Episode Freebie: The Pre-Baby Breastfeeding Checklist
Today is all about breastfeeding while pregnant. If you’re breastfeeding or pumping and you get pregnant – you’re probably wondering what you should do. You may wonder if you can handle growing a baby, nursing a baby, and taking care of your pregnant self all at the same time. Let’s explore what your options are and what to expect along the way.
Let’s dive in!
The first question we need to get out of the way is can you breastfeed while pregnant?
Yes, depending on your situation.
It’s generally considered safe if the pregnancy is progressing normally, you have no complications, and you’re healthy. If that’s the case then it’s you and your baby’s decision if you’d like to continue breastfeeding. However, there are some circumstances where it may be advised to wean:
Uterine pain or bleeding
Pregnancy-related health issues
If you have a high-risk pregnancy
History of pre-term birth
If you are carrying twins, triplets, or more
You notice strong contracts when you breastfeed
If you have been advised to avoid sex while pregnant
Weight loss during pregnancy
Before you make the decision to breastfeed while pregnant, definitely get the okay from your healthcare provider. It’s a good idea to keep an open dialogue with them to make sure all 3 involved, you, your child, and the baby in your belly, are staying healthy. And if you’re uncomfortable with any recommendation, you can get a 2nd opinion from a breastfeding-friendly healthcare provider.
Expect a reaction from your loved ones. May feel pressure to wean from friends and family. And so it’s important to separate how you feel and what you’d like to do from what others think, feel and believe.
Expect some bodily changes.The changes that happen in your body during pregnancy can affect breastfeeding in a few ways.
Some increased breast tenderness or nipple soreness which may make breastfeeding feel different.
Your milk may start to change by mid-pregnancy (usually by about the 4th or 5th month in) it could change to a lower-volume, different tasting type of milk with colostrum in it.
If baby is under a yea,r because milk needs to make up a majority of their nutrition, you’ll need to keep track of baby’s weight gain and monitor their intake closely, just in case a lower milk supply becomes an issue. Keep an open dialogue with their pediatrician.
Your toddler can have more foods and drinks added to their diet to compensate.
Expect to Take good care of yourself!
You’re growing a baby and feeding a baby so You should be taking good care of yourself. “The best way to ensure that you stay healthy is to get rest, stay hydrated and eat nutrient-dense food each day.
Your body knows what it needs and since you’re pregnant And breastfeeding your body will alert you that you’ll need to eat and drink a little bit more. All that’s needed is to listen to your body and eat when you’re hungry and drink when you’re thirsty and don’t deprive yourself.
Some children self-wean in response to the changes in milk, while others don’t seem to care or nurse more often to.
-Human milk provides important nutritional and immunity boosts for as long as a child nurse
-Sitting or lying down to breastfeed throughout the day can help you get the extra rest you crave during pregnancy
-Helpful to your toddler’s adjustment to a new baby and help them bond better with the newborn
If you do decide to wean it’s always best to proceed gradually.
-don’t offer, don’t refuse works for a lot of mothers
-distraction when they want to nurse
-offer a snack instead
-avoid sitting in a spot where you normally breastfeed
-give extra attention and hugs
May not be your decision at all. Many children end up weaning themselves during pregnancy due to the changes in your milk.
And some wean, and then even resume breastfeeding after the baby is born!
If you’re at all unsure what to do? My suggestion is to Take it one day at a time. It’s impossible to say how you’ll feel a week or a month from now so it’s important to keep an open mind, stay flexible, and avoid any assumptions on how breastfeeding will go during pregnancy.