5 breastfeeding tips for new moms

Posted at 12/14/12 11:53 PM

MANILA, Philippines -- For most new moms, breastfeeding can be a laborious process, but the benefits that come with it easily outweigh the physical and emotional challenge.

File photo

On Friday's episode of radio dzMM's "Magandang Gabi Dok," Kapamilya journalist and new mom Nina Corpuz, along with pediatrician Dr. Estrella Olonan-Jusi, outlined the how-to's and advantages of breastfeeding.

Due to give birth in the coming weeks or months? Here's a quick manual on the ideal way to feed a new-born.

1. Educate yourself before giving birth

"Mas maganda kung natuturuan natin sila tungkol sa pagpapasuso during the time na sila ay nagbubuntis palang," Jusi said. "Para pagdating sa panganganak, hindi na sila mahihirapan kung paano ito gagawin."

Among the topics touched on in child birth classes for moms-to-be is breastfeeding, particularly the proper way of positioning and attaching the baby (detailed below).

2. Breastfeed to produce more milk

Corpuz cites the basics of economics -- supply and demand -- in producing breast milk. A new mom herself after giving birth in May this year,  the ABS-CBN journalist relates to the difficulty of having breast milk available for the baby.

Some moms, according to Corpuz, are overwhelmed by the stress and the challenge of producing breast milk.  "But it gets better," she said. "Pag tumigil ka, mawawala 'yung gatas. Kaunting tiis lang."

3. Position, attach baby properly

To properly feed a newborn, Jusi said the baby's body should be positioned straight, and is supported by the mother's arm. The baby and the mother should also be "tummy to tummy," such that the new-born's body, not just his/her head, faces the mom's.

For the attachment of the baby's "fish mouth" for feeding, Jusi advised to have the new-born latch not just on the nipple but a portion of the mom's areola. This is to avoid "nipple trauma" for the mother.

According to the pediatrician, it is ideal to have the baby's chin touch the mom's breast. Also, mothers should ensure the new-born's breathing through the nose is not obstructed.

4. Breastfeed exclusively for 6 months

"[Breast milk] contains all the nutrients that the baby needs in order to grow and develop. Kaya kahit tubig, hindi natin kailagan magbigay ng extra water, because breast milk itself contains enough water," Jusi said.

"Pag sinabi nating exclusive breastfeeding, talagang wala kang ibang ibibigay. Kahit multivitamins, pwedeng hindi ka magbigay for the first 6 months, nandoon na lahat 'yun," she added.

Accordint to Jusi, breast milk has antibodies that fight against bacteria. It is also easily digested.

5. Slowly introduce new food

Breastfeeding is advised up to 2 years of the baby's age, but complementary foods can be given after the period of exclusive breastfeeding.

"Doon na tayo nagbibigay ng tinatawag nating complementary feeding. Doon na tayo nagbibigay ng mga pagkain," Jusi said.

In addition to fruits and vegetables, "pwede tayong magbigay ng mga cereals and lugaw, and gradually ini-introduce natin 'yung ibang pagkain."