Question:

I had a Caesarian Section to have my baby, how long should I wait to breastfeed him/her?

Answer:

Generally, all newborn babies must be put to breast to start suckling for the establishment of breastfeeding with 30 minutes to an hour of birth regardless of the mode of delivery and on condition that the baby does not require any urgent medical attention due to ill health. The earlier this is done the better.

You see although your breasts developed to produce milk during pregnancy (hence the increase in size), the milk will only flow when the baby suckles them. The longer you wait the more difficult it is for this to happen, causing further anxiety which further worsens the situation.

Now, medical science has advanced so you most likely had a caesarian section while you were awake. This is because of the spinal anaesthesia you were given. The advantage here is that there are no drugs present within your breast milk that can be harmful to your baby. So the moment the baby comes out and is well, you can actually initiate breastfeeding while your doctors finish up the procedure. Yes!

If this is a challenge, I will encourage you to put your precious baby to breast immediately you are taken to the recovery ward. The baby does not need to be given any artificial feeds prior to this.

Question:

Can I breastfeed while lying down?

Answer:

The simple answer here is YES! There are several breastfeeding positions including lying down positions. Your midwife or paediatrician will help you while you lie on your side with the baby on your curled dependent arm. Amazingly, newborn babies are able to actually locate the nipple of the breast by themselves. It poses no risk of the breast milk choking the baby but I will advise that an expert be there to assist any first time mum who is not used to this position.

Let me also caution that the skill of breastfeeding is an ART that must be taught so do not hesitate to ask for help while you are in the hospital prior to your discharge from the experts.

Question:

I delivered two days ago and I think I am not producing enough milk for my baby. I can’t see any milk flowing from my breasts even when I squeeze them but the baby is always suckling and seems fine. Is everything ok? I’m I producing enough breast milk?

Answer:

In the first 3 to 5 days following delivery, the initial type of breast milk produced called colostrum or fore milk is thick and yellow. The new mum will not see this milk practically dripping from her breasts but their newborn babies get them during suckling. The more the baby suckles your breasts, the more milk is produced.

It is unfortunate though as in certain traditions the fore milk which is rich in essential fats for brain development and warmth, certain vital substances to protect against infections and of course calories are expressed (squeezed out) and discarded.

Other factors necessary to ensure constant, uninterrupted breast milk production to your baby is early initiation of breastfeeding (within 30 minutes to an hour of delivery); proper technique (attachment and positioning of baby to the breast); and the feel good factor of the mum (a happy and stress free mum)

ARTICLE BY 
DR LAWRENCE OSEI-TUTU
OFFICIAL DOCTOR OF BISA AND SPECIALIST PAEDIATRICIAN AND HEALTH ADVOCATE; KOMFO ANOKYE TEACH HOSP-KATH-GHANA

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CategoryOur doctors say
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    And a lot of thinking

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