Reverse WFMW: Breastfeeding Tips for Sis

What a perfect week for a BACKWARDS Works For Me Wednesday!

In my last post, “free baby holding“, I shared my previous experiences as nursing mom and a little about my sister’s current experiences as she learns how to nurse her new baby. I remembered quite a bit and was able to give her some tips that have really made things easier, but my knowledge base is tiny compared to what my fellow bloggers can offer.

So here’s my plea:

Moms out there – if you nursed or are nursing your babies – what are some favorite, tried and true tips and tricks you employed to make your breastfeeding experience better and easier? Everything from products to techniques, clothing and gadgets, cleaning and storing milk – any suggestions you might have would be VERY much appreciated!

Here are three tips that really made a difference yesterday. TMI ALERT: (click away to avoid a candid discussion of logistics)

1. If you have a scab on your nipple, take a very warm washcloth and hold it to your nipple until the scab softens. The scab will fall off and latching will be much less painful. There will be hardly – if any – blood. Doing this also speeds up healing because the scab isn’t being pulled off every time the baby nurses. My nephew was a week old yesterday and my sister’s nipples are almost completely healed.

2. When you are expressing milk, RELAX. Yesterday, my sister was trying to express and she was getting NOTHING. I told her to stop looking at the pump. To drop her shoulders. Close her eyes. Get comfortable. Breath deep. Consciously slow her heartbeat and relax her muscles. Then I told her to look up. I was holding the baby and he was looking around. He yawned. He sneezed. My sister laughed and started talking about him. We discussed how cute he was. After about 2 minutes, I told my sister to look at the pump. She looked down and then she jerked her head back up and said, “HOLY COW, I can’t believe this crap really works!!!” Having trouble expressing? It’s not all mechanics. RELAX. Think about the baby. When I expressed at work, I looked at pictures of my babies.

3. DRINK LOTS OF WATER!!! My sister keeps forgetting to get some water before she sits down to nurse. I suggested that she leave water bottles near all the different places she nurses.

Get more great tips and ideas over at Works for Me Wednesday hosted by Shannon at Rocks in My Dryer.