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Breastfeeding Myths vs Facts
Whether its the well meaning aunt, the otherwise trusted doctor, or seasoned-parent friend, there are so many breastfeeding myths that are often shared as fact to new and expecting mothers. This advice is usually given with the right intentions, but as a new parent, it can be hard to sort through myths, opinions and facts. We are fortunate to have an LC (Lactation Consultant) on staff as well as have a local IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant) on hand to help us with our new breastfeeding series.
Here are 6 common myths debunked by our very own lactation consultant, Sarah T.
Myth #1 Breastfeeding is easy and comes naturally to all mothers
Fact: Breastfeeding takes time and practice for both mothers and babies. Many mothers need support with positioning and proper latch. Trying different positions will help you figure out what works best for you and your baby.
Myth #2 You should avoid breastfeeding if you have a cold or illness
Fact: You should keep breastfeeding as normal. Your baby won’t catch the illness through your breastmilk. In fact your breastmilk will contain antibodies to reduce your baby's risk of getting the same bug!
Myth #3 Breastfeeding should be on a specific timed schedule
Fact: Your baby will want to eat as often as every one to three hours. Frequent feeding helps increase your milk supply and allow your baby to practice sucking and swallowing. During times of growth spurts, this time frame may change. This is normal!
Myth #4 Small breasts don’t produce a lot of milk
Fact: The size of your breast has nothing to do with milk production. The amount of milk produced is based on supply and demand.
Myth #5 Breast milk has no nutritional value after the age of one.
Fact: Regardless of age breastmilk provides plenty of nutritional benefits to babies, including antibodies, protein, calcium vitamins and fat.
Myth #6 Pumping output is indictive of what the baby takes from the breast at a feeding
Fact: Pumping output is NO indicator of your supply and does not tell the parent how much milk the baby drinks from the breast. Babies are much more efficient at the breast than any pump (even hospital grade). There are many factors that go in to successful pumping: correct flange size; best pump for your body and needs; correct level of suction; stress, hydration, and more! Some women collect more milk with a hand held pump or hand expression than a pump. Meeting with an LC or an IBCLC will help set you up for pumping success!
Were any of these myths shared with you? Did any of them surprise you? Do you have a breastfeeding question or a topic you would like more information on? We would love to help! Send us a note and we will include your question or topic on a future blog!
The HBG Squad