By Julia Sullivan
Almost all women don’t have a problem with producing enough milk to breast feed. The ideal way to make sure that your baby is getting enough milk is to be sure that he’s well positioned, attached to the breast, and feed him as often as he gets hungry.
Some mom’s that are breast feeding will stop before they want to, simply because they don’t think they have enough breast milk.
There are signs that might make you believe your baby isn’t getting enough milk. If your baby seems hungry or unsettled after feeding, or if he wants to feed often with short pauses between feedings, you may think he isn’t getting enough milk – which are often times not the case.
There are however, two reliable signs that let you know your baby isn’t getting enough milk. If your baby has poor or really slow weight gain, or is passing small amounts of concentrated urine, he’s not getting enough milk.
All babies will lose weight within the first few days after birth. Babies are born with supplies of fat and fluids, which will help them keep going for the first several days.
Once your baby regains birth weight, he should begin putting on around 200g for the first four months or so. To get back to their birth weight, it normally takes a few weeks.
If the weight gain for your baby seems to be slow, don’t hesitate to ask your doctor or nurse to observe you breast feeding. This way, they can make sure that your technique is right and if they think your baby is breast feeding often enough.
To help you with your breast feeding, here are some ways that you can increase your supply of milk: 1. Be sure that your baby is positioned correctly and attached to your breast. 2. Let your baby feed for as long and often as he wants. 3. If you feel that your baby isn’t breast feeding enough, offer him more breast feeds. 4. During each breast feed, make sure you feed from both breasts. 5. If your baby has been using a dummy, make sure you stop him. 6. Some babies may be sleepy and reluctant to feed, which may be the cause of problems with milk supply.
By following the above tips, you’ll do your part in making sure you have enough milk when it comes time to breast feed. If you are uncertain or have other questions, be sure to ask your doctor, as he can answer any type of question you may have.
Flu Protection For Your Baby
By Julia Sullivan
It’s that time of year again: flu season. Each year, millions of people hunker down in the fall to prepare for the annual onset of influenza outbreaks. With the season comes an onslaught of visits to, at best, pediatricians’ offices and, at worst, hospital emergency departments by worried parents and their ailing children. Now that you’ve got a newborn, you want to be prepared.
So how do you keep your new baby healthy this winter?
While you cannot inoculate your baby, there are steps you can take to keep him healthy during flu season – many of them common sense.
What is the flu?
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, the flu is a contagious respiratory ailment caused by a group of viruses known as influenza. It strikes an average of five to 20 percent of the U.S. population each year, causing symptoms that range from fever, headache, dry cough, sore throat, runny nose, and muscle aches to nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Complications associated with the illness include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration, and worsening of chronic medical conditions.
Young children, the elderly, and people with chronic health conditions are at particular risk for serious flu-related complications.
How do I avoid getting the flu?
The CDC recommends getting a flu shot as the number one way to avoid getting the flu. If possible, get a flu shot in October or November, although you can still be vaccinated into December.
Parents, siblings, and caretakers of young children should be vaccinated. The American Academy of Pediatrics revised its recommendation in 2006 to include flu shots for children as young as six months and up to age five years. The CDC also recommends that pregnant women be vaccinated. Studies suggest that maternal immunization may help prevent the flu in young infants.
While your newborn is too young to safely receive the vaccine, and whether you were or weren’t vaccinated while pregnant, he can’t catch the flu, if he does not come into contact with the virus.
Other simple preventatives include covering your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, washing your hands with soap and water – often, avoiding close contact with those who are sick, and keeping your baby out of crowded public places. The flu is spread through contact with the respiratory droplets of an infect person, primarily from coughing and sneezing, so be alert and act accordingly.
What to do if you or your baby get sick?
If you think you have the flu, minimize contact with your baby as much as possible. Drink plenty of fluids and rest. Take fever-reducing medications, as necessary, and contact your physician if your condition worsens. If your baby becomes ill, ensure that he continues to nurse often to prevent dehydration. Call your pediatrician immediately if your baby has trouble breathing, is not feeding adequately, seems less responsive than usual, or his rectal temperature rises above 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit.
Influenza is a serious concern, especially for parents of newborns. But simple, common sense strategies can help you keep your baby healthy throughout the flu season.