Wednesday, August 6, 2008
World Breastfeeding Awareness Month 2008 + some helpful breastfeeding tips and info
World Breastfeeding Week 2008
Going for the Gold
In conjunction with the Olympics in August 2008, WBW 2008 calls for greater support for mothers in achieving the gold standard of infant feeding: breastfeeding exclusively for six months, and providing appropriate complementary foods with continued breastfeeding for up to two years or beyond. La Leche League International, a founding member and Core Partner of the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA), is celebrating World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) through its La Leche League (LLL) Leaders and LLL Groups around the world. LLLI has a current presence in 68 countries.
i am an advocate for breastfeeding and support it on many levels. as soon as i can upload a video again (had some trouble w/the uploads recently) i will share a little video that i made showing you mothers around the world, my ongoing support. please self educate as much as possible. knowledge is power and builds confidence. in turn you and your baby reap the benefits for many years to come. "breast is best"
breastfeeding art you can purchase, follow the link:
until i can get the video uploaded, i thought i'd share with words and photos just a few simple things from my own experiences....
a great book that i read while i was pregnant with sister bear (my first child) is a fantastic book that gave me great confidence in preparing for something i had never done before. i found it at the goodwill for $1.99, it was the best $2 i ever spent.
title: "new mother's guide to breastfeeding"
author: joan younger meek, md, ms, rd, faap, ibclc, editor in chief with sherill tippins
"american academy of pediatrics - dedicated to the health of all children"
i was told by a doula that when she was getting certified that this is the book that she was given to read. that made me feel good about my choice of reading material.
i believe that there is more support out there than you realize. le leche league and lansinoh are wonderful sources. also give your local hospital or birthing center a call and ask for the lactation specialist, that's what they are there for.
http://www.llli.org/ - le leche league international -you can call them with any questions or uncertainties you may have. nothing is too off the wall for them or any breastfeeding supporter for that matter. it's not a shy community when it comes to helping each other. there are groups formed in most communities, so find yours on their website or give them a call.
http://www.lansinoh.com/ - a worldwide line made for breastfeeding mothers and breastfed babies by a breastfeeding mother. lansinoh products such as breast pumps, baby wipes, breast cream, nursing pads, diaper cream and more can be found at target and walmart or online. you can't miss it, the line is packaged in a soothing lavender color. i have used most of their products including the manual breast pump which is easy to assemble and use and has great reviews. you can always rent a pump from your local hospital or birthing center. you can contact lansinoh 2 ways, by phone or email: 800-292-4794 / firstname.lastname@example.org
i have to share a story with you about my own personal experience and if it reaches and helps one mother, i've done what makes me happiest in sharing information. here's my story:
while pregnant with my son just a few months back, i watched alot of "baby story" and "bringing home the baby" on TLC. what concerns me most was that a great amount of mothers wanted to breastfeed their babies, whether they were a first time mother and new to the whole experience or on their second and third child. i could not believe how all these hospitals were offering the babies supplemented formula so quickly, especially for jaundice. they tell the mothers that they need the formula to help the baby pass the bilirubin. if you have a baby or know someone who has a baby with any amount of jaundice, please read here further for some very helpful information and encouragement to continue to breastfeed: http://www.bflrc.com/newman/breastfeeding/jaundice.htm
breast milk is a natural laxative, it will pass through your baby almost immediately after each feeding. formula can be more binding.
my first child was born with jaundice as well and at that time supplementing was not being pushed. all i did was breastfeed her as usual and put her in front of a sunny window (use filtered light -i put up a shear scarf on the window), wearing only a diaper for 15 mins on and 15 off for about 4-5 hours a day. within a week she was fine. when i was in the hospital earlier this year delivering my son, i was given formula and was suggested to bring it home and continue supplemental feedings. i never used it, knowing instinctively that breastmilk was what would help pass through the bilirubin.
our favorite first photo of a very healthy brother bear!
