pump can help you establish and maintain your milk supply while working on breastfeeding. Colostrum and mature milk can be hand expressed or pumped and given to your baby by syringe, cup, spoon, or bottle. 

For information on establishing milk supply while separated from your baby or while your baby is having difficulties breastfeeding, see information on maximizing milk production. 

https://med.stanford.edu/newborns/professional-education/breastfeeding/maximizing-milk-production.html


Thank you to Jane Morton at Standford Medicine for sharing information on maximizing milk production.

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TEN STEPS TO SUCCESSFUL BREASTFEEDING

 

Every facility providing maternity services and care for newborn infants should:

 

  1. Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff.

  2. Train all health care staff in the skills necessary to implement this policy.

  3. Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.

  4. Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within one hour of birth.

  5. Help mothers how to breastfeed and how to maintain lactation even if they are separated from their infants.

  6. Give infants no food or drink other than breastmilk unless medically indicated.

  7. Practice rooming-in-allow mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day.

  8. Encourage breastfeeding on demand.

  9. Give no pacifiers or artificial nipples to breastfeeding infants.

  10. Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on a discharge from the hospital birth center.

The Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding form the basis of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, a worldwide breastfeeding quality improvement project created by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers also uphold the International Code of Marketing of Breast Milk Substitutes by offering parents support, education, and educational materials that promote the use of human milk rather than other infant food or drinks, and by refusing to accept or distribute free or subsidized supplies of breastmilk substitutes, nipples, and other feeding devices. 

This information is to be used at the discretion of the individual and is not a substitute for medical advice. Please contact your lactation consultant or Primary care provider for medical advice.

The page of resources was put together by Jodie Dresel, Registered Nurse and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant.

MORE ON

Breastfeeding & Pumping

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BEST START
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MAINTENANCE
BEST PRACTICES
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KNOW YOUR SIZE
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NATIONAL
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BACK TO WORK
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