We've teamed up with mum-of-three, Claire Ryall, to look at some practical breastfeeding tips, which may help, especially in the early days when you and your baby are learning.
- Look after yourself. It is important for you to be rested and hydrated which will help with milk supply. Make sure you have a drink to hand, a handy tip is to fill a sports water bottle in the morning and keep it to hand, it’s easier to use than a screw top bottle when you might only have one hand free!
- One up / one down - this refers to clothing. Many mums find it easier to layer with a vest top under a normal top. The top can be pulled up while the vest top is pulled down, allowing easy access but keeping your tummy covered.
- Snuggle! Try to get plenty of skin to skin contact, this can also help your milk supply. It may mean having to hold off visitors for a while until you feel you are ready. Taking this time at the start can really help later on.
- If (and only if!) it makes you feel more comfortable, carry a shawl or lightweight scarf with you for cover. Some babies don’t like this but some prefer it as there are less distractions. Do what makes you feel comfortable.
- Ask for support. There are often little things that can make breastfeeding easier and talking to other mums who have been there can make the world of difference. How you feed your baby is your choice, but if you want to breastfeed and need help - ask! There are breastfeeding support groups across the country or speak to your midwife or health visitor.
Claire trained as a breastfeeding peer supporter in 2011 when her first son was born. Having faced many difficulties following a premature birth she was inspired to help other mums by offering a listening ear and support.