Self-Care Helps Moms Succeed at Breastfeeding
Intermountain Healthcare experts give four hints to succeed at breastfeeding
Salt Lake City, UT (PRUnderground) July 5th, 2022
“When moms have a baby, it’s easy to become so focused on taking care of this tiny human who is so dependent, that moms forget to take care of themselves. If moms are trying to breastfeed, and don’t take care of themselves, it will be harder for their body to produce enough milk for their baby to thrive,” said Katrina Jensen, a registered nurse with Intermountain Healthcare, who has worked in both labor and delivery and pediatrics.
Jensen encourages new moms to practice self-care to help them succeed at breastfeeding, by getting enough sleep, staying hydrated, eating healthy and reducing stress.
Sleep: With baby waking at night, the sleep part can be hard, so nap during the day when the baby naps.
Hydration: Drink six eight-ounce glasses of water a day. Plain water with no additives is best. It is a good idea to have a container of water next to you while you are breastfeeding.
Eat well: Eat plenty of vegetables, lean protein, fruit and whole grains. Fresh fruits and vegetables have more nutrients and anti-oxidants than canned. Limit the amount of processed foods that contain, white flour, sugar, refined grains, additives and preservatives. Breastfeeding moms need about 2,000 calories per day to maintain a good milk supply. If moms notice their milk supply is decreasing, they can try to eat more.
Reduce stress: It’s helpful for moms to not try to do too many things while they’re still recovering from childbirth.
Jensen shared “Five Things to Know to Help Make Breastfeeding More Successful.”
- Practice skin to skin contact. Benefits: it helps stabilize the baby’s temperature, breathing, heart rate. They cry less. It stimulates brain development. It encourages mom to breastfeed, improves milk production, reduces postpartum complications and depression.
- Let baby determine the feeding schedule. Nurse baby when they’re hungry. Watch for feeding cues: routing, sucking on hand, crying when not wet or uncomfortable. Babies have growth spurts and may need to nurse more frequently at times.
- Breastfeeding works by supply and demand. The more baby nurses, the more milk mom’s body will produce.
- Breast milk digests more quickly and easily than formula. Breast-fed babies need to eat often. The colostrum that’s in breast milk in the first few weeks is digested in about 45 minutes. Regular breast milk is digested in approximately 1.5 hours. Formula takes about 3-4 hours to digest.
- Lactation consultants can help moms who are having trouble breastfeeding.
For more information about lactation consultant services, contact a nearby hospital or visit https://intermountainhealthcare.org/services/pediatrics/services/lactation-consultation/.
About Intermountain Healthcare
Headquartered in Utah with locations in eight states and additional operations across the western U.S., Intermountain Healthcare is a nonprofit system of 33 hospitals, 385 clinics, medical groups with some 3,900 employed physicians and advanced care providers, a health plans division called SelectHealth with more than one million members, and other health services. Helping people live the healthiest lives possible, Intermountain is committed to improving community health and is widely recognized as a leader in transforming healthcare by using evidence-based best practices to consistently deliver high-quality outcomes at sustainable costs. For more information and updates, click here