East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust provides NHS hospital and community services throughout East Sussex
Involve loved ones as they can play a vital role in protecting, encouraging and supporting you and your baby to breastfeed.
Ask for support as there may be a few times where you may need to practical help. There are Midwives, Health Visitors and Breastfeeding Supporters to help you.
Breastfeeding is a skill that needs to be learnt by you and your baby. It may take time to get the hang of it, but keep trying as practice makes perfect.
Difficulties can occur from the baby not attaching to the breast properly, which can cause discomfort and pain. If you are having problems contact your local Health Visitor, Midwife or Breastfeeding Supporter as they can help you to overcome any difficulties.
Breastfeeding helps you and your baby get closer physically and emotionally with the bond growing stronger through time. Don’t forget skin to skin cuddles as well.
Breastfeeding has to feel right not just look right.
Many people don’t know where to begin when they start breastfeeding due to not doing it before or not seeing anyone breastfeeding before. Research as much as you can about breastfeeding by reading about it, asking friends or family members who have breastfed, talk to your local Breastfeeding Peer Supporter, Midwife, Health Visitor or GP.
Breastfeed as soon as possible and ask a Breastfeeding Peer Supporter or Midwife for help at the hospital as they can help and guide you on how to breastfeed.
Breastfeeding can take time to get use to and you need to be patient as you and your baby learn. It can be difficult and uncomfortable in the early days if your baby is not positioned correctly. If you have problems you can contact a Local Breastfeeding Peer Supporter, Midwife, Health Visitor or GP for guidance.
Look for feeding cues before the baby cried as they will be more receptive to feeding if they are not over hungry. Cues may be sucking on your finger or rooting.
Feed on demand as babies have tiny tummies and breast milk is easily digested. It is normal in the early days for babies to feed between 8 to 12 times per 24 hours. Let them feed for as long as they want.
Always offer both breasts at each feed as once breastfeeding has been established the stimulation of feeding increases the amount of milk produced and you will produce just the amount of breast milk that your baby needs.
Make sure your baby has a wide open mouth, with their tongue down, so that they are ready to latch on to the breast. You also need to ensure that the baby’s head is able to move slightly backwards.
The nipple should be the same shape before and after feeding. If it does change shape you may not be in the correct position for latching.