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Is it ever NOT hard at the beginning? - Page 2

post #21 of 47
It's always been a piece of cake for me! It's just later on that I have problems like plugged ducts and mastitis unfortunately. :
post #22 of 47
My first was a breeze to nurse, she wa hungry immediately and had a great latch. I hardly had sore nipples. I experienced a few minor issues with my 2nd and 3rd babies. The only difference I can attribute to this is that my 1st was 9 days overdue-maybe she just came out extra hungry?
post #23 of 47
I have not really had any issues yet and my DD is almost 12 weeks old. I was a little sore in the begining, but nothing that made my toes curl! I think that you just need to believe that it will go easily. Positive thinking is the best way to make it work I think. I think what worked best for us was that I got DD on my chest immediately after birth and kept her there for 2 hours. I just let her explore my nipples and never forced her on. That way she learned how to nurse rather than be taught. I also gave her a lot of skin to skin time in the first few weeks, which is shown to increase bonding and breastfeeding success. It is really important not to bathe your baby right away also because their hands smell like amniotic fluid which also smells like what your nipple secretes. They smell their hands and it allows them to find the nipple easier in the begining.
post #24 of 47
It was quite easy for me, both times. And yeah I didn't post about it, I think it's true that you hear the hard stories because people are reaching out for help. We had no major issues either time. With my second, she had some trouble latching, but it just required patience and practice, it didnt hurt, she didn't lose weight, none of that.
post #25 of 47
Originally Posted by alegna View Post

For success- ASSUME it will work. Plan for it to work. Make it work.

No bottles, formula or artificial nipples in the house at first. Know that any artificial nipple at any time has the potential to cause problems.
When I was pregnant with ds1 and people asked me if I planned on bf'ing the answer was "YES!" not "I'm going to try."
Your attitude about it has a huge impact.

Breastfeeding has been easy for me both times but I credit my mom. I watched her successfully nurse my 3 brothers (who were all born when I was a teenager). So I had her great example to learn from. Latching takes effort to learn with each baby. Going from nursing a toddler to an infant again took me some adjustment but no problems to speak of. But I did have sore nipples both times so lansinoh was my friend. I don't think there is anything you can do to prepare for that physically but knowing it will be rough and that it happens to just about everyone will help you stick it out.
post #26 of 47
My mom BF 9 kids and never had any issues at all. I've only had one and it was difficult at first (trouble learning to latch and stay latched) and a little tough for the first month or two with the amount of soreness/pain, but now it is very easy.

I just think it's important for moms to realize they might have to work at it a little bit but for the majority of women it will work out in the end.

post #27 of 47
Originally Posted by MamaEli View Post
Don't forget your lanolin cream!

That is my top issue. It's not a latching problem, but those first couple weeks I get incredibly sore, tender, and even scabbed nipples. Once they "toughen up" I'm good to go. (I always thought that was an OWT.) You can also use expressed milk, rub it on the nipple and let air dry, if this is an issue you end up facing.

Good luck and congrats on your upcoming LO!
I agree. And get the LC on staff to help you any chance you need her. Go to the breastfeeding class at the hospital the day after you have you baby even if you know what to do. You'll meet the LC's that way.

Also, make sure they know you will be breastfeeding only! No glucose water, no nipples other than your own....

My first took to nursing like a fish to water. It was wonderful.

My second, not so much. It took alot of work but we are still nursing...

Best wishes for a smooth delivery and a wonderful nursing start!
post #28 of 47
Originally Posted by handsandfeet View Post
I'm 24 weeks pg, and very determined to BF my LO when he arrives, and came on this part of mothering to get educated! I'm pretty freaked out by all I'm reading though, as far as how tough it is in the beginning. Is it always hard? My sister seems to have had a very easy time of it, so I thought it was pretty instinctual and easy...

Any suggestions for "preparing" for the early weeks? Things to do right off the bat to prevent problems??

Everything will be fine, you'll see . When I was pregnant, I read a book about breastfeeding and I remember being shocked by the number of problems I found out about. For us, it was very easy at the beginning, lasinosh (sp?) helped and also cabbage leaves for the engorgement (be careful not to use them for more than a day or two after milk comes in, as it can diminish milk supply). I had no problems at all except recurrent plugged ducts that I learned how to control only after 3 years of nursing.

Think of it this way: you can have problems with any functional body part: you can get cuts, burns on your hands, scratches, slam your fingers in the doors by accident, but you don't stop using your hands. Chances are everything will be fine.

Also, when people post, they usually write about problems and more rarely about how nice everything goes.

Good luck and keep us posted.
post #29 of 47
With my 2nd babe it took 3 days of sore nipples until they were 'broken in' and smooth sailing from there but the 2nd time around you are more relaxed and confident.
post #30 of 47
With my DD it was very hard for about 6 weeks. With DS it was 100% problem free the entire time he nursed (almost 3 years).

