Starting to Breastfeed

How long and often should you breastfeed? How does the production of milk change after birth? What is the difference between colostrum and the proper milk? How to latch? We ask ourselves these questions at the beginning of feeding. Here you will find the answers.

Data publikacji: 23-03-2018 Data modyfikacji: 01-08-2019

In the beginning many mums are concerned whether the baby latches properly, whether the breasts produce enough milk, why are the breasts hard and full when the baby suckles a lot. Many doubts can be explained by the nature of lactation course:

Milk production during pregnancy

Lactation begins as early as in 16 week of gestation. Increased level of prolactin triggers the production of colostrum. However, this is only a tiny amount, as milk production is inhibited by hormones called gestagens. Their level rapidly decreases during labor, after placental expulsion. Therefore you can start breastfeeding just from the moment of birth. This way your body will get an additional signal to intensify milk production.

Colostrum - yellow, thick liquid full of nutrients

For about 1-2 days after birth, the breasts give off only drops of yellow, thick liquid, instead of normal milk. This is colostrum, the first milk containing a lot of concentrated nutrients (vitamins, minerals, and primarily proteins). It meets all the initial nutritional needs of a baby. Just a few milliliters per one feeding is enough for a child to receive proper amount of nutrients. Small amount of fluid protects the child's kidneys from excessive load. Colostrum contains less fat and sugar, and thus it is easy to digest and high protein content provides protection against infection, as it mostly contains immune proteins.

High milk supply, i.e. the beginning of mature milk production

Increased milk production begins between 3 and 5 day from the start of breastfeeding. Breasts become heavy and full between feedings, and if they are insufficiently emptied they may become hard, and swollen. Milk is gradually changing its composition, it contains more fats and carbohydrates and less protein than colostrum. In this period it is essential to latch the baby as often as possible. Correct latching enables sufficient breast emptying, prevents milk stasis and breast inflammation.

Latching the baby properly

Successful breastfeeding depends on learning how to latch. This way the baby will suckle milk effectively, and breastfeeding will be a pleasure for both of you. Here are some of tips on proper latching:

  1. Sit comfortably and place the child so that his face is directed towards your breast. Do not lean over the baby - do not bring the breast to the baby, but the baby to the breast.

  2. Tickle the baby's cheek or lower lip with the nipple to stimulate the rooting reflex.

  3. When the child opens his mouth wide, use you hand holding the little one's neck to bring his lips to your breast. The baby's lips should cover the nipple and a large part of the areola. The lips should be curled out and the chin and tongue tip should touch the breast during feeding.

  4. You can help the baby to latch on the breast by holding it with your thumb over and the other fingers under the areola. 

  5. Correct suckling should be accompanied not be smacking sounds, but by swallowing that resembles the "k" sound.

Similar articles
en_GB Read more

Sore, inverted or flat nipples

The initial failure of breastfeeding may be associated with sore, inverted or flat nipples. Explore solutions to help yourself overcome these problems.

en_GB Read more

Breast Fullness And Milk Stasis, Mastitis

Did you notice that the breasts grew heavy, swollen, feel discomfort. Relax, read, what to do in the case of breast fullness and milk stasis. It is very important in order not to cause mastitis.

en_GB Read more

Preparation For Breasteeding

To achieve successful beginnings of breastfeeding, you will need self-confidence, patience, support from the loved ones and getting acquainted with a handful of tips that will allay fears and doubts.

en_GB Read more

Breastfeeding Is Worth It!

Breastfeeding is a wonderful gift that nature gave to women. A gift both for the child and for mothers themselves. Explore the benefits of breastfeeding.

en_GB Read more

Low Milk Supply

Many mums worry whether their breasts produce enough milk. The doubts usually occur when a child often cries, demands breast more frequently than usual, breasts become soft and you do not need breast pads anymore. However, ...

en_GB Read more

Breastfeed For Health!

A popular opinion says that breastfeeding is a great sacrifice on a woman's part for a baby's good. The truth is this way of feeding is advantageous not only to the baby but also to the breastfeeding mum.

en_GB Read more

Breastfeeding After C-section

Can I breastfeed after a C-section? Will I have milk? Will my baby know how to suck?" These questions often trouble future mothers with an elective C-section. We would like to convince you that a C-section is not an obstacle ...

en_GB Read more

Basic Breastfeeding Mistakes

You are expecting a baby and want to breastfeed, or maybe you have already started this exceptional adventure, but your head is full of questions and doubts, as in many cases it is not an easy and problem-free task. We will ...

en_GB Read more

First Latching On

Are you pregnant and intend to breastfeed? Or maybe you have already given birth and are looking for information here because of problems with breastfeeding your baby? Sometimes, something that seems natural is not easy, ...

en_GB Read more

Manual or Electric Breast Pump - Which One Should you Buy?

Before giving birth to their babies many mothers wonder whether to buy a breast pump, and if so, which model to choose. Is it worth investing in a more expensive electric breast pump, or opt for a cheaper, hand-operated model? ...

en_GB Read more

How to Get Back to Breastfeeding - Relactation

There are situations where a mum cannot feed naturally and needs to wean her baby, and lactation diminishes. Does she have a chance to get back to breastfeeding? We believe and convince her that often she has that chance. ...

Related products