Re: Anyone with tubular breasts?
Welcome to the forum a congratulations on the baby to come!
I'm not a mom with tubular breasts, so hopefully it's okay if I answer your questions from an academic rather than a personal perspective.
The fundamental thing about breasts is that you can't necessarily tell by outward appearance alone how well your breasts are going to work when it comes to milk production. Having tubular breasts is an indication of a potential problem, not a guarantee. The breast changes you are seeing are certainly a great sign that you will be able to produce milk, and that the only question is going to be how much- and that's something you have in common with all women! The great thing about breastfeeding is that it does not have to be all or nothing. Any amount of milk you can produce for your baby is great. And even if you never made a single drop, you could still "dry nurse" your baby, and even feed your baby exclusively at the breast by using a nursing supplementer (e.g. Medela Supplemental Nursing System, Lact-Aid).
I know that a lot of moms with tubular breasts choose to do breast augmentation. If you had augmentation, that could potentially pose a further hurdle to production because any breast surgery has the potential to disrupt the network of glandular tissue and the ducts that drain it.
The things you can do to maximize your chances of success at nursing are the same as for any other mom. Here's a list:
- Nursing goes best when mom and baby are both healthy and strong after birth. So you want to strive for the best birth possible. In particular, you want to avoid things like induction of labor for non-medical reasons (inductions increase the risk of the mom having a difficult or complicated birth and/or a c-section) and use of narcotic pain relievers (they can cause your baby to be born very sleepy and unwilling to nurse). You also want to choose your labor pain relief options with care- all medical pain relievers carry side-effects which can make birth longer or more difficult and lead to more complications. This isn't to say you should not use pain relief if you require it- just that you should know your options and choose carefully among them.
- Presuming your baby is born healthy, have him/her delivered immediately onto your bare chest. Most babies will nurse within a few minutes of birth, and you don't want to waste that opportunity. Your baby will warm up best with skin-to-skin contact with you- all he/she needs is a little hat and a blanket tossed over both of you.
- Delay all routine procedures (bath, bracelet, weigh and measure, footprints, eye ointment) for an hour or more after birth- it is much more important that you get a chance to bond and nurse and enjoy your baby!
- Room in with your baby. Healthy babies do not need to spend time in the nursery, and your baby will nurse more and you will learn his nursing cues faster if he's right there with you.
- If you do send your baby to the nursery, make a sign for his bassinet that says "I am a breastfed baby, no bottles or pacifiers please. Bring me to my mom every time I cry, or every 2-3 hours if I don't."
- Do not introduce artificial nipples unless it is medically necessary. Babies latch differently on bottles and pacifiers than they do on the breast, and that can screw up their ability to nurse.
- If the hospital has a lactation consultant, make sure you see her ASAP. I also strongly recommend engaging an outside LC, preferably one who is an IBCLC, and calling her if you experience difficulties. In fact, I would look for the IBCLC now and get to know her, and explain what challenges you think you could be facing.
- Make sure you have a breastfeeding-friendly pediatrician. Your local La Leche League meetings are a great place to ask for doctor recommendations from other moms. You want a doc who understands normal weight gain in breastfed babies and who does not discourage nursing even when mom needs to supplement.
- Familiarize yourself with normal weight loss in newborn infants (up to 10% of birthweight is considered normal and does not require supplementation) and also normal diaper output for breastfed newborns: http://kellymom.com/bf/got-milk/supp...s/enough-milk/
- Fill up your freezer with heat-and-eat meals. You won't have time to cook once your baby arrives!
- Surround yourself with helpful people. Helpful people walk your dog, scrub your floors, clean your toilets, do your laundry, and cook or obtain take-out for you. They do not expect you to wait on them or to hand the baby over to them so that they can enjoy it.
Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"