Establishment of breastfeeding
Establishing: four days to eight weeks
This stage is when you are likely to be back home and continuing to establish breastfeeding.
Establishment of breastfeeding includes:
- learning how to breastfeed successfully with the support and advice from your lead maternity carer and others
- maintaining your good health (including nutrition and rest)
- getting support and advice from your lead maternity carer to overcome any breastfeeding problems
- developing problem-solving skills to maintain confidence to breastfeed
- continuing the commitment to make breast milk the only food and drink for baby
- enjoying the breastfeeding experience and your closeness to baby.
During this period you are likely to face some challenges including:
- pain (including experiences of mastitis, cracked nipples, and breast engorgement)
- difficulty with latching
- perceived or actual lack of milk, and/or baby’s perceived or actual hunger
- balancing the demands of other children
- lack of health service and family/wh?nau support.
At around six weeks, there is a transition of care from your LMC to Well Child/Tamariki Ora.
Why keep breastfeeding up to 8 weeks?
- Breast milk continues to protect baby from infections.
- Breast milk gives food and fluid for baby in the most easily digested way.
- Baby’s organs are still very immature and not ready for other foods.
- Milk composition and supply matches baby’s changing needs.
- Breastfeeding helps bond with baby.
- No need to prepare bottles for night feeds.
- It’s cheaper.
- Breastfeeding during immunisations provides pain relief for babies.
Remember any breastfeeding is good for a baby, so if you’ve made it this far, you’re doing well.
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