When to Ask for Help with Breastfeeding: It’s Too Important Not to!

Help with Breastfeeding

There are numerous benefits of breastfeeding for both mom and baby, so when it is not going smoothly, ask for help instead of immediately turning to another source of feeding.

There are many long-term benefits of breastfeeding for both mom and baby, but although breastfeeding is greatly beneficial to both individuals, it is often not easy. Many times, new parents, and those around them, believe that breastfeeding will be instinctual and easy to do, but in fact, most women need time and guidance to establish a healthy breastfeeding relationship with their newborn.

If you or someone you love is struggling with breastfeeding, it can be helpful to review all of the amazing benefits of this feeding choice as a confirmation of the decision to breastfeed, while simultaneously reaching out to find assistance and help with breastfeeding from qualified professionals.

Breast milk provides the only nutrition a baby needs. It is easily absorbed and digested by baby and provides complete antioxidants, enzymes, immune properties, and live antibodies from mother. Breast milk also contains substances that naturally soothe infants. The benefits for baby of being exclusively breastfed include:

  • Stronger immune systems
  • Less digestive issues
  • Fewer colds and respiratory illnesses
  • Fewer ear infections
  • Fewer cases of bacterial meningitis
  • Better vision and less retinopathy of prematurity
  • Lower rates of infant mortality
  • Lower rates of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
  • Less illness overall and less hospitalization

Breastfed babies may become healthier children with:

  • Fewer instances of allergies, eczema, and asthma
  • Fewer childhood cancers, including leukemia and lymphomas
  • Lower risk of type I and II diabetes
  • Fewer instances of Crohn’s disease and colitis
  • Lower rates of respiratory illness
  • Fewer speech and orthodontic problems
  • Fewer cavities
  • Less likelihood of becoming obese later in childhood
  • Improved brain maturation

Mothers also benefit from breastfeeding their babies in the following ways:

  • Stimulates the uterus to contract and return to normal size
  • Less postpartum bleeding
  • Breastfeeding produces the naturally soothing hormones oxytocin and prolactin that promote stress reduction and positive feelings that may result in less perinatal mood and anxiety disorders including postpartum depression and anxiety
  • Fewer urinary tract infections
  • Less chance of anemia
  • Lower lifetime risk of certain cancers

If you or someone you love is breastfeeding and experiencing any of the following issues, it may be time to seek help from your medical provider:

  • Any nipple or breast pain – breastfeeding shouldn’t hurt, although a little soreness and discomfort early on may be normal
  • Engorgement (painfully over-full breasts)
  • Redness, pain or swelling in the breasts
  • Anxiety about breastfeeding
  • Baby having inadequate bowel movements and/or wet diapers
  • Inadequate weight gain
  • Baby experiences trouble latching on and/or it is painful to mom when baby latches onto the breast
  • Baby squirms, fusses or cries at breast
  • Baby is showing little to no interest in nursing for long periods of time
  • Feeding periods are longer than 45 minutes or feedings are more frequent than every hour for more than just cluster feeding periods at specific times of the day
  • If mom feels like something just isn’t right

Visiting Care Giving Services is also available to help new mothers and families feel supported in parenting. Our nurse professionals can provide help with breastfeeding, sleep support, infant care, and so much more.

Call us at (636) 493-9058 to arrange for care in your home – from just a few hours to overnight care. Learn more about our full range of services – from care for young families to senior care in Chesterfield and throughout the St. Louis metropolitan area.