Here it is folks! All the things that I used to find success exclusively feeding with breast milk. With these products, recipes and a LOT of determination, my four month old baby and I are still going strong, and I hope this knowledge helps make the job easier for you too!
Favourite Breastfeeding Tools and What They’re for:
Medela Harmony Manual Breast Hand Pump
What does it do? This is a breast pump you can use to manually express milk. your hand may tire but it’s super portable, very discrete and mostly inaudible which you will grow to appreciate. I used this once when I was around 37 weeks pregnant. I had a bit of fun pumping but then some colostrum came out and I didn’t know what to do with it. Turns out you can freeze it. I tried to pump to induce labour when I was 40 weeks… (the pumping did not induce labour). After I had my baby I used used it to “empty” my boob after my baby ate in the hopes that I would produce more milk due to the “emptying.” I would combine that milk with my Haakaa riches and feed it to my baby. I did not enjoy pumping while feeding and couldn’t get at the proper angle as the milk would sploosh back towards me instead of down into the bottle. This is why the Haakaa became necessary. My hand pump also came in handy during those times where you feel like there couldn’t possibly be any more milk. I’d pop it on to see which breast the milk would most easily still come out of and choose that one to offer to my baby during those sleep regression periods where they seem to never want to stop eating.
What does it do? Shields your nipple to offer relief and or a better latch. I recommend having one of these on hand in your hospital bag. I have “flat nipples” so it was hard for them to get into proper formation for my baby to properly latch on. He also had a tongue tie so this helped him suck. SWANKMOMHACK: Tuck your shield into your bra while your baby isn’t feeding. That way it’s at the ready when your baby does want to nurse again. Do give it a rinse and clean after every feed though to keep germs at bay.
These nipples will come along with some of your Medela Purchases and retail for >$14 per nipple. It sounds crazy but the technology is really great and I never had an issue with my boy taking a bottle. They were super easy for him to use, maybe a little too easy? If you’re worried about your baby preferring a bottle I recommend getting some Gerber #1 nipples to start but if you’re content with solo pumping these work great.
Super simple to use and the new ones are designed to hook on to your pumps. Super sturdy and great quality. You almost feel bad for just using them one time.
A great scent-free nipple cream to get you through the days! I also used a different cream when my samples of this ran out and it did NOT do as good of a job. I won’t use any other brand now because this one did me right. Apply before pumping and after nursing and you won’t regret it!
For when you can’t bare to have your nipples even touch fabric! You’ll wear these after nursing. Wipe some breastmilk on your nipples and let them air dry. There are two different pieces that attach to the shell. One just allows for a bit of space, and another will help form your nipple (painfree) into a point if you are a flat nipple friend like myself.
Great for on the go! Comes will a little ice pack you can slip into the freezer. Lots of space and super sleek design.
This Glider chair look soo good in my nursery. My boy loves trying to grab on to the little buttons, I think I saw a version that doesn’t have the buttons if you don’t want a distracted baby. Great value, super comfy and easy to come up from the reclined position without any hands. Although, if you’re shorter than 5′ 5″ you might have trouble reaching the ground. You’ll need a stool to push off of to rock. Also make sure you have a night stand or table near by to set all your accessories and water glass for easy access.
Recipe Links: Guess what! You’re still eating for two…
Please note: Eating cookies isn’t going directly increase your milk supply but it sure does help keep you energized in order to do so. Staying hydrated and having lots of healthy nutrient rich foods at-the-ready will do wonders for your own mind and body while providing good nutrients to your growing baby too!
New Mama Glo Bars Lactation-Friendly & Nut-Free
Booby Bites Energy Snack
Reading & Resources:
While you and your baby are learning how to breastfeed, I can’t stress enough how important it is to be in touch with medical professionals and meet with them on a regular basis. The nurses and doctors at the Hospital will help you, your local Health Unit has nurses and contacts available and I was lucky enough to have a free clinic at my doctor’s office right when I needed the most help. I don’t mean to make it sound like breastfeeding is impossible and that you need medical intervention but I found it so helpful to find out my baby’s weight, find out what pain was normal and what was definitely not, and get all those extra tips from multiple sources on how to get a latch and master all those different holds. If you don’t live in the Greater Victoria Area, you may not have all of these medical pros available to you but you should find your local La Leche League and they’ll connect you with even more resources and local pros that can help you throughout your journey.
When you first have your newborn, all of the sudden even the simplest things like knowing what time it was and when the last time you fed your baby is a difficult task. This app came to my rescue and I loved the tracking charts that helped me see how my baby was growing. I continued to stay motivated once those little dots went back into the upward direction. The app also came in handy when the doctor asked how many pees and poops the baby was having throughout the day and how often I was feeding through the night.
How to Stimulate a Let Down Reflex by Rina
This is an article about having a Let Down in order to pump but it still came in super handy when my milk first came in and I really couldn’t figure out how to have a let down.