If you’re a breastfeeding mom, it’s easy to worry about whether your baby is getting enough nutrition or if whatever you’re doing to feed them is actually working. But you could be doing a much better job than you thought! So, how do you know if you’ve got this breastfeeding thing down? Read on to find out!
Breastfeeding can be tough, especially because it brings about a whole new lifestyle to adjust to. But, because you know your mandated rights as a breastfeeding Filipino mom, you’re off to a great start making life after giving birth better and so much easier for both you and your baby.
Duck lips are good for more than just a cute photo. Just take a look at your nursing baby! Their lips are pointing outwards and their cheeks are full with a mouthful of your nipple. So you know your newborn has got a good hold and won’t be sliding off. Of course, there was some discomfort at first. But nothing that lasted more than 30 seconds or that caused any pain or bruising. Your baby is definitely enjoying a yummy meal, as they’ve got a deep latch with their tongue over their gums and under your nipple.
Your little one sure can keep a beat, as they make roughly one suck per second and a small “k” or “ca” sound when they swallow. This quick suckling style followed by soft and satisfied gulps in between can only mean your baby is really liking their meal!
Without the words to say just how well breastfeeding is going for them, your baby lets you know through different body movements. When their eyes and nose are visible and their chin is pressed up against your breast, they’re in a good position. When their ears twitch lightly and their jaw moves as they suckle you, your newborn is telling you to keep it up! When your baby’s fingers are outstretched or their hands are closed tight, they’re really digging into this meal! And when their hands relax, they’ve got a good latch and are settled in.
If your baby is feeding eight to 12 times a day for at least ten minutes each time, there’s no need to worry. You’ve probably picked up on most of their signs of hunger, like lip smacking, squirming, and rooting, and learned to use your baby’s behavior to get on a breastfeeding schedule that works for you both. When they’re nursing as long and as often as possible, your newborn is only getting stronger and maximizing all the good your breast milk can offer.
While it’s normal for babies to drop a few pounds, they should be steadily reaching their birth weight within ten to 14 days or their first two weeks. This means you’re giving your baby enough milk by providing both your breasts during a feeding. Tracking your baby’s weight gain is no problem with the help of your pediatrician, who should keep you up to date on weight checks and anything that may be preventing your baby from gaining enough weight (should that be the case), like food allergies or incorrect latching.
You’ve got more and more nappy changing to do everyday, until your baby starts pooping after each feeding. With up to six wet diapers a day and your newborn’s stool going from the usual dark meconium in their first two to three days to the kind of loose yellow poop breastfed babies produce, your baby is definitely getting the right amount of nutrition from you.
Your baby is really digging in, so you notice that your breasts are feeling less and less full. As the weeks go by with you continuing to breastfeed, your breasts feel much softer though you still have plenty of milk to give. Good thing your newborn is keeping a steady feeding rhythm and putting a lot of practice to taking in all this nutrition!
As a busy mom always on-the-go, taking the time to pump and store your breast milk for when you have to be away from your baby is all a part of your tight schedule. No way are you going to let your valuable milk go to waste because of careless storage. That’s why you know the dos and don’ts when properly handling your breast milk.
After that yummy, no-fuss meal, your baby is full, satisfied, and ready for a nap. Your cheery tot is relaxed and so are you! You believed in yourself right from the get-go and now, you’re feeling much lighter and at ease. Give yourself a pat on the back! Great job, mom!
It’s also important to remember that anytime something just doesn’t feel right or if you’re unsure about whether you’re doing the right thing, it’s always okay to get help from experts like pediatricians or lactation consultants. Although getting the hang of breastfeeding can take time, understanding signs like those listed above and asking for help when you need it are great ways to get on the right track!
- “10 Signs of Successful Breastfeeding.” Ministry of Health. 2019.
- Crouch, Michelle. “39 Breastfeeding Secrets Every New Mother Should Know.” Parents. May 9, 2019.
- Daez, Chinny. “6 Rights Every Breastfeeding Mom Should Be Aware Of.” Baby and Breakfast. August 22, 2017.
- Daez, Chinny. “You Need to Know These Do’s and Don’ts for Handling and Storing Breast Milk.” Baby and Breakfast. April 10, 2019.
- Gleeson, Louise. “12 Signs That Breastfeeding Is Going Well.” Today’s Parent. May 21, 2019.
- HealthyFamilies BC. “Signs of a Good Feed.” Signs of a Good Feed | Healthy Families BC. August 14, 2013.
- “How Often To Breastfeed.” HealthyChildren.org. November 21, 2015.
- Stewart, Rebecca Felsenthal. “Is Your Baby Gaining Enough Weight?” Parents. January 21, 2013.