Breastfeeding after Cesarean
Breastfeeding after a cesarean birth can bring up a whole host of new challenges when it comes to breastfeeding.
From possible infant mother separation to difficulty finding a comfortable position to feed in to delayed milk coming in.
There are a few things to consider if you are expecting your baby by cesarean birth and would like to breastfeed.
✔️Consider antenatal expression (I have a whole highlight on this on my Instagram page) a fantastic skill for any new mum to have under their belt and a little safety measure in case baby is separated from you or blood sugars become unstable at any point. Avoiding the need for infant formula.
✔️Breastfeed as soon as possible after delivery.
Try to breastfeed as soon as you are alert enough to hold your baby, while you are being stitched is possible in some hospitals or in the recovery room afterwards.
Makes it easy for him to breastfeed when he is ready by orientating him to the breast
Helps you learn your baby’s feeding cues.
Calms your baby and keeps him warm.
Tuck a blanket over both of you to keep warm.
A Cesarean birth increases your risk of separation from your baby. Your partner can step in to help here. Research has shown that babies benefit from skin-to-skin contact on another’s chest when they can’t be with mum—they are calmer and cry less.
✔️ Finding a comfortable breastfeeding position can be a worry for many as you try avoid any pressure on your incision site. Try the laid back feeding positions and the rugby/football hold. In a side lying position you might find it helpful to place a rolled up blanket or towel over your incision site in case your baby kicks.
✔️If for some reason you are separated from your baby begin hand expression as soon as possible. If baby hasn't gone to the breast within the first 6 hours you should begin pumping using a hospital grade double pump.