Breastfeeding & Bottle Feeding | Breastfeeding |
To or Not to
If you plan on breastfeeding I strongly recommend getting a breast pump. Please refer to this article on breast pumps.
If you pump you’ll want to store the extra breast milk. You can store it in plastic bags or other containers. Refer to this article for more information on storing breast milk.
Plastic Nipple Shields
As discussed in breastfeeding “Tips,” a lot of women at some point in the breastfeeding process use plastic nipple shields, such as the ones made by Medela or Avent. Generally, they are meant to be used for a limited amount of time if a woman has severely cracked nipples.
I used plastic nipple covers to help make my baby latch on since he liked the plastic texture of the bottle nipples. I even put milk in the nipple shields to encourage my baby to start sucking. I used nipple shields for six months, the entire time I was breastfeeding. I wouldn’t recommend always using the plastic nipple shields, but for me it was the only thing that worked.
A breast cream can also help if you have cracked nipples. The Lansinoh brand was recommended to me by one of my friends and I liked it. I didn’t use it much since I used the plastic nipple shields and thus did not have cracked nipples. My other friend said she had been told by her friend to put the breast cream on her nipples the last month of pregnancy to soften her nipples. She did this and said she never had an issue with cracked nipples.
While in the hospital, I made the mistake of using some stretch mark cream on my breasts which I believe was not toxic but did have a distinct taste and when my baby went to breastfeed he must have tasted some of it and was not happy with the taste.
Nursing bras are essential if you are breastfeeding, it just makes the process much easier. It is nice to have a few extras. I found ones I liked at Target. I also got a nursing tank top which I really liked as you could wear it as a pajama shirt and it made the middle of the night feedings easier.
Breast pads are nice to have to keep your nursing bras protected. I liked the ones that had sticky backs to stick to the bra as the ones without the sticky back didn’t always stay in place.
Nursing Cover or Baby Sling
With my first baby I didn’t get one of these as I knew I probably wouldn’t breastfeed in public since we were doing a combination of breastfeeding and bottle feeding (with breast milk and formula). With my second baby, I was more committed to trying to solely breastfeed (with a few bottles of breast milk Daddy could give our baby occasionally at night) so I knew I would need a nursing cover.
My favorite cover was the one I designed: MOMMBY™ Peek-a-Bye-Baby™ cover. The cover functions as a breastfeeding cover and/or a burping cover. The cover has a v-neck opening to assist with latch-on and the cover allows your baby to be partially covered (a lot of babies do not like to be fully covered) while still providing you privacy. Please refer to the MOMMBY™ Store for more information.
A baby sling, such as the Moby Wrap, may also be helpful for nursing in public. With a sling, the baby is not only secure but can also nurse while being covered. I loved my BabyBjorn carrier, but I wasn’t able to breastfeed my baby when holding him in the carrier. Please refer to the "Baby Wearing Products" article for more information on baby wearing.
A lot of people use something like a Boppy Pillow to help get the baby to the correct position when breastfeeding. I didn't have one with my first child and it probably would have helped. I tried using regular pillows and they worked ok. With my second baby I bought a Boppy Pillow and it was exactly what I needed especially when breastfeeding an infant and running after a preschooler at the same time.
Something to note is that in my experience the Boppy Pillow works the best in a small chair like a rocking chair. I tried using it in the hospital and it didn't work very well when trying to use it in the hospital bed or the extra large hospital chair. At first, I was extremely disappointed in the pillow until I got home and realized it worked perfectly in my comfort chair. Most of the time I am unable to feed my baby girl while in my comfort chair since I'm usually in the family room, kitchen, or whatever room my active preschooler is in so I usually put an additional pillow under the Boppy Pillow and that helps get the pillow to the correct position.
Determining which chair you rock the baby in is an important decision. We love our Dutailier glider. Please refer to the “Comfort Chair” article for more information on picking a favorite comfort chair.
Do What Works for You and Your Baby
Overall, do what works for you and your baby to make breastfeeding an enjoyable process for both of you. Please refer to breastfeeding "Tips" for more information.
The MOMMBY Store
Please refer to The MOMMBY Store for the Peek-a-Bye-Baby™ nursing cover for baby to see mother™ (it also functions as burp cloth that won't fall off™). Please also refer to the MOMMBY Amazon Store which has some of my other favorite breastfeeding accessories such as the Medela Pump in Style or the Boppy Pillow.
Last Updated: October 2010; November 2009