Breastfeeding in a Modern World by Baby & Me

Last Saturday, Z and I attended another talk by Baby & Me of Mothercare in BGC. I am always on the look out for their talks because, even if Z is already almost turning 3, I find that there are still a lot of things that I pick up and learn from these talks.

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The talk was about breastfeeding which was conducted by Ms. Abbie Yabot. Ms. Abbie is a certified lactation counselor since 2007. Sheย also has accreditation from La Leche League and is one of the leaders here in the Philippines. She is also a homeschooling advocate and conducted talks about homeschooling before as well. (See post here.)

Ms. Abbie Yabot talks about breastfeeding
Ms. Abbie Yabot talks about breastfeeding

Going back.ย Ms. Abbie discussed about the advantages of breastfeeding, the law of supply and demand in terms of breastfeeding, proper positioning and latching, as well as some of the breastfeeding myths.

Let me share to you a few of the things I have learned during the talk:

Advantages of Breastfeeding to Baby

  • Breastmilk is easier to digest
  • It is always at the right temperature and supply (no need to worry about overfeeding)
  • 6 months exclusive breastfeeding protects baby from all diseases up to 12 years old (may replace vaccinations)
  • 2 years of breastfeeding cuts risk from all family diseases by 50%

Advantages of Breastfeeding to Mommy

  • higher immune system
  • easier recovery from birth
  • faster weight loss and return to pre-pregnancy figure
  • reduce risks for hypertension, cancer, diabetes, etc
  • bonding with baby

Advantages of Breastfeeding to Daddy (yes, there are advantages for Dads as well ๐Ÿ™‚ )

  • Breastfeeding is economical. Saves Php6,000 – Php8,000 a month (almost Php100k annually)
  • Better sleep – Mommy feeds baby and Daddy burps and changes diapers
  • Closer bond with Mommy and Baby

Law of Supply and Demand (in terms of breastfeeding)

  • Breastmilk production begins at the brain
  • No demand, No supply
    • waiting for milk to “come out in 3-5 days” – well, I learned that this is not really true. It is advisable and recommended that as soon as the baby comes out, the baby latches on to the breast so that he will be able to get the precious colostrum (which is only a few drops and not really something that you can pump out)
      • Babies are awake 2 hours after birth then sleeps for 24-48 hours. So, the sooner the baby is breastfed, the faster mature milk will come.
  • Low demand, Low supply
    • mix feeding – once mix feeding is started, breastmilk supply decreases
  • Pituitary glad produces 2 hormones:
    • Prolactin
      • this is the mothering hormone
      • this hormone relaxes the mother and is responsible for the production of milk
    • Oxytocin
      • this hormone is responsibleย for delivering milk to the baby
      • this is the same hormone that is produced during sex

Things to Remember when positioning the baby for breastfeeding:

  • tummy to tummy (mommy’s to baby’s)
  • Ears, shoulder and hip in 1 straight line
  • bring baby up to mommy (Mommy should not be bending forward; this will hurt your back in the long run)
  • Mommy should be propped with pillows. If on sitting position, a stool would help support the legs and lap of the mommy.

Proper Latching:

  • most of areola should be into baby’s mouth
  • movement in whole jaw area (up to ear area) of the baby
  • gulping action in lower throat
  • cheeks well rounded, not sucked inwards
  • lips are in pouting position (fish lips)

How to know if baby has a good latch or a poor latch:

Good latch:

  • Chin is touching the breast
  • Nose is right above the breast area
  • More areola seen at top than bottom
  • Cheeks are well rounded
  • Nipple stretches far back into baby’s mouth

Poor latch:

  • Baby is attached to nipple only (this is when breastfeeding becomes painful)
  • Chin and nose are away from the breast
  • Cheeks are sucked inwards
  • Clucking sound
  • Nipple barely reaches half of baby’s mouth

This is the part that I loved about the talk. The discussion about breastfeeding myths. ๐Ÿ™‚ Here are some of the myths busted. I am including 5 but there were about 8 that was discussed:

Breastfeeding Myths

“I don’t have milk”

  • Less than 1% of women don’t have milk
  • Even men can breastfeed (there are men in South Africa that do this for survival.)
  • Milk in the first 3 days is colostrum which is very little and cannot be pumped or expressed.
  • Breastfeeding is not hereditary; it is the natural way to feed a baby

“Milk only comes out in 3-5 days”

  • colostrum is present from birth
  • for the first 3 days, the baby is not hungry since he is still full from placenta
  • Baby only needs 5ml per feeding since the tummy is just the size of a cashew nut
  • if you wait for 3rd – 5th day, the baby will miss the colostrum
  • Following the law of demand and supply – no sucking, no milk; limited sucking, low supply

“I don’t have enough milk”

  • Baby’s crying is not always a sign of hunger. It could be a sign of discomfort, pain, etc.
  • Mixed feeding or giving glucose water will contribute to lack of milk supply
  • Milk is produced when baby starts suckling; soft breasts is not an indication of no milk
  • Engorgement should be avoided as the next production will be less.