I would prepare by attending a LLL meeting or something similar--just to surround yourself with examples of successful BF.
post #31 of 47
I had an easy time nursing ds #2. I have to admit it was my mission, since BF was so hard with my ds #1, I was determined to know everything about breastfeeding the second time around. I read every book there was on the subject and I took a breastfeeding class. When ds entered into the world, we were ready to go! Nursing him was such a joy from the very beginning.
My two cents....read everything about BF, latching on and off, buy some lanisoh just in case and have a good BF counselor number on hand for questions.
post #32 of 47
My 7 month old latched on at about 15 minutes old. I have had about 10 minutes of discomfort from sore nipples total in the entire experience. This is so easy that it seems bizarre to me that anyone would want to deal with the hassle of bottles.

That said: pumping *sucks*. It hurts and I don't get as much milk out. I've stopped bothering. I have a freezer stash that would get me through about a day and a half if I really really need it. It will be good for ~4 more months. I figure that's a good enough cover for us.
post #33 of 47
Thread Starter 
Thank you all SO much for the supportive replies! I hadn't thought about the fact that most ppl posting in this forum are having trouble and getting advice, so the "easy" ones aren't so verbal!

Anyway, I do think I have the right mindset (I WILL BF -- nothing else will do for my LO!), so will take your advice and go with the flow, have Lansinoh and a LC on hand, no bathing baby at first, no other nipples, etc. And am SO grateful to have this forum to come to, should problems arise.

post #34 of 47
yay for your enthusiasm...

i will warn you BFing opens the hormone floodgates - even still i get upset if ds doesn't nurse well because of some silly thing. just know its hormones - that helped me a lot!!!
post #35 of 47
It wasn't hard for me. The hardest part was waking him up to eat at first. Other than that, I've been really lucky and it has been a breeze. You don't usually hear the good stories only the bad ones, so stay confident. You can do it!
post #36 of 47
The most important thing is make sure your latch is good FROM THE START. Even that first day, don't settle for a mediocre latch. It may seem like the first days don't matter much, but they are crucial. Nothing can replace a good latch.

Avoid bottles, dummies and nipple shields as a pp suggested. Lanolin creme is good, but it's not necessary.

With my first, I think I settled for a mediocre latch and suffered a lot from it. This time, I made sure that dd's latch was perfect and never let her 'nipple suck' at all. I haven't had any sore nipples at all, though admittedly, I am still nursing my toddler so maybe they were 'tough' already, though I don't believe in 'toughening' the nipples. (Plus, nursing was agony through my whole pregnancy and my nipples were constantly sore, so maybe that didn't make much an impact after all.)

Nursing doesn't have to be painful at first, but for many it is. You can still persevere, even if it is hard at the start. Many people do keep feeding for years even after a rough start. Good luck! May your experience be painless and easy! And remember, good positioning and attachment is the key.
post #37 of 47
Originally Posted by Carita View Post
yay for your enthusiasm...

i will warn you BFing opens the hormone floodgates - even still i get upset if ds doesn't nurse well because of some silly thing. just know its hormones - that helped me a lot!!!
: beware the hormones. Don't know if it was bfing or pp hormones but I cried at the drop of a hat for the first few weeks and wasn't entirely reasonable. The filter between my brain and mouth disappeared so several people were treated to the sarcastic thoughts I usually keep to myself. The night nurse who kept suggesting a bottle "to top her off", the ped's nurse who asked my how many oz dd was taking after being told 3 times dd was ebf. People like that got uncensored replies from me.

I think the best thing you can do is to become familiar with the normal course of BFing and know how some of the most common problems start so you can nip them in the bud. You're already well on your way there.
post #38 of 47
Are you planning on giving birth in a hospital setting? if you are, find out what kind of support the staff offers for breastfeeding moms. I had no clue it was going to be a problem, but my DD had a hard time latching for the first day or so and the staff wouldn't let me leave the hospital until she was breastfeeding correctly.
Also, I had a lot of pain for the first month or two but nothing too bad.
Also, be prepared for baby to want to nurse a *lot* more than "every 1-4" hours. I thought there was something terribly wrong with my daughter because once she got the hang of breastfeeding she pretty much cried any time she was off the nipple. Once my dr. assured me that it was ok I felt better, but I sure wish someone would have told me i was going to be nursing so darn much.
Oh, try nursing laying down. it helped me when I had an surplus of milk(doesn't come out too fast that way) and it allows you to rest while you nurse.
Good Luck!
post #39 of 47
Honestly, for me, it was physically easy. I have yet to have any nipple problems or infections. His latch was pretty good from the beginning. My sister helped me a little, but mostly, I was ok.

For me, I struggled emotionally a bit at first. I had read that breastfeeding was akin to an orgasmic experience, and it wasn't for me! I really cried every time I nursed at first-not from pain, but it was some sort of weird emotional/hormonal reaction. My sister (who nursed her two for two years) said, "just tell yourself you'll do it for 6 weeks-set a goal. It will help you get through the early tough times". I did that, and she was right. By the time I got to six weeks, the emotional stuff was gone, and I had the nursing thing figured out.
post #40 of 47
I had some minor latch issues in the beginning that left me with cracked, bleeding nipples, but my milk came in quickly and my dd was above her birth weight at 5 days old. It was smooth sailing from day 5 onward!
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