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Thread: I'm So confused Please someone respond!!!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    3

    Default I'm So confused Please someone respond!!!

    Hi,
    I am new to breastfeeding. I am due in about 8 weeks. I have been reading so many books and looking at so much information that i am confused about how to breastfeed. Here are my questions???
    How often do i breast feed?
    How will i know when baby is wanting to feed because when baby is first born it does nothing but sleep and poop and eat. But from my other children they slept alot and most of the time they would not wake up to feed. Several time i would wake them up and feed them. My other children were not breastfeed. One book says that the baby will feed about ever hour for about 10-15 mins on each breast. But what do i do if baby does not wake up for 2 or 3 hours. Do i wake him up and feed him?
    How long on each breast for each feeding?
    Is it ok to freeze milk in little 4 oz bottles?
    I am sorry but I don't want to lose my milk supply when i does come in i was to make sure i am doing this right. I was reading in a book that the more i breastfeed the more supply i will have.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Wisconsin
    Posts
    195

    Default Re: I'm So confused Please someone respond!!!

    Ooh you're going to be just fine! I was online and wanted to reply since your post seemed urgent. All of your questions were normal and there are going to be so many helpful people around you after baby arrives. *hug* The nurses and lac. consultants will all help you get off to a good start with nursing. We all went through a first time, right? I did it about 5 months ago. I did just what you're doing: reading, talking to people, and asking good questions. It'll all be fine.

    I'll take a stab at a few questions but as you can see I've not been a member here very long. The LLL leaders on here are great!

    "How often do I breastfeed?" - I nursed DS pretty frequently at first. It took 5 days for my milk to come in. Be patient - sometimes it takes a while, and the colostrom is always so good for them.

    "How will I know when baby wants to feed?" - The nurses showed us typical baby hunger cues, such as eating his hand. Each baby is unique and probably the nurses will help you to figure out your baby's hunger cues before you head home.

    "How long on each breast per feeding?" - I can't remember the official guidance on this, but at first we would do about a half hour on one side at a time. I think baby is in charge of how long on each breast.

    "Ok to freeze milk in 4oz bottles?" - There are lots of supplies available for freezing. Medela makes nice little freezer bottles that you can pump into and freeze; I think they're 3 oz. Or special breastfeeding plastic storage bags are an option too. The frozen bags of milk thaw pretty quickly in a bowl of warm water.

    I'm very proud of you for your desire to breastfeed! Best wishes on the big day and your new wonderful breastfeeding experience.
    ***********
    Mommy to William, 4/29/09, 7 lbs 13 oz, 21 inches.
    Mommy to Evan, 3/18/06. 7 lbs 3 oz, 21 1/4 inches.
    Nursed both boys to 14 months
    Birth Doula
    Wisconsin!

    ***********

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    185

    Default Re: I'm So confused Please someone respond!!!

    Ok, you've come to right place. This forum is full of wonderful ladies with tons of advice, so don't get stressed. You've got time and it's so awesome that you want to get this right.
    To answer your questions:
    Everyone has their own opinion on whether or not to wake a sleeping baby and how often. But in the beginning you might try offering the breast every 1 1/2 to 2 hours, even if that means waking the baby. I heard about time limits on the breast when I first started, but that didn't really work for me. I just let her on for as long as she wanted. And it's also ok if baby doesn't want both breasts at one sitting. Just be sure to offer the other side next time. For the first 4 days before my milk came in, my daughter would either only nurse for like a minute or stay on forever. The important thing is to make sure that you're offering the breast often in order to stimulate the milk to come in.
    In my experience, the most important thing to establish a good supply is to feed at least every 1-2 hours in the very beginning or as often as the baby wants, which ever is most often. Feeding on demand is the way to go. And in the very beginning, before the milk comes in, the baby may want to just suck forever and that's ok. You're NOT starving the baby. Baby just needs that tiny amount of colostrum you are producing. Your milk will come in in a few days. (Mine took almost 4)
    As for storing milk in the freezer. I like using the milk storage bags made for the freezer. And I would recommend storing in 2 oz increments because it will reduce waste. I'm sure you'll get lots of other advice from everyone, so good luck!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    93

    Default Re: I'm So confused Please someone respond!!!

