The choice to breastfeed is completely the mother’s call, and there are many reasons she might not be able to.
Some have issues with their health, some are constrained by time, the baby might be allergic to the milk protein, or the most common issue is the fact that the milk supply is insufficient.
This then leads to the baby not getting enough nutrition, which may cause the baby to not gain enough weight. They might cry from hunger as well.
The condition of the baby can then take a greater mental toll on the mother. If you are already going through post-partum depression and similar problems, talk to your Gynecologist in Lahore about it.
If the issue of milk supply is the sole reason you are unable to feed your baby, then know that you can take steps to improve your supply.
Do not use pacifiers or bottle
Bottles are handy, we will give you that, especially when you are going out. However, try not to do so early after the birth. Try to exclusively breastfeed for the first few weeks. Don’t even give pacifiers as well as both might decrease your milk supply then.
Compressing your breast
To encourage the flow of milk, you can also try to gently compress your breast. It is not necessary if the baby is drawing sufficient milk or is taking regular feeds. In that case, the suckling suffices.
Feeding as opposed to pumping.
For the first month, or even the first 2 weeks, you should consider feeding the baby directly from your breast, as opposed to pumping. Basically, your body produces milk depending on how much of it is suckled. If nota lot is suckled, body gets an impression that supply needs to be kept low.
With pump, naturally, the suckling is mediocre at best. However, a baby takes their due share of the milk, and are better at the action of pumping out the milk from the breast.
Frequency of feedings
A newborn baby requires more frequent feedings. Therefore, try to feed them at least every 3 hours, and sooner even if they give cues like sucking on their hand, smacking their lips etc.
The more you feed, the better your milk supply gets.
Make sure baby doesn’t sleep during feeding
It is common for the newborn babies to sleep during feeding. This not only then affects the milk supply, as only a fraction of milk is suckled, but the baby also does not get their required quota of the milk.
To prevent this problem, keep the baby awake during feeding. One helpful way is by tickling their feet, so they are not lulled to sleep.
You might also need to hand express to stimulate greater production of milk. Do this after the baby has nursed. so when you hand express, you give the signal to your body that more milk is needed. During the early phase, milk is thicker, so, you can even then spoon-feed it to your baby; since its thick, it might not make it through the nipple of the bottle.
You do not have to feed the baby from both breasts every time; they might not be that hungry. Just make sure that you keep alternating them regularly so that both are used.
It is pertinent that you latching technique be good. Otherwise, not only the baby will have trouble drawing up milk, but they will also have trouble breathing and swallowing then. A good technique to enable a proper latch is by first making sure the baby has their mouth wide open, then tip their head back slight, and hold them by their shoulders.
Moreover, lack of proper latch also makes breastfeeding painful. Swollen and sore nipples that have you running to your gynecologist may be due to poor latch as well.