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Unfortunately, a lot of advice comes out of time. If the expectant mother heard them while pregnant (or she would take them to heart), she would have far fewer problems with natural feeding. In many situations, preparing your breasts for lactation would save you stress, pain and uncertainty.
Just natural breast preparation for lactation?
In general, nature thought so breasts are prepared for lactation already during pregnancy. Both their size and shape change. However, the most important changes relate to the size and shape of the nipple, which becomes darker, larger, and the nipple is naturally pulled out so that the baby attached to the breast has less work to do and easier sucking.
Additional breast preparation for feeding is crucial in some situations. The effort put into extracting milk from the mother's breast is so large that some obstacles can effectively discourage feeding, and a small child and a young mother. Therefore, in the situations discussed below, one should act to support nature.
Do you always need to prepare your breasts for lactation?
Indications for breast preparation for lactation depend on many factors. Among them, the most important remain: breast structure and individual sensitivity to touch.
There are young mothers who are at the very beginning perfectly cope with feeding and nipple movements during sucking by the baby, not feeling much discomfort. There are also those which, despite the good technique of putting the child to the breast, they complain of pain, often in conjunction with irritation that is visible to the naked eye.
When to prepare breasts for lactation?
- if you have flat or concave warts, try to get them out while still pregnant. Regularity and appropriate technique allows to do a lot in this topic. There is a possibility of pulling the wart with special device, as well as massaging them and improving their appearance manually (Hoffman's exercises). There is also a third solution: the use of so-called corrective pads, which improve the shape of the nipples and facilitate feeding or silicone covers (caps), which allow the baby to catch the wart during lactation. Which method is best to choose? It's best to discuss this with your doctor. It is worth showing breasts during one of your visits to a pregnant gynecologist, which will allow you to assess their structure and preparation for feeding.
- if you have exceptionally delicate, prone to irritation (also when choosing and wearing underwear) warts - some experts recommend wart hardening during pregnancy by massaging and rubbing them with a towel, and then applying vaseline or cosmetic oil. Are these good methods? It depends who you ask for your opinion. Some mothers and midwives claim to be effective, although the official view is that this procedure is not necessary and may even be harmful. And what do you think about it?
What can every mother do?
Regardless of the type of warts and individual sensitivity, each mother before and within a few weeks after giving birth can and should take care of:
- proper care - good use on the skin of the breast during pregnancy and lactation, gentle care products that primarily moisturize it, increase flexibility and protect against stretch marks and other unsightly changes. It is worth paying attention to whether the preparations used are free of dyes, preservatives and fragrances that may be responsible for an allergic reaction and irritation in young children.
- the right bra - It doesn't have to be expensive lingerie, although it's usually easier to find a good bra in stores considered more exclusive. It is important that it performs certain functions. First of all, a bra should be flexible and easily adapt to the body. It can't be too loose or too tight. It is very important that the bra does not compress the skin of the breast or the nipple (too tight bra can cause stagnation of food and inflammation of the mammary gland). When choosing a bra, it's also worth considering the place for breast pads. It is important that the bra, and especially its cup, can be easily fastened and detached with one hand. You can quickly appreciate this advantage when you need to quickly feed a hungry baby.
- knowledge regarding attachment of the baby to the breast and position during feeding. These are two key aspects that allow you to feed your baby in a comfortable way and avoid irritation and their consequences.