From the beginning of my nursing relationship with my youngest daughter (she’s eight months), I knew her latch wasn’t correct. I knew something was wrong and I asked for assistance from multiple lactation consultants. Each and every consultant told me her latch seemed to be good, to just grin and bear it and that things would eventually improve. After weeks of excruciating pain, I desperately called my midwife after my daughter spit up dark pink milk.
Here are 5 tips to overcome breastfeeding problems:
1. In Pain? Try Again!:
Her latch had become so poor it had caused me to bleed. What my midwife told me literally saved my breastfeeding relationship. She told me to use the relaxed or laid back position. In an instant, the pain subsided and I finally had hope. So, if you or any mom you know experiences pain while breastfeeding, tell them to immediately try a different position, especially the laid back position because breastfeeding should never hurt.
2. How to Nurse Modestly:
Due to last minute schedule changes, I have forgotten my cover-ups many times. However, because of those instances, I learned something that has now become a habit: I wear my cover ups! I always wear an outer layer of clothing (i.e. a thin cardigan, a cute kimono, or a cool scarf) that can be easily removed and used as a cover. So now, any time I am out and about and absent-mindedly forgot a blanket, I know I have something I can use to breastfeed in public and still be modest.
3. Biting Babies:
When babies start to teethe they bite, and sometimes they bite Mom. However, when your baby starts to cut teeth, that does not have to be the end of your nursing relationship. With my kids, I quickly learned there are a variety of reasons babies bite. If you pay attention you can figure out if yours is getting bored (wear or make a teething necklace), falling asleep (tickle their feet or disrobe them), or is full. You know your baby the best.
4. Leaky Faucet:
I think every breastfeeding mom has been there. You are feeding the baby on one side and the other side decides to spring a leak. Nursing pads are great, especially the ones you can wash and reuse. However, what do you do when, like me, you forgot them? There are other options. One mom I know uses feminine napkins, and they work well. If you don’t have one of those, then you can simply apply pressure to the opposite nipple while you are breastfeeding and it will keep that liquid gold from escaping.
5. Where to Nurse:
When you don’t feel comfortable enough to sit in a chair and nurse covered in front of others, here are some options. If you are at a restaurant, I suggest retreating to your vehicle briefly. At the mall or a big box store? Dressing rooms! Nicer department stores sometimes have a lounge part to the restrooms and some malls have family restrooms with an area designated for nursing moms. At someone else’s home? Ask to use a room that can be closed off for a few minutes. Business? Many times they will direct you to an empty office or empty interview rooms. At all costs, avoid typical restrooms. They are not comfortable and incredibly awkward.
Remember, you were able to successfully carry a baby inside you – you can successfully nurse your baby, too!
Moms, what have you done to overcome your breastfeeding problems?