Breastfeeding Support

In babies, Children, Fitness, parenting, Uncategorized by compleoPTLeave a Comment

Is this NORMAL? When to seek breastfeeding support. 

If I’m being honest, I had NO IDEA what I was doing when I became a mom. It’s embarrassing, I’m a BABY DIETITIAN (and now a Breastfeeding Specialist), I literally grow babies for a living, and I struggled to grow my own. 

Honestly, all the book knowledge in the world cannot prepare you for becoming a mother. None of it REALLY makes sense until you’re in the trenches trying to stay afloat during those first weeks. 

Thankfully, I had an awesome #momsquad which was conveniently made of other baby dietitians and lactation consultants (#blessed) to help answer all of my “is this NORMAL?!” questions.

Now, I realize that not everyone has a bunch of dietitian and lactation consultant friends hanging around – that is NOT “normal.” But that is precisely why I want to be here for YOU. Let me join your #momsquad and be your personal baby dietitian and breastfeeding specialist!  

In the meantime, here is a list of common “Is this NORMAL” questions we get from our parents, and how to know when to seek more support! 

Is it normal for my baby to lose weight?

YES! 

Babies often lose 5-10% of their birth weight during the first few days of life. This is completely NORMAL. The goal is for them to regain that weight back and be back to birth weight by their 2-week checkup. 

When to seek support:

  • if Baby is having less than 6 wet + 3 dirty diapers after day 6 of life
  • if Baby lost more than 10% of their birth weight or hasn’t returned to birth weight by 2 weeks of life

How a Breastfeeding Specialist/Baby Dietitian can help:

  • Assess weight trends and set weight gain goals
  • Optimize latch, positioning and/or pumping techniques
  • Do weighted feed to estimate milk transfer
  • Set calorie intake goals and recommend a supplementation plan as needed

Is it normal for my nipples to hurt while breastfeeding/pumping?

Normal? NO. Common? Unfortunately. 

Sure, there may be some discomfort and tenderness when you first start out breastfeeding or pumping. As there would be any new repetitive action. But it should not be PAINFUL. If it is there could be a number of things wrong such as poor latch, tethered oral tissues, hypo or hypertonia, using the wrong size pumping parts or settings. 

When to seek support:

  • Immediately

How a Breastfeeding Specialist/Baby Dietitian can help:

  • Identify root cause of pain
  • Refer to other Health Care Professionals to address tone and muscle coordination
  • Optimize latch, positioning, and/or pumping techniques to reduce pain 

Is it normal that my baby won’t latch on to the breast? 

It’s not NORMAL, but it is COMMON. If it wasn’t common, I’d be out of a job. Remember, we have time to perfect the latch – but we don’t have time to waste on establishing supply.  

When to seek support:

  • If your goal is to feed at the breast – immediately

How a Breastfeeding Specialist/Baby Dietitian can help:

  • Provide tools to protect supply while working on latch
  • Assess Mother and Baby’s anatomy and provide suggestions to meet specific needs
  • Recommend supplementation (at breast, cup, syringe, bottle) to meet Baby’s nutrition needs while working on latch 

Is it normal that my baby is gassy/fussy/spitting up all the time? 

Not really. I mean all babies have gas, cry, and spit-up. But if it is happening ALL. THE. TIME. or if it is affecting their sleep or weight gain. It’s probably NOT normal. But it also does not mean that changing up your or Baby’s diet will help.

When to seek support:

  • If Baby is not meeting weight gain goals
  • If Baby (and you!) are unable to sleep because of symptoms

How a Breastfeeding Specialist/Baby Dietitian can help:

  • Review entire feeding process (lots of things can cause these symptoms, not JUST what Baby is eating)
  • Coach on different feeding techniques to encourage symptom relief
  • Help with maternal elimination diets and formula recommendations as needed
  • Set weight gain and intake goals while figuring it all out

So my point is, we weren’t meant to do this alone! There can be a whole lot of stress and a whole lot of unknown. Get yourself a Breastfeeding Specialist / Baby Dietitian that can support you and help you feed your Baby with CONFIDENCE. 

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