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Breastfeeding Questions

  1. #1
    mrs momo is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2005

    Breastfeeding Questions

    I should have read more or listened more carefully. Anyway, new baby is 3 days old so milk has started to come in. Can someone help me out on the following pls?

    1) Do I need to burp a breastfed baby? Some say yes some say no. So no idea who to listen to.

    2) When I lie down to feed it feels like the milk from the lying down side iof the breast s not being used so it still hurts after nursing. The rest of the breast is ok except for the part near the underarm.

    3) Should I switch sides during the feed and if so after how many minutes?

    4) What indicators to tell that the breast is really empty so the baby gets all parts of the breast milk eg foremilk and hindmilk?


  2. #2
    southside852 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2008

    1) when i nursed my son, i burped him. He kind of just did it naturally as I would usually just sit him upright after feeds and rub his back.

    2) i nursed in a chair upright - why don't you try that?

    3) yes, you should try and empty both breasts during a feed or at least pump the other after your baby feeds on one.

    4) i don't think there are any indicators other than that when your baby is full, he/she will stop. Your baby is getting all the vitamins he/she needs from nursing so would not worry about it. If you feel your breasts are still full, then pump out the rest into a bottle.

  3. #3
    Buckeroo is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Hong Kong

    1) I burped both kids. Same as southside852 --after a feed, sit the baby up, support under the chin/front of chest, then rub and/or pat the back. I would actually hear burps from them!

    2) I love to nurse lying down, too. Check the latch and make sure the baby is latched on properly. You could also try massaging the breast while you breastfeed --i.e., massage down towards the areola from the underarm.

    3) with #1, I remember doing 10-15 minutes on each side. When #2 was was younger, I would do the one-breast-per-feed rule and then pump out the milk from the other side. Between the two, I felt that one-side-per-feed was more efficient, for me.

    4) You will feel that your breast is more slack/soft and not hard or engorged. That's usually a sign that you have emptied the breast.

  4. #4
    aussiegal is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    I think you need to be careful about pumping too much if you have a tendency like I do to produce too much milk. The extra pumping can really become a problem. Theoretically the baby should be getting what he needs from each feed and therefore no need to pump but of course pumping at least a little means you will have supplies to freeze so someone else can help with feeding when you are tired.

    If you are not producing a lot of milk then pump away of course.

    I loved feeding lying down. It was a sanity saver! Sometimes my husband would get the baby at night, lie him down next to me, I'd feed him and when he was done hubbie would put him back to bed. It really helped me rest a bit more than getting up to feed in a chair each time.

  5. #5
    jane01 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Hong Kong

    Everyone is different, so just sharing experiences:
    1. I sat my babies upright after a feed and gently rubbed their backs. They either burped, or they didn't. Nothing I did really seemed to make any difference. Mine weren't particularly windy babies.
    2. I could never feed lying down, even in the middle of the night - just too uncomfortable for me, so I'm no help. If you are uncomfortable under the arm, it sounds like some of the ducts aren't being drained and you might need to massage the milk out of that bit.
    3. All bubs are different. My first fed from both sides. In the early days she'd be around 10-20 minutes on one side then I'd offer the other side. When she was older (say 6 months, she would feed for about 3 minutes on each side). My second only ever wanted one breast at a time - I've no idea why. She was the biggest fattest baby, so I just let her lead. I never pumped the second side. I had a good supply and didn't want to encourage too much milk.
    4. Breasts don't come with a measuring cup and it is really hard to tell what milk the baby is getting. Newborns are still quite slow to get all the milk, but I'd guess after 5'ish minutes they are getting the hindmilk. If it is hot, your body will produce more foremilk to quench your baby's thirst. If it is cold, not so much. The baby might fuss a little because it is harder to suck out the hindmilk, but just persist for a little while. The breast might feel like a deflated balloon when you baby is finished, or there might just be a gentle easing of the pressure, everyone is different.

    I'd recommend a lactation consultant - I used Annerly Midwives and I've also heard Mrs Chee is very good. At Annerly they have mothers groups and baby check ups where you can just bring baby in and ask the midwives questions - very useful and cost effective.

  6. #6
    LLL_Sarah is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Hong Kong

    Dear Mrs Momo,

    1) As others have said every baby (and every mother) is different. Some babies do need burping or at least sitting upright for a while and others don't. If you don't burp enough your baby will let you know by wriggling about. So my suggestion is always to not burp and see if your baby needs it. If he doesn't you've saved work and if he does very quickly you will know.

    2) It sounds like the weight of your breast against the bed is hampering the draining of the ducts. Try different positions to see if it helps. Another position which allows you to get rest is reclining with the baby on top of you instead of side lying. (Reclining is now thought to be the most natural way to breastfeed as it uses the baby's instincts and gravity as a help rather than a hindrance, which happens with sitting up straight and side lying.)

    3) Let the baby finish on one side (i.e. until he comes off - don't stop him) and then see if after a few minutes (maybe of sitting up and burping or of letting his cheek be next to your breast) if he wants the second side. If he takes the second side that is fine and if he doesn't want the second side that is also fine. Remember he may want a piece of chocolate cake after about 10 to 15 minutes (see thread Not enough milk - Top up bottles)

    Generally babies who only feed from one side per feed want more feeds through out the day. Although most mothers initially think that more feeds would be a problem, however, this depends on your life style. For a second time mum who needs to look after older children more but shorter feeds often work out as more manageable.

    4) It is not necessary to empty the breast when breastfeeding successfully - in fact it is impossible to do so! We are looking that you feel relief after the feed and that you can tell that some milk has been taken out. (If you feel fuller after feeding please get help from a lactation consultant or a LLL leader immediately.)

    Please don't worry about how much fore and hind milk your baby gets - your body will work this out for you without having to do anything. When your breast is full you have more sugar in your milk (called fore milk) and as your breast empties the milk gets more fat (called hind milk). The amount of fat in the milk is dependent on how full your breast is. And how full your breast is is dependent on your breast capacity - i.e. how much milk you can hold in your breast at any one time.

    If your breast capacity is large then you are likely to have a lot of milk in the morning (when well rested) and thus lots of fore milk and still have a lot of fore milk after the first few feeds. Thus the baby gets more fore milk in the morning and more hind milk in the evening. If your breast capacity is small then the baby gets both fore milk and hind milk at each feed. It really doesn't mater as the baby needs both fore milk and hind milk to grow and so long as you keep breastfeeding he will get both.

    I would like to mention a word or two about pumping. You are currently in a very critical stage of breastfeeding. Not only does your baby need to feed between 8 to 14 times a day but your body also needs to be fed from 8 to 14 times a day. Pumping is not the same as breastfeeding and so we only would use a pump at this time if there was a problem with the breastfeeding. Pumping instead of breastfeeding at this stage can lead to a long term low supply and pumping in addition to breastfeeding at this stage can lead to a long time over supply (also a problem). What is ideal is that your body and the baby's needs are matched and this is best worked out by direct breastfeeding. The first three weeks of breastfeeding are very intense work but once you've done this work the rest of breastfeeding is comparatively easy.

    Please remember you are always welcome to attend LLL meetings to get extra support with your breastfeeding. The meeting details are available at
    And the article. Why La Leche League?,
    explains why you might enjoy our meetings.

    Best wishes,

    La Leche League Leader

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