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It may sound strange, but something that I am most looking forward to once my son gets here is to breastfeed him. Breastfeeding is something that I have been helping so many mothers with as a postpartum doula–getting a good latch, trying different positions, how to increase their milk supply–and now I get to experience this incredible bond with my son. I know that breastfeeding can be really challenging for some women and very easy and natural for others. I don’t know how it will be for us (obviously) since it will be new to us both, but I do want to make sure that I am doing everything that I can now to prepare for a successful start. When I’m helping a new mom with breastfeeding tips, I’m showing her all the different products and resources that will make things easier. Today I’m sharing the 14 products and resources that I think every expecting mom should have as they are planning to breastfeed their baby.
1. Comfortable Place to Sit
The very first thing that you need when you are breastfeeding is a comfortable place to sit. Getting comfortable and in a good position is everything. For experienced breastfeeding moms, you can breastfeed almost anywhere, but for new moms, feeling anxious, uncomfortable or being in an awkward position can really affect your let down (which is important) as well as getting a good latch. Find somewhere where you will have good back support and it’s even better if you are able to put your feet up!
2. Nursing Clothes & Nursing Bras
Breastfeeding will not always happen in the comfort of your own home. We all know that. You may need to feed your baby while at the pediatrician’s office, at a friend or family member’s house, or even during a trip to Target. No matter where you are, when it comes to breastfeeding you have to have easy access to “the girls.” Make sure you have a few nursing bras, nursing tanks and nursing-friendly clothing options that will keep you comfortable. It will help make breastfeeding easy whether you are on the go or at home. A company that I know, love, and trust is Belabumbum. They have great options for the expecting, new and breastfeeding moms. Here are some of their pieces that I’m definitely going to be wearing once our baby boy gets here.
3. Nipple Balm
There’s a lot of sucking and licking when it comes to breastfeeding. On your baby’s part, that is. 😉 With all of that sucking and licking, it can really dry out your nipples and cause them to get chapped or even crack and bleed. Ouch! No fun! That is why having some good nipple balm is something that every breastfeeding mama needs in her baby’s nursery and in her diaper bag. I have Earth Mama’s Natural Nipple Butter. I know that it’s safe for me and my baby–lanolin free!! It’s also the first Non-GMO Project Verified Nipple Cream! It will help me avoid experiencing nipple irritation, it will moisturize my nipples, and not cause any harm to baby.
4. Nursing Pads
Breastfeeding can get a little messy. Leakage can happen. We don’t want to stain our pretty nursing bras or start leaking through our shirts. That’d be embarrassing! This is why having some disposable nursing pads or reusable organic nursing pads are a must-have. I won’t trust my boobs with any other brand than Bamboobies. Even their disposable pads are made of sustainable bamboo and eco-friendly. Their nursing pads are my go-to!
5. Nursing Pillow
As I said before, good posture and comfort are super important when it comes to having a good let down and getting a good latch. Holding a baby all the time can put a lot of strain on your shoulders and your back. This is why a breastfeeding pillow can help. It will position baby perfectly and allow your body to be at ease.
6. Burpy Bib
Spit up happens. Even when breastfeeding. It’s a good idea to have something on hand that will keep you and baby clean if baby just so happens to have a little spit up. These Burpy Bibs from aden + anais are one of my favorites since they can be used as a burp cloth and a bib. They are also thicker and more absorbent than most burp cloths and bibs. Definitely a must-have!
7. Breast Pump
It’s unrealistic to think that you will always be around baby. Maybe you have to go back to work, maybe you want your partner to help with a feeding, maybe you are going to go on a date night with your husband and need a babysitter, or maybe you just need a few hours to yourself to get your hair done, nails done or go to the gym. This is why you need to have a breast pump if you are wanting to avoid supplementing. Getting a breast pump is easier now more than ever since insurance can cover that expense. Read here to learn how to get a breast pump with your insurance.
8. Milk Saver
Some women don’t realize that when you are breastfeeding on one breast, your other breast is also leaking at the same time. That milk is liquid gold so we want to save every drop! That is why I love and recommend the Milker Saver from Milkies. It’s great because you can save and use that milk from the other breast for later.
9. Breastmilk Storage Bags
When you’re pumping (or catching) your milk, you will also need breastmilk storage bags to be able to save, preserve and store your precious milk. I love that Milkies also offers some great storage bags.
10. Lactation Tea and Lactation Cookies
Some breastfeeding mamas are able to make tons of breastmilk. Others aren’t as lucky. If you are nervous about not making enough milk or are already having that very problem, drinking organic lactation tea and eating lactation cookies are great options. Here are some other tips that can help as well.
11. Breastfeeding App
Your baby’s pediatrician will want to know how much or how often your baby is eating as well as how many wet and dirty diapers your baby is having per day. Having a good breastfeeding app can help keep track of all of that. In the middle of the night, you might not remember which breast baby was last on. And in the morning you may not remember how long baby was on the breast. An app can take the uncertainty out of breastfeeding and keep you on track with your breastfeeding goals.
12. Booby Tubes
Sometimes breastfeeding can hurt. 🙁 Women can get mastitis, a clogged milk duct or just experience overall soreness. This is why I love Booby Tubes®. They are natural, gel-free breast packs made with a 100% organic cotton shell and filled with all-natural flax seed. What’s great about them is that you can use warm or cold, depending on your nursing needs. When heated, they can help encourage milk flow, avoid clogged ducts, promote let-down and comfort the symptoms of infection. When stored in the freezer to use as a cold compress, it is used to help reduce the swelling and tenderness of engorgement and weaning.
13. Nursing Cover
I don’t think I’ll be the type of mom that will feel like I have to cover up every time I am breastfeeding. However, if family is visiting or if I’m in a very public place I’m going to feel a little more at ease having a cute nursing cover to discreetly breastfeed my baby. If you feel the same way and want to have a little modesty, this nursing cover from Covered Goods is a perfect product to have. I will still be able to breastfeed our son comfortably (both for me and baby), have the privacy that I want, and feel/look cute. 😉 I also love that their cover can be used more than one way. I wrote all about it here.
14. Lactation Consultant
I know that a lactation consultant is not a product, but she’s someone who can really turn your breastfeeding experience around if you’re having difficulty. Make sure that you visit with a local IBCLC if you are having major issues. You can either make an appointment to go see one or you can make an appointment for her to come into your home. Another great option is to visit one of your local La Leche League groups for support.
With these 14 tips you’re sure to get off to a great start! Were there any products/resources that you used and loved? Please sure and add to our list by commenting below!!