My child was born extremely fragile and all I was worried at that point of time was when will she look healthy? To make things worse, her jaundice was not getting cured, she would not latch and hence feeding her was a task, during our hospital stay, my mom and the nurse helped me to feed.
The lactation consultant visited us and told me that I have flat nipples and hence the baby is struggling to feed, the paediatrician told me you cannot let the baby cry because she will waste her energy and don't focus on latching right now just focus on feeding!
So on day 3, I bought a manual pump and it has became my best friend. I asked my hubby to buy manual pump because I knew this pumping thing will last only for week or 10 days and then we will be back to direct feeding.
But 10 days became a month, since my daughter's jaundice wasn't getting cured. My doctor asked me to focus on the feed and pee cycle and he also advised me not to start bottle feeding.
My Mother-in-law was strictly against this arrangement, as per her I was doing too much. By the time my daughter was one-month-old, I had a pumping schedule. I would pump every 2 hours, feed her and then would make her latch, because with pumping my nipples were no longer flat.
After Pihu's 45 day injection shot, I decided that I will not pump at all and feed her directly, I saw a drastic decrease in her pee count which meant she was not feeding properly, since she still had mild jaundice I rejected this idea of direct feeding and moved back to pumping.
By now, I had only two aims - cure jaundice and increase weight and both of these were possible only by regular feeding.
My constant trials of direct feeding would only lead to intense crying bouts. So, I gave up completely on the idea. Since, I had a schedule in place I would never run out of breast milk.
Trust me direct feeding is a boon, all you need is mother and baby, and exclusive pumping needs lot of energy.
Here, I am sharing some tips which might help you:
- Always ensure you have a schedule, the more milk you pump, the more your body will make. (I used to pump every 2-3 hours)
- Cleanliness is very important, always sterilize pump parts and clean your hands before you start pumping.
- Invest in a good pump.
- Ensure the vacuum is proper while you are pumping, else you won't be able to pump out enough milk.
- Pace feed your baby- make your baby sit with the support of your left hand and use the right hand to hold the bottle in such a way that minimum milk goes in the nipple and your child is neither over fed nor she gets lot of milk in her mouth which is difficult to gulp.
- Don't let the baby starve. If my breastmilk was not available, I would prepare 30 ml top feed to satisfy her immediate hunger pang and then pump milk for her.
- Always remember, you are like any lactating mother and it is just that your baby is being fed indirectly, so keep an eye on your diet too, have enough water and a rich diet.
- Keep trying and do not give up.
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