Breastfeeding Education and Support for New mothers
Breastfeeding is one of the most beneficial things a mother can do for her baby. There are many physical and emotional benefits for both baby and mom. Some of those benefits may include less physician office visits, it can reduce risks of many illnesses and breastmilk is readily available. It also provides special bonding time for you and your baby. But sometimes there are challenges for both baby and mom. We offer the Breastfeeding Education Center as a resource to support new mothers.
Benefits of Breastfeeding
There are many physical and emotional benefits of breastfeeding for both mom and baby:
- Breastmilk is always ready and free.
- Breastfed babies have fewer visits to the doctor or hospital with less severe ear, breathing and stomach infections.
- The hormone oxytocin, which is released during nursing, promotes feelings of love and closeness.
- Breastfeeding can help mom lose pregnancy weight.
- Breastfeeding can reduce the risk of premenopausal breast and ovarian cancer in women who breastfeed longer than a year.
- Studies show that breastfeeding also reduces the risk of mom developing diabetes, heart disease and brittle bones later in life.
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Successful breastfeeding starts with making sure you maintain uninterrupted skin-to-skin contact with your baby. Immediate skin-to-skin contact will:
- Keep your baby warm
- Help control baby’s breathing, blood pressure, heart rate and blood sugar
- Keep mom and baby calm
- Help get breastfeeding off to a good start
- Support bonding with your baby
Parents and babies need as much time together as possible in the early days so they can all adjust to life outside the womb. Pediatricians recommend that mothers and babies sleep in the same room — near each other but not in the same bed.
What are the benefits of rooming together on a 24-hour basis?
- You make more milk faster
- Babies cry less, and parents and babies get more rest
- You can feed your baby on demand
- You learn how to care for your baby
- Your baby recognizes you
- You recognize baby’s feeding cues and need to be snuggled
- Babies gain more weight, quicker
Many healthy babies are ready to breastfeed within the first hour of life, regardless of delivery method. During the first few days of life, your baby should feed at least 8–12 times in order to establish a milk supply. These feedings don’t need to be evenly spaced—just keep track of how many times baby has fed within a 24-hour period.
Making breastmilk is a demand-and-supply process. If you cannot feed as frequently as you need to in the early days, hand expression and a breast pump will help build and maintain your milk supply. Ask your nurse for more information or call the Breastfeeding Education Center at (321) 843-2229.
Feed your baby whenever your baby shows signs of hunger. This helps:
- Baby be settled and content
- Prevent breastfeeding complications
- Establish a good milk supply
- Provide baby the perfect amount to eat
Learning your baby’s hunger cues will help you know when he/she is ready to feed. Here are some movements your baby may make to indicate hunger:
- Reaching for the breast while skin-to-skin and chest-to-chest
- Bringing hand to mouth
- Squirming and wiggling
- Crying is a late sign that your baby is very hungry. When your baby cries, place baby skin-to-skin to calm him/her. You can also try soothing your baby by rocking him/her before offering the breast.
- No to minimal discomfort while baby is on breast
- Baby breastfeeds with a steady sucking and swallowing
- Your breasts soften during a feed
- Baby is content after feeding
- Baby has adequate pees and poops that change from dark greenish black to seedy yellow
As a 2023 IBCLC Care Award recipient, our caring and skilled nurses and certified lactation consultants help expectant parents prepare for breastfeeding and provide one-on-one assistance to new mothers. Our caring and skilled nurses and certified lactation consultants help expectant parents prepare for breastfeeding and provide one-on-one assistance to new mothers. As mother and baby learn together, it is common to have questions, concerns and challenges. That's where we can help. Our experienced staff can provide advice and support to ensure a successful experience.
When to ask for help:
- Your baby eats less than eight times in 24 hours (after the third day).
- Your baby is too sleepy to wake for feeds (after day two).
- Feeding is painful.
- Baby never seems satisfied.
- Feedings last longer than one hour.
- Your baby is not gaining weight after day five.
- Baby has trouble attaching and staying latched.
The Breastfeeding Education Center is located at Orlando Health Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies. Services include private lactation consultations (insurance accepted). Consultations are by appointment only. To schedule an appointment, please call (321) 843-2229.
New Mother Classes
Several virtual classes are also available to new mothers, including:
For more information on these classes and others, and to register, view our Virtual Childbirth and Parenting Classes here.
Breast Pump Rental
If you are interested in renting a breast pump, call Lori’s Gifts at (321) 843-1222. Lori’s Gifts is located on the first floor of Orlando Health Winnie Palmer.