One of the most important things for a new mom is to be able to separate breastfeeding fact from fiction.
Breastfeeding is a wonderful time for a mother to bond with her child. It also offers a host of benefits for both baby and mom. In fact, the energy needed to breastfed daily is actually equivalent to walking seven miles. Plus, oxytocin is triggered during breastfeeding, which relaxes both you and your little one. You’ve probably read and heard a lot about breastfeeding since you found out you were pregnant; however, here are some of the common myths dispelled!
Myth #1: It’s normal for breastfeeding to hurt: While tenderness during the first couple of days of breastfeeding is normal, this should only be temporary. Breastfeeding should never be so painful that you dread it. If you do experience any pain, even a mild form, it could be caused by your baby not latching on properly. Also, if you notice new pain when breastfeeding it could be a sign of a yeast infection or mastitis. Talk to your doctor if these symptoms occur.
Myth #2: Pumping tells you how much milk you have: The amount of milk you have will depend on multiple factors including stress and fluid intake. If your baby breastfeeds well than he can get more milk than can actually be pumped. Pumping milk will only let you know how much milk you can actually pump.
Myth #3: Formulas today are almost identical to breast milk: While modern-day formulas try to mimic breast milk they do not contain enzymes, antibodies, living cells or hormones like breast milk does. Also the proteins and fats your baby will get with breast milk will be different from those that he would get from formula, and will have beneficial effects on your baby's development and immune system.
Myth #4: Stop breastfeeding if you have an infection: While there are rare circumstances in which this isn’t true, you should continue breastfeeding your baby. The best defense for your baby against infection is to continue breastfeeding so he gets the proper nutrients he needs for his immune system.
If you ever have any questions about breastfeeding or if it’s time to schedule your baby’s next checkup, then call Carolina Kids Pediatrics, your Raleigh pediatrician, right away for an appointment. Remember that Jerrianne Webb, our lactation consultant, is here to help answer your questions.