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The Benefits of Breastfeeding Your Baby

The Benefits of Breastfeeding Your Baby

Breastfeeding is a special time between Mum and baby. Breast milk contains the nutrients your baby needs for growth and development and it is easily digested and absorbed by your baby.

It is recommended to exclusively breastfeed your baby until you introduce solid foods, which is usually around six months of age. At this time, babies start to need extra nutrients for continued growth and development.

Once you introduce solids, it is recommended to continue breastfeeding along with giving your baby solids until your baby is around 12 months old.


What Are the Benefits of Breastfeeding?

Breastfeeding is beneficial for both Mum and baby. Here are five benefits of breastfeeding:

  1. Breastmilk is a complete meal for your baby
  2. A natural source of nutrition for your baby
  3. Breastmilk helps reduce the risk of infections and illness
  4. Breastfeeding is free and convenient
  5. Can reduce the Mum's risk of breast and ovarian cancer, type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure

 

How Can I Prepare for Breastfeeding?

Your nursing space can be simple, but there’s a few things to take into consideration to ensure both Mum and baby are comfortable during feeding.

A common problem that arises for breastfeeding Mums is a sore neck and shoulders that occurs from hunching over when feeding. By laying your baby on a firm, curved nursing pillow when feeding, this helps to support both Mum and baby during breastfeeding and/or bottle feeding.

Ecostork loves the Bubnest Organic Nursing Pillow. This organic, lightweight and stylish pillow is perfectly firm and high to minimise neck and back pain. The pillow can be kept on your lap or around your waist for lower back support.

You can rest assured your baby will be laying on 100% organic cotton fabric and organic silk cotton wadding. The pillow has a zip-off cover that is removable and machine washable.

 

Bubnest Organic Nursing Pillow

 

Another important consideration is a comfortable nursing chair. The perfect chair for your nursery or quiet corner is the Quax Rocking Nursing Chair

The stylish and practical design offers maximum comfort and support with an integrated headrest and ergonomic armrests. The gentle rocking motion lets you lean back in comfort, yet it is easy to get up. 

The rocking motion of a nursing chair is soothing and may help babies with colic to calm down.

 

Quax Rocking Nursing Chair

During breastfeeding, you will often leak from the opposite side you are feeding on. To absorb these leaks, you can use breast pads, which can be slipped into your nursing bra.

Ecostork recommends bamboo reusable breast pads from Kiin. They are super comfy and breathable, absorb excess milk and reduce leakages. 

Made with a bamboo terry layer, these breast pads are softer against the skin and more absorbent than cotton or disposable pads. The slim design means that they fit into your nursing bra discreetly.

Kiin Reusable Bamboo Breast Pads

To help you and baby relax while feeding, white noise or other gentle sounds can be perfect as background noise in your nursery. 

Natural sounds relax you because they are a constant noise at a pleasant pitch.  Nature sounds like ocean waves, soft rain and gentle wind in a rainforest are perfect to lower your stress level and create a calming environment. 

If the background noises aren't your thing, simply closing the door and dimming lights will work just as well.

Other items to keep close at hand while nursing are books, headphones, tissues, your phone and the TV remote.  No mum wants to get up after settling down into a cosy nursing position and disturb their little one!

What Can I Do to Support My Breastfeeding?

A comfortable, calming, stress-free space will help you and your baby adjust to breastfeeding. It is ideal to choose a place where there are limited distractions and noises going on around you.

It's important that you and baby are calm and relaxed as you are both feeding off each other's energy during this special bonding time.

While breastfeeding, your body has a higher demand for you to drink more water, so set up a small side table next to your nursing chair to keep your water bottle, cup of tea and snacks on hand. 

Snacks you can have readily available with high water content are cucumber, tomatoes, apples and celery.  It is vital for your health and the health of your baby to maintain optimal hydration status, so if you are likely to forget to drink water regularly, you can set an alarm on your phone or leave notes around the house to remind you.

Other items to keep close at hand while nursing are books, headphones, tissues, your phone and the TV remote.  No mum wants to get up after settling down into a cosy nursing position and disturb their little one!

Is Breastfeeding Hard?

Some mothers find breastfeeding to be easy, while other Mums find it very difficult. Your first breastfeeding experience may throw a curveball and give you lots of ups and downs, but it’s important to know that’s ok - it's different for everyone. 

If you are having problems with breastfeeding, there is a support available. Ask for help from lactation consultants, doctors, midwives or your local breastfeeding specialist.

If you decide not to breastfeed or you are unable to, it’s good to know that formulas give your baby adequate nutrition. And if you need to supplement breast milk with formula, it doesn’t mean that breastfeeding has to stop completely.

When it comes to feeding your baby, ensuring you and your baby feel safe, calm and happy is the most important thing of all. Settling in to feed your baby is where you and your baby are going to learn from each other and grow a strong connection for a healthy relationship.

 

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