“One breast has milk while the other has water” (This is actually a funny one and the first time I’ve heard of it, too)

  • both breasts contains the same type and quality of breastmilk
  • Breastmilk is 70% water that is why it is not recommended to give water to babies below 6 months

“Poor mothers have poor milk quality”

  • Breastmilk is the grand equalizer of ย life
  • Moms from Payatas and Ayala Alabang have the same quality of milk
  • Undernourished women will have lower milk supply. It is still better to improve Mom’s diet instead of introducing formula (still cheaper in the long run compared to formula consumption)

Top 10 Breastfeeding Tips

  1. All women have milk
  2. Mommies have milk from birth
  3. Babies need to learn how to breastfeed.
  4. Colostrum is more medicinal than nutritive
  5. Position and latch are keys to success
  6. No pumping during the first six weeks
  7. Breastfeeding may be uncomfortable at the start
  8. Breastfeed exclusively for the first six months
  9. Wash hands but do not wash/wipe breasts
  10. Breastfeed babies up to 2 years old and beyond

There. I hope you are able to pick up some pointers on breastfeeding from the above notes I was able to capture during the talk. However, I would really recommend that one would consult a certified lactation specialist for more information.

With what I have learned so far, I am still glad that I was able to breastfeed Z for about 2 months or less but I think we could have made it longer had I known before what I know now. ๐Ÿ™‚ Well, at least I can say that I am now equipped for that second baby (when the right time comes ๐Ÿ™‚ ).

with Ms. Abbie (so sorry for the blurry photo)
with Ms. Abbie (so sorry for the blurry photo)

I asked Ms. Abbie if she can do the same talks in my hometown, Baguio City. Sheย said she’d love to but she doesn’t have contacts for venue. So, Baguio peeps, I need your help with this. Let me know ifย you know someone that we can coordinate with for talks like these. ๐Ÿ™‚ This is going to be a great project. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

 

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  1. Very informative post! I’m also a breastfeeding mom to my 18month old little girl! ๐Ÿ™‚ I actually had her mixed fed when she was about 2months-3months, that time I didn’t know much about breastfeeding. Good thing I joined Breastfeeding Pinays on facebook, and that helped me! Also, nakakatulong din yung mga celebrities na open sa public na they’re breastfeeding and sa mga talks like this, mas nagkakaron ng knowledge ang fellow moms natin about breastfeeding. And yes, talagang nakakatipid kapag breastfeed ๐Ÿ˜‰

  2. kuddos for all the information you shared. very informative indeed! sadly, 15 years ago, I discovered that i belong to the 1% of moms who didn’t have breastmilk. I really tried my best to breasfeed, but not enough milk. such a high respect for moms who take the time and exert effort to breastfeed their kids. truly a wonderful gift to their children

    1. Awww… so sorry to hear that. I wish I’d known this information sooner, though. But I am still glad to have learned from the talk. I hope this will be a big help to other moms out there ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I didn’t have to take meds, I was asked by my son’s first pedia to stop. But the other pedia said it should be ok. It was confusing. I guess it was the stress that made my milk supply decrease, though. Just imagine the savings we could have had if we continued breastfeeding. Formula milk is so expensive. ๐Ÿ˜€

  3. Yes to breastfeeding! Haha I really tied hard to breastfeed and now I’m having a hard time stopping. I love the closeness we feel with our babies through breastfeeding. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. I love to read breastfeeding stories. Maybe because I am one breastfeeding mom to my now 10-month old son. We also do complementary feeding but there are times he would prefer to drink milk from me than eat. i hope it is normal and ok.

  5. Breastfeeding was such a challenge for me. Good thing I overcame it, thanks to people like you who encouraged me to never give up. This a great post for first time mommies. Straight to the point and very informative. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Pregnant mums nowadays are so lucky; they have access to events like this. I was able to breastfeed my son for almost 3 years, but I sure hope I had access to talks like this one!

  7. I’m breastfeeding a 2 years and 1 month toddler and many people look at me like “meh” why did you not wean him yet. I tried, he won’t stop, and I don’t see a reason why I need to stop soon when I’m a WAHM. So I don’t care what they say! haha.

  8. This is super helpful! ๐Ÿ™‚ I was able to breastfeed my first till 1+ and my second till 2+. Breastmilk is really the best.

  9. I loooove this post! Very detailed. Will show this to my breastfeeding friends and officemates. Some of them are having a hard time kasi sa pag latch ni baby. This is a good read.

  10. Way to go to all breastfeeding moms! Im still breastfeeding my other twin at 2 yrs old and 5 months. Yung isa ayaw na. Mixed fed din sila. Pero gusto ko din sana magbreastfeed pa din yung isa coz mas madali syang mahawaan ng sakit. Breastfeeding is really good for our babies.

  11. Very informative post especially for new mums. ๐Ÿ™‚ I myself advocate breastfeeding because breast is best for babies for 2 years and beyond. ๐Ÿ™‚ Bunny and I is on our 18th month mark and sometimes I still struggle with my supply so I unli latch her to increase supply. ๐Ÿ™‚

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