If you’re breastfeeding, you won’t need any bottles or formula at home. Your breastmilk supplies all the nutrition and liquids that your baby needs.
You will need the names and phone numbers of people who are experts in helping new mothers learn to breastfeed—the lactation consultants at our hospital or volunteers from La Leche League or the Nursing Mothers Council. These are people you’ll want to stay in close touch with during the early days of breastfeeding. (Ask the nurses at the hospital for their contact information.)
A professional breastfeeding counselor can help you position your baby correctly on your breast and nipple (known as “latching on”) to prevent sore nipples. A friend who has successfully nursed her baby can also be a great source of help and support.
Breastfeeding is a learned skill that can take some time to perfect. After being taught and guided during your hospital stay, breastfeeding problems that emerge at home can be frustrating and anxiety-producing. Call these lactation experts with any questions or concerns you may have; getting answers fast will help prevent little concerns from becoming big problems.
Note: Breastfeeding is not reliable for contraception; discuss appropriate methods with your care provider as needed.)
When it comes to breastfeeding babies, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that you:
Breastfeed exclusively for about the first 6 months and continuing. It supports breastfeeding for the first year and beyond as long as both mother and child want to, even through the toddler years.
Have easy access to your baby at night. Have the baby sleep in a crib or bassinet in your bedroom.
Have your newborn’s pediatrician or other healthcare provider evaluate your breastfed infant at 3-5 days of age and again at 2-3 weeks to be sure the baby is getting enough milk and growing well.
Ask your newborn’s healthcare provider to recommend a vitamin and dosage. All exclusively breastfed babies should receive a vitamin supplement.
See also ...
• Breastfed babies and weight gain
• Feeding on schedule or on cue
This message is not intended to provide individual medical advice. Always seek the advice of a physician or qualified healthcare provider for any questions you have about your health or medical condition, your breastfeeding issues and your infant's health. Never disregard, avoid or delay contacting a doctor or other qualified professional because of something you have read in our emails, webpages or other electronic communications.
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