After birth, the most important process for mother and baby starts with breastfeeding. It is very important to start breastfeeding within the first half hour after birth. Emphasizing the importance of knowing the right breastfeeding positions, planning the frequency of breastfeeding well and having a balanced diet, Uz from Memorial Şişli Hospital Pediatrics Department. Dr. Seda Günhar gave information about the importance of breastfeeding within the scope of ‘August 1-7 World Breastfeeding Week’.
The first vaccine is breast milk
Breastfeeding is the most effective way to establish a strong bond between mother and baby. While protecting mothers from breast cancer, it also significantly reduces the risk of cancer in the future. It is also known that prolactin, i.e. milk hormones, provide birth control from the end of pregnancy to the end of breastfeeding. Breast milk also protects babies against cancer, diabetes, obesity, allergies and intestinal diseases. Moreover, the baby’s first vaccine is the first mouth milk, also called colostrum, which he sucks from his mother. This first milk, which has a yellowish color, contains beneficial biologically active substances that strengthen the baby’s immune system.
Breastfeeding education should be received
Nipple cracking, which occurs as a result of not holding the baby correctly and not grasping the nipple well, the mother’s during breastfeeding It can cause severe pain and cooling off from breastfeeding. For this reason, education about breastfeeding should be taken in the last days of pregnancy.
Even if the birth was by cesarean section, it is necessary to breastfeed within the first half hour. There are studies that show that milk comes earlier when the baby is placed on the mother’s breast as soon as the baby is born in normal births.
Babies should be breastfed for 20 minutes every 3 hours
Mothers should breastfeed their babies frequently. Especially new mothers who gave birth by cesarean section should breastfeed every 2 hours for the milk to come faster. Physiological feeding period should be every 3 hours after milk performance is established and started to come. This period may change as babies grow, but the determining factor here is the baby. Some babies prefer to suck frequently, while others prefer to suck at long intervals. Ideally, 15-20 minutes of active nutrition every 3 hours. In this way, the baby will have a healthier sleep, defecation and feeding pattern. Babies who sleep 4-5 hours a night should not be interrupted and if they are sleeping, they should be allowed to sleep for 5 hours.
Milk formation in breasts is related to breastfeeding interval and duration. A baby who is fed for 20 minutes in 3 hours empties the breast and within 3 hours the breast is filled with milk again. Mothers who start their business life should express milk every 3 hours. As the months progress, it may be every 4 hours. Milking is important for the continuation of the physiological order.
Healthy nutrition increases milk
The mother should be fed with 3 main meals and 3 snacks during the breastfeeding process. When snacks or main meals are skipped, metabolism slows down and milk production decreases. Industrial products and sugary foods should not be consumed too much. Protein, vegetable, fruit, grain-based diet should be adopted. Eggs, cheese, yoghurt, meat, fish, village chickens, all foods that provide physiological nutrition play an important role in the production of milk. Cereals such as bulgur, wheat and oats should also be included in the diet. Raw nuts such as walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts and dried fruits can be consumed as a snack. It should not be forgotten that the increase in milk is not by eating a lot, but by eating a healthy and regular diet.
Exclusive breast milk for the first 6 months
Considering the baby’s weight gain and health status, the baby should be fed only with breast milk for the first 6 months, unless the doctor says otherwise. Complementary nutrition exercises start from the 6th month. You can create the transition to additional food and the baby’s nutrition program together with your doctor. The baby should continue to be fed with breast milk until the age of 2.
How to prevent mastitis
Mastitis is one of the most common health problems experienced by breastfeeding mothers. This condition is usually caused by inflammation in the nipple crack. As a precaution, the correct breastfeeding position should be known and applied. It is very important to avoid very oily creams as much as possible and to apply breast milk to the nipples while taking care of the breast. Continuous closure of the nipple with pads in an airtight manner delays wound healing. Using chest shields for this will provide a much shorter recovery time. Do not take a shower with extremely hot water and massage the breast in the shower as much as possible.
The nipple should not be cleaned too often. In particular, cleaning with carbonated water or other disinfectants should be avoided. It will be sufficient to clean only once a day with normal shower and body soap.
If milk is insufficient, formula can be given
A mother should never lose hope in increasing breast milk. If the mother’s milk is not enough for the baby’s general condition to be good, formula should be given after breastfeeding. It is very important to hold the breast every 3 hours. It is necessary to keep the baby at the breast for 15-20 minutes and then to supplement with formula when it is not enough. Bottle use should be avoided in the first week after birth. The baby who takes the bottle may have difficulty taking the breast.