Hi, I am Krystal and i am due dec 10th. This is my first child. I am thinking about breastfeeding but I am kinda scared of it. I have lots friend and fmaily and everyone has mixed feelings about breastfeeding. But I heard it is better to breastfeed then bottlefeed. Is there any advise for me to get over it and do it.
It is a personal decision, I personally breastfed my daughter because formula is very expensive and they get lots of anti bodies that help them resist illness until they can get their shots. No one answer is going to fit for every family situation, I am now breastfeeding in the morning before work and in the evening before bed time but my daughter gets formula during the day.
It is a very emotionally intense bond that you create with your child when you breastfeed and that was something that I wanted. I would suggest that you keep an open mind about it, try to breastfeed and if you are uncomfortable or it doesn't work for you then go to formula. Just keep in mind for about the first week or so your nipples can be very very sore just getting used to the breastfeeding after that it's not so bad. My daughter is now 5 months old and is thriving the way we are feeding but I had great guilt when I first started giving her formula.
I love the closeness with my kids when breastfeeding. DD weaned at 14 months and DS is going strong at 8 months. Before you decide, I highly recommend you attend a lactation class. Breastfeeding is not necessarily easy or instinctual. Some babies have a hard time finding the latch, and it really only takes one bad latch to cause nipple damage. DD bit me hard one of the first times she latched and bruised that side. DS on the other hand took to it like a champ. i did have to pull his lower lip down, but otherwise he had it.
Even if you do it right, the first week or so can be somewhat painful just from the letdown until your body gets used to the sensation.
no one in my family or DH's family breastfed, but I was pretty determined. Formula is expensive, a pain to get ready and you have a horde of bottles to look after. Granted i'm a sahm so that makes it that much easier for me, but being able to feed your baby the instant he or she is hungry is wonderful. It's also great to not have to deal with bottles in the middle of the night. you also don't have to worry about finding the right formula that doesn't cause gas, reflux, constipation, etc. Though that's not to say that BF babies don't have reflux or gas, but many babies are sensitive to various formulas and it can be tough finding the one best for your baby.
Check with your hospital to see if they have the LC visit you after the birth and before you check out. This is a great resource and can help you feel more comfortable if you decide to nurse. also look for support groups in your area.
But best depends on the individual. From a purely medical standpoint, breast is best, but more factors go into that decision for mothers.
Oh, something else about breastfeeding, for those first couple of days you will have some pretty serious contractions as your uterus shrinks back down. I found after my son it really helped in the recovery. I was much less swollen in the tummy than my roommate who was bottle feeding and for me the heaviest bleeding was over by day 3. Breastfeeding does help your body bounce back and helps burn extra calories. It also reduces your risk for breast cancer.
But don't feel bad if you don't feel up to it. Formula isn't evil and is a good alternative for mothers who can't or don't feel comfortable breastfeeding.
Breast feeding is without a doubt better for you and better for baby. It's part of the natural cycle of child birth. It is the single best food your baby can get, formula can not even come close to the nutritional value and immune system support breast milk provides. It is the perfect food for preping their lil digestive tracks and you never have to worry about finding the right formula or up set tummys from the wrong formula for your baby. It is also convinent and inexpensive. In the middle of the night when you have to feed you just put that baby on the breast and lay there and let them eat. You dont need to turn the lights on or mix anything. Don't let ANYONE tell you that breast fed babies get hungry more often or are less likley to sleep through the night, it is simply not ture. Breast milk is just as satisfying if not more for a baby than any formula. It is after all what they are made to eat! Breast feeding is also better for you. It will take off that extra baby weight, keep your period at bay, lower your risk for breast, ovarian, and uterin cancer, it will alsohelp you form a special bond with your baby becuase it will be something speical just the two of you share. The best wy to be sure you will be succesful at it is to educate yourself and find some support! Le Leche League is AWESOME! And so is kellymom.org. I'm not going to lie, the first 2-3 weeks while you both are learning how to do it are the toughest but you can get through it and once you both get the hang of it, it's the best! Your nipples will no longer hurt and it will actually become something you look forward to. You just gotta tough out the first few weeks. Trust me, it is sooooooo worth it!
Hey Krystal! I read the above answers and thought they all gave GREAT advice... I wanted to add 2 things... 1.) I was worried that is would be weird to bf... like feel weird or something, so I told DH we'd try it but no guarantee. Well, it wasn't weird at all, I worried for nothing. 2.) Don't let the fact that it can be difficult at first discurage you; we actually had a hard time up until about 10 weeks (not with pain and stuff, just with her latching and getting enough milk). We supplemented by offering formula every evening and pumping to increase supply. I finally said I was giving it up, but it got better practically overnight. Now she is 6 mo old and I really enjoy that special time with her, and I think its way easier, cheaper, and better for her than formula. Esp in the early early morning when I just lay her beside me to nurse while we both catch some more zzzs! *BUT I do agree, don't feel guilty if is doesn't work out and you do formula!
Breastfeeding is healthier for the baby and way less expensive for you! Plus with breastfeeding you don't have to wash bottles or get up in the night to make a bottle, your breasts are always there and ready. Breastfeeding does take patience and committment. If you do decide to breastfeed you need to mentally prepare yourself to stick with it and tell yourself that you can do it and that you are providing for your child. In the beginning breastfeed for as long as it takes and as often as the baby wants to. It takes awhile to get used to it, but after your milk comes in and you and your baby establish a routine, it is a breeze. Good luck to you.
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