Breastfeeding Prep – Before Baby Arrives
If you’re a first-time mom or you haven’t breastfed before, you most likely have a lot of questions such as:
- “Will I be able to make milk?”
- “Will my baby be able to latch on?”
- “Will it hurt?”
- “How do I know my baby is getting enough milk?”
And probably many, many more!
If you’ve breastfed before but didn’t have a good experience, you’re probably thinking “Why would this time be any different?”
You are more likely to be successful if you know what to expect. Learn as much as you can about breastfeeding now to help prepare you for the first few days and weeks and to set realistic expectations for you and your baby.
There are many myths about breastfeeding. Moms often get misinformed, even by well-intended family and friends.
- Your breast milk is alive! It is designed to change to give your baby the nutrients needed to grow and develop normally at each age and stage in development.
- Breast milk components affect every cell in your baby’s body which affects their lifelong health.
- Formula feeding puts your baby at risk for health and developmental complications. Formula fed babies are at a higher risk of illness, infection, hospitalization, allergies, asthma, SIDS, a lower IQ, and chronic diseases like diabetes, obesity, heart disease and childhood cancer.
Getting help from a breastfeeding expert will help you separate facts from myths. WIC has Certified Lactation Counselors (CLCs) and Breastfeeding Peer Counselors that provide free breastfeeding support during your pregnancy. There are also statewide Zoom breastfeeding classes and lactation support groups.
WIC will share many great resources to help prepare for breastfeeding. One is the HUG Your Baby Roadmap to Breastfeeding Success.
The Roadmap shows important changes that take place throughout the first year as baby grows and develops. For example, increased crying at 2 weeks old, restless sleep of a 1 month old, distracted 4 month old that doesn’t seem to want to breastfeed, or out of sorts behavior at 9 months when fear of strangers sets in.
Each of these changes, or stages, is a sign of normal behavior and development. However sometimes normal baby behavior can be misread as a breastfeeding problem. Being prepared for each stage will help you meet your breastfeeding goal!
The Roadmap includes short videos for each stage of development.
Before baby arrives, watch these videos…
- Why Choose to Breastfeed
- Predictable Bumps in the Road
- Prenatal: Prepare for Success as a Breastfeeding Family