10 Things New Moms Should Know About Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding is a word expectant and new moms hear non-stop. Everyone has an opinion on it and how it should be done. When it comes to feeding your baby, each mother and family needs to find a solution that works for them. Whether your family chooses to exclusively breastfeed, exclusively formula feed or anything in between the important thing is keeping your baby fed. If you choose to fully or partially breastfeed your baby there are some things you should know. Be sure to read up on breastfeeding tips and techniques to make the most of this special part of motherhood.

RELATED: A Surprising Amount Of People Still Think Public Breastfeeding Is Bad

10 Headaches

woman frustrated baby work

Some women are lucky and avoid this particular unpleasant side effect. Breastfeeding promotes a specific hormone balance in a woman's body. The shift in hormones can cause headaches. The handful of moms who experience this know that it can make nursing difficult and throw off your nursing routine. If you find that you're suffering from headaches while breastfeeding please discuss it with your doctor. There's no reason to suffer in silence. This common breastfeeding complication doesn't have to ruin the experience for you and your baby.

9 Good For Baby

Breastfeeding provides a lot of benefits for baby. Breast milk not only nourishes your baby but it also boosts and supports their budding immune system too. Breastfeeding even reduces your baby's risk of SIDS according to the AAP. Nursing is also incredibly soothing for babies. This calming effect combined with the sleep-supporting elements found in breast milk makes night time feeding simple for babies.

RELATED: 10 Incredible Books For First-Time Parents

Studies have shown that breastfed babies fall back to sleep faster after nighttime feedings. A US Study showed that exclusive breastfeeding for the first three months of life has been shown to increase white brain matter by 20 to 30% and preschoolers.

8 Good For Mom

there's lots of research to back up the many benefits for baby of breastfeeding but did you know that breastfeeding is good for new moms as well? While you're breastfeeding your baby your body releases the hormones prolactin and oxytocin. Both of these hormones contribute to a feeling of peaceful calm. These hormones will also help you recover from childbirth. A breastfeeding mom's uterus can return to normal size faster. Nursing also slows the return of a menstrual cycle which many moms find is an added benefit.

7 Economical

baby bottle formula

Breastfeeding benefits the whole family when it comes to the pocketbook. Breastfeeding offers significant savings compared to formula feeding. There is the cost of keeping mom well-nourished and well-fed, but a few extra fruits and vegetables are much more affordable than frequently purchasing formula. By most estimates formula feeding your child for their first year of life costs more than $1,500. Even if you consider the cost of breastfeeding tools and equipment like pumps nipple cream breast pads it's still far more economical than formula feeding your baby.

6 Bonding

Snuggling your baby close, especially skin to skin, is an essential form of bonding. Breastfeeding affords a new mother lots of opportunities to hold and bond with baby every time he's hungry. Breastfeeding builds time into a new mom's day that's just one-on-one with her and baby snuggling as close as possible. Those bonding moments create a strong attachment. Mom's body releases love and bonding hormones as she nurses as well. Breastfeeding creates time to fall in love with your baby. that bond is undeniable. These sweet moments of bonding are often cited as the biggest benefit of breastfeeding for new moms. Taking these calming breaks out of your busy day can keep you sane with your newborn baby.

5 It's A Skill

You might think that breastfeeding must come naturally to mothers and their babies but that couldn't be further from the truth. Breastfeeding is often difficult at first because it requires experience and technique. Not only does mom need to learn a whole new set of skills, but so does her new baby too. It's important to have realistic expectations. Breastfeeding may take several days weeks or even months for a mom and her new baby or babies to learn. Many families directly benefit from the services of a lactation consultant. These highly trained professionals can teach you the ins and outs of breastfeeding.

4 Convenience

Breastfeeding represents a significant investment of a mother's time but offers a lot when it comes to convenience. Bottle-feeding takes up more time than you may realize and requires a lot of preparation and forethought. You've got to sterilize those bottles, nipples, and containers.

RELATED: 10 Parenting Rules Kim Kardashian Follows

There's the time spent running out for emergency cans of formula as well. Breastfeeding eliminates all of those extra steps. Some mothers feel that they barely wake up while nursing their newborns at night. Once you establish a rhythm it becomes second nature to u your baby to your breast.

3 Bottle Feeding

Breastfeeding naturally evokes images of women with their newborns close to their chests. There are many families that are exclusively breastfeeding who never put their baby to the breast at all. Bottle feeding with breast milk is more common than you might think; it's a perfect option for moms need to return to the workforce, for families who adopt, grandparents and so much more. Your baby will still receive all the benefits of your breast milk regardless of if they eat it from a bottle or directly from the source. Don't let the idea of exclusively nursing turn you off to breastfeeding. If a demanding nursing schedule doesn't work for your family bottle feeding can be a viable option.

2 Supplementation

When it comes to feeding a newborn baby you may think there are only two options. While some families do choose to exclusively breastfeed or exclusively formula feed there are plenty of families who fall in the middle. There's a common myth that supplementing with formula can reduce your breast milk supply. With a regular breastfeeding schedule or even pumping it shouldn't affect your supply at all. Supplementing with formula simply ensures that your baby is getting the nutrients they need to grow even while being breastfed and possibly while going through supply issues.

1 Self Care

As a new mom, it can be hard to make time for self-care. Breastfeeding mothers need to make sure that they're taking care of themselves to keep their stress levels low and their milk supply high. When you're your baby's primary food source you have to make sure you're taking care of yourself. Now's the time to make sure that you're eating well and getting plenty of rest. Long, hot baths and showers can encourage milk to let down and even relieve engorgement. Relaxing can boost your supply so make time for yourself. Many women find it difficult to take time for themselves during and pregnancy. This can be an important part of your postpartum recovery. Take time to spoil yourself.

NEXT: 10 Hilarious Quotes About Parenting From Famous Mothers

More in Parenting