Bloom Chennai > World Of Wellness > Pregnancy > Postpartum Care
Breast milk is nature’s perfect food for your baby and helps her grow and develop during her first years of life. It is also important to know that breastfeeding benefits not only your baby, but you as well. Here are some advantages of breastfeeding:Benefits to baby
Breastfeeding provides a time for you and your baby to relax together as she feeds. Establish a routine that’s comfortable to you.
Here are some items to have on hand:
As you and your baby get comfortable in your breastfeeding relationship, you may need advice from time to time. Make sure to consult your healthcare professional.How to hold your baby while nursing
As your baby’s appetite increases during growing spurts, your milk volume also increases. Typical growth spurts occur at 10 to 14 days, 6 weeks, 3 months, and 6 months.Latching on
The key to successful breastfeeding starts with your baby being able to properly latch on to your breast. Follow these steps to help ensure that your baby latches on correctly and is provided with adequate breast milk:
From time to time, your baby may swallow small amounts of air during feeding, and this may cause an uncomfortable bubble in her tummy. To relieve the baby’s discomfort, place her over your shoulder and gently pat or rub her on the back to release the accumulated air. Try experimenting with different positions such as sitting up or across your lap.Common breastfeeding issues
Breastfeeding is the most natural way for you to give your baby the best nutrition during her first years of life, Although nature's way is the very best you may experience one or more of the following situations that sometimes occur with breastfeeding, Here are some helpful tips on what to do:Leaking Milk
Milk leaking from your breast is a normal physical reaction for breastfeeding moms right before nursing or when your baby cries,
Vigorous sucking or improper latching on may cause sore or cracked nipples,
Tingling in your breasts may occur as your body adjusts to breastfeeding, If you experience tingling only when your baby is nursing, it's a normal sign of your body releasing milk.
To aid the process of let down for the release of milk in your breast:
If your baby is not properly latched on to your breast during breastfeeding
A small hard lump may form in your breast. It may disappear on its own after a few days
Painful, hard, and swollen breasts result from the accumulation of milk as your breasts adjust to your baby’s needs.
Breastfeeding is the best way to ensure a healthy start for both you and your baby. Medical authorities encourage doctors and hospitals to assist new moms in the breastfeeding experience as soon after birth as possible. Here’s an idea of what to expect:Colostrum
Yellowish, translucent fluid your breasts secrete during the first few days of breastfeeding
Marks the change from colostrum to regular breast milk in about three days from the onset of breastfeeding
Nature’s most perfect, nutritionally balanced food for your baby’s healthy, natural growth and development
Breast milk actually changes to keep up with the baby even within the same feeding! As the baby begins a feeding, she gets the high-protein milk necessary for growth. The milk that follows has more of the fat she needs for energy and weight gainImportant Advice For Mothers
Breastfeeding provides the best nutrition and protection from illness for your baby. For most infants, breast milk is all that is needed for the first 6 months. Many mothers continue to breastfeed after 6 months and then give other foods as well. For advice on breastfeeding, consult your doctor or any health professional, or a friend or relative who has successfully breastfed. Frequent feeding is the best way to establish and maintain a good milk supply. A well balanced diet, both during pregnancy and after delivery, also helps sustain an adequate supply of breastmilk.Remember: breast milk is the best and most economical food for your baby.
The use of foods which are not intended for young babies can be harmful. Unnecessary introduction of partial bottle-feeding or other foods and drinks, will have a negative effect on breastfeeding. Therefore always consult a health professional before introducing anything other than breastmilk.Using a breast milk substitute
If a doctor or other health professional recommends an infant milk substitutes in addition to breastfeeding or ots replacement during the first 6 months, keep your family circumstances and cost in mind before deciding whether to use infant formula. You will need more than one can (475g) per week if your baby is only bottle-fed. Unboilded water, unboiled bottles or incorrect dilution can make your baby ill. Improper use of infant milk substitute and feeding bottles may have adverse implications on the health of the baby. Always follow instructions exactly. You should be aware of the difficulties in reverting to breast-feeding of infants after a period of feeding by infant milk substitute.
Important Notice: Mother’s milk is best for your baby. Infant food should be introduced only after 6 upto 24 months of age.
You may need more time than you think to heal from childbirth. This is especially true if you had a caesarean delivery. However, you can begin exercises to tone your pelvic floor and abdominal muscles as soon as you feel ready.
If you had an episiotomy (a cut in the perineum to widen the opening during delivery) or tore your perineum during birth, pelvic floor exercises can help to speed your recovery. See your doctor, midwife or physiotherapist for more information.Gentle tummy exercise
Pregnancy splits your abdominal muscles down the middle. It is important to make sure your muscles have healed before you do any vigorous abdominal exercises, such as abdominal crunches.
In the meantime, you can tone your tummy by performing an exercise that strengthens the deepest muscle layer (transversus abdominus). You can perform this exercise lying down, sitting, standing, or on your hands and knees.
Be guided by your doctor, midwife, physiotherapist or exercise physiologist, but general guidelines include:
Once the gap in your abdominal muscles has closed, you can progress to more demanding exercises. General guidelines include:
The lower abdominal muscles are located below your belly button. To work these muscles gently, guidelines include:
The pelvic floor muscles are tightly slung between the tailbone (coccyx) and the pubic bone, and support the bowel, bladder, uterus (womb) and vagina. Childbirth can weaken these muscles and cause problems, such as incontinence, later in life.
To exercise them, you must first direct your attention to these muscles. To help you identify these muscles, they are the ones that you tighten to stop urinating (weeing). These exercises can be performed lying down, sitting or standing.
Try to relax your abdominal muscles. Don’t bear down or hold your breath. Gradually squeeze and increase the tension until you have contracted the muscles as hard as you can. Release gently and slowly. Then perform the exercises, which include:
Keep in mind that your ligaments and joints will be loose for at least three months following the birth, so avoid any high-impact exercises or sports that require rapid direction changes. Vigorous stretching should be avoided too. Recommended postnatal exercise includes:
See your doctor for further recommendations and cautions.General suggestions for aerobic exercise
Be guided by your doctor or midwife, but general suggestions include:
Remember that it may take you months to return to your pre-pregnancy shape and weight, so don’t be discouraged by slow progress.Warning signs to slow down
Don’t overexert yourself. Your body gives out warning signs if you are exercising too hard, and these signs may include:
See your doctor or midwife for further information and advice.
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