with my son being born 5 weeks early, the nurses at the hospital were worried about him not being able to suckle as much as he needed. again a mother's instincts kicked in and i knew my baby was getting what he needed. he showed me in early ultrasounds that he could do it because i witnessed him sucking his thumb and then he was born with chapped skin on his hand where he had suckled in the womb. so i knew that he not only knew what to do, but he knew how to do it well. my children's pediatrician confirmed at my son's 1st visit just days after he was born that all he needed was breast milk and that would be the best thing for jaundice. my son had lower levels of bilirubin in his blood which continued to give him jaundice for about 3-4 weeks after birth. was i scared? yes, and a bit concerned, but i knew that he had a wonderful pediatrician that stayed on top of his bilirubin levels with consistent blood work to monitor on a weekly basis. he eventually passed it right out of his system, with continued feedings (breastfeeding only) along with giving him the lovely natural sunlight. that's all you need. now if you have a baby with high levels of bilirubin, there are other measures that may need to be taken, please read below:
Phototherapy (bilirubin lights)
Phototherapy increases the fluid requirements of the baby. If the baby is nursing well, more frequent feeding can usually make up this increased requirement. However, if it is felt that the baby needs more fluids, use a lactation aid to supplement, preferably expressed breast milk, expressed milk with sugar water or sugar water alone rather than formula.
Questions? (416) 813-5757 (option 3) or email@example.com or my book Dr. Jack Newman’s Guide to Breastfeeding (called The Ultimate Breastfeeding Book of Answers in the USA)
another idea for you mothers who want a support system with breastfeeding is to find a pediatrician who encourages and supports breastfeeding. interview them until you find one you feel comfortable with. ask them their views on it, if they seem relaxed about the idea and mention formula or supplementing.. move on to the next one. it's important for you to feel comfortable. remember, you are going to most likely be nursing in their office.
great places to breastfeed when out running errands or just out and about shopping:
-if you're lucky to have one near, a nursing lounge. they are becoming an option in some of your malls. designated for families, it's a lounge fully equipped with nursing and changing stations. it doesn't hurt to request something like this.
-dressing rooms (ask for the family size one) they are great, quiet places to relax and give your baby what he or she needs. you have a place to sit and a mirror to check on baby and it's spacious to lug in your shopping cart, stroller, multiple children or all of the above! you can sit in there for as long as you need to.
-baby section of whichever store you're in (emergency situation; very hungry screaming baby!)
-bathrooms can be a last resort but usually can be loud and startle your baby. they are not usually stocked with a comfy place to sit. but, when baby's hungry NOW! this will do! they usually have a changing station at least.
in our world of fast food..... quality fast food, open 24 hours!
for more clever and tastefully chosen art, please visit "breastfeeding art":
THE WONDERFUL THING ABOUT BREAST MILK IS IT IS FREE OF CHARGE, ALWAYS THE RIGHT TEMPERATURE AND EXACTLY THE RIGHT NUTRIENTS FOR YOUR BABY...... the cleanup is easy, no bottles to wash or carry around with your already full diaper bag. the convenience of it is enough for any mother to consider.
breastfeeding in public can either be a comfortable thing for you to do or you may feel a little awkward at times. we've all been there.... so consider getting yourself a sling. i use this one, it's thee most comfortable one out there with it's multi purposes and multiple ways of wearing it. it's worth every penny:
(this actually is the same one i own and love! -just recently saw one similar to this and half the price at target, located on one of their end caps with the chic-y stuff!)
a sling makes feeding in public a little more discreet and just the closeness of carrying your baby this way makes you enjoy your little bundle even more. you can be hands free for those moments when your little one needs mama OR daddy because he can use the sling too. a sling is good for those dads that shy away or are nervous about holding the new, fragile baby that they think they are going to break. slings are great when you just want to run into the grocery store and don't want to lug your detachable car seat w/baby inside (how much does that weigh?) babies usually fall right to sleep once you get them snug in the sling because they are right where they want to be -nestled in mama. it's like an endless hug for both of you.
surround yourself with support and don't give up! listen to yourself, this is a time to not worry or care what others think. this is about your baby and you.
i read this on another blog and i liked what it said...
"What can you do to support breastfeeding? If you are or ever plan to get pregnant, try to breastfeed your baby. Do it for as long as you feel comfortable. Encourage the women in your life to give breastfeeding a try. Encourage women who can’t nurse to try to pump and feed their child breast milk by bottle. Don’t give dirty looks to the women who breastfeed in public. Don’t speak poorly of women who tried to breastfeed and were unable to."
"dinner" -being italian, i couldn't resist posting this.
each day, for the rest of this month i will post a breastfeeding related post; further tips and benefits. word of mouth is powerful.