    I'm also new at bf. I have a 4mon old dd.
    The best thing to do is plan on feeding your baby every 2hrs or less. The baby will tell you, ie: rooting, sticking fist in mouth (though not a sure sign all the time). You will most likely have to wake your baby to feed for the first 4 weeks if he/she sleeps longer that 4 hrs. That also helps to keep the milk supply up. Your baby will eat as much to fill him/her up. It could be 5 mins or 45 mins. Also remember that babies like to be near their mommies, especially newborns.
    As far as the freezing of breast milk, you can freeze them in the 4oz bottles, but I preferre to use the Gerber breast milk freeze bags. That way I have the bottles to use to pump at work. I hope that this has helped. I know that I have not been on here long enough, but I have learned A LOT from all of these wonderful mommies on here. If there was something that I missed or that they would know, they'll put it here.
    Good Luck and congrats on the baby

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    80

    Default Re: I'm So confused Please someone respond!!!

    Wow! I would be overwhelmed too.. I felt like such an idiot when I was handed my dd. I had a C-section, and I was out cold. Once I was in my room they brought me the baby and said ok now bf. I had no idea what I was doing. I never read a how to book or took a class or had even the slightest thought I would not know what I was doing but was I wrong. First I could not get my nipple in her mouth. She would not latch on so I called my mom at 11:30 pm and she said, "Just plug her in, I don't remember." I was like what are you talking about. LOL I called mother in law and she said, "Grab your nipple with your two fingers like a peace sign and bring baby to you." Okay that worked. Then the nurse demanded I feed every two hours but baby didn't want to wake up so I lied to her and told her that yes she was eating every two hours without a problem. She was eating every 3 - 4 hours, with long stretch of 5 - 6 hours in between. The nurse didn't think I was doing a good enough job because of the position I was using so she sent in a BF expert. And she told me I was doing a fine job and had to follow my gut, that I was baby's mommy and I would now what was best for her. She was easy going and I was truthful with her. She told me milk supply was all mental, and she was right. I made up a little affirmation "I will have plenty of milk for baby," and I fed on demand. Never had a problem with milk supply. I watched for clues like baby turning her head, or arousal from sleep and hand to mouth. Through the 7 1/2 months of bf I found that offering one breast at a time was good enough for her and for however long she wanted to nurse, she never wanted a the second breast. Only through growth spurts, when they tend to feed more often, did she want both breast. As for storing milk, I agree with 2 oz at a time. I never did that but it makes sense. I through out a lot of milk that was never used. But you will do fine, just don't give up and if you think you are about to pray for strength, I did.. Good Luck

  6. #6

    Default Re: I'm So confused Please someone respond!!!

    Hi There!
    Congrats on your expected new baby! It's so great that you're preparing to breastfeed now. The time you are taking to learn and prepare will pay off!
    I'll try to answer your questions as best I can here.

    How often do i breast feed?
    Early and often! You want to try to breastfeed as soon as possible after the birth. In the early days, most newborns want to nurse very frequently, even almost constantly. This is normal and helps to bring your milk in. Here's an article that may help:
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/frequency.html
    and another one on colostrum:
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/colostrum.html

    How will i know when baby is wanting to feed because when baby is first born it does nothing but sleep and poop and eat. But from my other children they slept alot and most of the time they would not wake up to feed. Several time i would wake them up and feed them. My other children were not breastfeed. One book says that the baby will feed about ever hour for about 10-15 mins on each breast. But what do i do if baby does not wake up for 2 or 3 hours. Do i wake him up and feed him?
    The NUMBER of times the baby nurses per day is more important than the time between feedings. A newborn should be eating a minimum of 8 times per 24 hours, and most eat more like 12 times per 24 hours. Some babies will "cluster feed" or nurse very frequently at one time of day and then sleep a longer stretch of time during another part of the day or night. This article will help you determine if your baby is getting enough to eat each day:
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/enough.html

    Your baby should give you cues to let you know that he is hungry. Fidgeting, sucking/chewing on fists, rapid eye movement, grunting, rooting are all signs that baby is hungry. Crying is a late hunger cue. Try to feed your baby before he cries from hunger--sometimes newborns are frantic when they get to that point and it becomes very difficult to get them to latch on. Let your baby nurse as often as he cues or "demands".
    http://www.lalecheleague.org/FAQ/schedule.html

    How long on each breast for each feeding?
    When you breastfeed your baby, put him on one side and let him nurse until he's done, then offer the other side. Some babies will nurse at only one breast per session and that is okay. As long as both breasts are getting equal stimulation throughout the day, your supply should be good.

