Breastfeeding can be a most rewarding experience for mother and baby. It is a time when you can cuddle and get to know each other, getting to know your voice, and when your baby is held on your breast, your milk production will come and baby will be ready to feed. Your baby will let you know when he/she wants to feed, by sucking their fist, or licking their lips, or rooting around for the nipple.

Make sure you are comfortable, either lying down, or sitting in a comfortable chair, a rocking chair is always the best, if you have one. Relax, bring your baby to your breast, then hold them close, making sure that they are held firmly, but not too tight. Place your fingers on the underside, with the thumb on the top of your breast, and squeeze a little milk out, and the baby will then latch on to your nipple.

With their chin on the breast, their mouth will open and you may guide them to the nipple, if they haven’t found it already. When their mouth is on the nipple and over the areola, (the dark part) then there will be a seal formed. Your baby will then start to suck, softly at first, then more active, as they receive the milk into their mouth. They will probably suck a couple of mouthfuls and then take a breath. It doesn’t take long for babies to learn about breastfeeding.

When they have had enough on that breast, they will stop, then it is time to burp them. Right after burping, they can go on the other breast and finish. You might have to break the suction with your finger, as they haven’t learned about this yet. The next time you are breastfeeding them, start with the last breast. Take your time and get to know your babies facial expressions so you will know what they want in the future.

Colostrum is the name of the first milk, full of vitamins, proteins and protection for your babies immune system. Your first milk is very concentrated, as your baby’s stomach is small and can’t take a lot at once and then they need to eat more often. The more you feed your baby, the more milk will keep coming. Always watch your baby for signs that they are finished breastfeeding, then burp them again. In the first few weeks, they will need to eat about every three hours or so, then it will be longer as they grow.

You will need to feed them through the night also, to keep the flow of milk to continue coming. Mommy’s milk is all baby will need for quite awhile, as it supplies everything required for a good healthy baby. Growth spurts are quite normal and your baby will want to feed more often during those times. Remember, when ceasing the breastfeeding, do so gently for both you and baby.