Host: How can I be successful at breastfeeding?
Dr. Ann Kellams: First and foremost, decide to breastfeed early on even before you are pregnant. Decide that I am going to give this gift to my baby that is the best nutrition for the baby and I want to be able to do this. Women who decide earlier on are more successful. Before the baby comes, go to a class. Seek information, do some reading because the more you know about what's realistically expected in the first two weeks, the more successful you are going to be.
Once the baby is born we recommend keeping the baby with you in the room so as much as possible. Obviously, if there is a medical reason, they need to be out then, that's one thing, but keep the baby with you as much as possible. So if they are not screaming, crying, but they are awake and moving around that's a great time to try to nurse the baby. Try to get the baby to the breast assuming that your medical condition and the baby's medical condition allows it within the first hour of life and then offer the breast very frequently. Babies are not always born with the - "I am hungry" instinct. "I need to wake up and let somebody know about it right away.
" So they might need to be awakened or reminded gently that it's time to eat again. We recommend at least two to three hours. Keep in mind that it should not be painful. So if you are having discomfort at the breast when the baby is nursing, ask for help, ask for the lactation consultant or your nurse or the Pediatrician, somebody to watch the feeding and see if there is something we can adjust so that your tender tissue is not getting damaged in the process.