Mothering through breastfeeding

When you’re expecting a new baby, the to-do list seems endless:  decide on colors for the nursery, choose and buy diapers, pick out items for the baby registry.  It is easy to get caught up in these details because they are fun preparations for us to make.  We want to welcome our new baby to the world in the most comfortable setting we can imagine.

One of the most important decisions expectant parents face is whether or not to breastfeed.  La Leche League of Meadville is here to help you make a positive decision for your baby.

Why Breastfeed?
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP):

  • Human milk is species-specific. It is the perfect food for your baby.
  • Breastfeeding your baby helps to protect him or her from a wide range of infectious diseases.
  • Mothers who breastfeed are at a lower risk for breast cancer and ovarian cancer.
  • Breastfeeding is usually less expensive than formula feeding, especially when considering the health care savings to both mothers and babies.
  • Breastfeeding is better for the environment, since it doesn’t require the production or disposal of packaging materials.

How long will I breastfeed?
When you have a newborn, just focus on feeding your new baby and getting help if you need it.  Then, when breastfeeding is going smoothly, you’ll be able to make decisions about when you want to stop from a position of strength, instead of stopping because you had no choice.      -Advice from The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, Published by La Leche League International in 2010

I need help!
Many nursing moms have challenges to overcome. . .

  • learning how to encourage a baby to latch on effectively.
  • finding ideas for how to relieve engorgement.
  • looking for ways to continue to breastfeed once returning to work.
  • establishing a strong milk supply

It is completely normal to have concerns such as these in your new life, so try not to let it discourage you. Successful breastfeeding often means overcoming small and large challenges; the key is knowing where to find support.
Speak to someone who is knowledgeable about breastfeeding, such as a La Leche League leader.  Any normal part of life, such as breastfeeding a baby, will have little glitches that need to be ironed out along the way.  Having accurate information will enable you to continue breastfeeding, smoothing out any “bumps in the road” as you travel your own mothering journey.