    Is it ok to freeze milk in little 4 oz bottles?
    If you aren't going back to work, you may not need to freeze milk at all. Many mothers prefer to freeze their milk in 1-2 oz increments for a newborn. That way less of the breastmilk is wasted if the baby does not finish all of the thawed milk. Some mothers use ice cube trays to freeze their milk, then they pop the cubes out and put them in a freezer-safe bag.

    I am sorry but I don't want to lose my milk supply when i does come in i was to make sure i am doing this right. I was reading in a book that the more i breastfeed the more supply i will have.
    No need to apologize! It's wonderful that you are asking these questions now. May I ask what book you are reading? I would suggest getting a copy of The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding. You should be able to get a copy through your local LLL group. You can also order it off the LLL website and get it from many of the major bookstore chains. It will answer many of the questions that you've asked here and more. Many mothers find it helpful to read this book before their baby comes and then have it as a reference guide during the early weeks of breastfeeding!

    Hope that helps. Feel free to post any more questions. We're here to help!
    Jen
    "Mothers are designed to be available to their babies--to help them make the transition into this big, wide world. To teach them to trust, and love, and feel good about being alive."
    --Elizabeth N. Baldwin, Esq., So I Nursed Him Every 45 Minutes

    Click here to find your local LLL Group
    How to tell if your breastfed baby is getting enough milk!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: I'm So confused Please someone respond!!!

    I was lucky to have a lot of helpfull nurses at my son's birth. There was a lac consultant that came and actually latched him on my nipple while I was in recovery (c'section). She answered all my questions about how to latch, how long babies eat (it varries) and how often (a wide range of varry there). I decided to let my son cue me on when he is hungry. Some days it feels like he is taken all my attention, I have him attached to me every other hour and am rocking or changing him, and can't get time spent with my 2 year old. Other days he will sleep away the afternoon, only waking to feed every 2-3 hours. Those nights he's up all night attached to me again. So even for one baby, it can varry.

    You're gonna do just fine I'm sure there WILL be times you just are so tired you want to give up, I gave up on my first son after just 5 weeks, and I regret it today. I didn't know there were groups, consultants, and online refrences I could google, post or call for help. It's so nice to have help now!

    SOrry. I didn't mean to make this a me post. I just wanted to share with you my own experience . HUGS and congrats on your soon to be baby!!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    8,018

    Default Re: I'm So confused Please someone respond!!!

    Best wishes for a safe delivery and a great start to breastfeeding! I noticed that your other children were formula fed. I just wanted to remind you not to worry if your breastfed baby’s sleeping/eating habits are different from your other children’s. Generally, breastfed babies eat more often and thus wake up more to eat. This is NOT because they are being starved or aren’t getting enough to eat. It is because they can digest breastmilk more quickly than formula. Incidentally, BM is also much easier on their little digestive systems!
    As PP have said, it can be a few days before your milk comes in, in which your baby will probably want to BF a LOT. This, also, does not mean that baby is starving. Almost all babies lose weight in the first few days, and it is generally a very bad idea to supplement with formula when your milk supply is coming in.
    Best of luck!

    Molly

    Loving mama to JP (DS, 1/03 ~ nursed 6 mos), EL (DD1, 9/05 ~ nursed 4 yrs), EJ (DD2, 3/08 ~ nursed 3 yrs 9 mos), and
    JM (DD3, 6/12 ~ currently nursing), all born naturally
    Devoted wife to SAHD P, my hero
    A few of my favorite things that I've discovered on the forum: co-sleeping, baby-wearing, tandem nursing, baby-led solids, cloth diapering, APing, selective vaccination...the list goes on

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