Myriam Panard, breastfeeding consultant, has been supporting future and young parents in their breastfeeding projects for more than 15 years. Based on this experience, Myriam Panard has come up with 7 keys to help you breastfeed successfully.
It is important to help mothers become independent, active and confident in their breastfeeding before they arrive at the maternity ward:
- Every woman is biologically programmed to breastfeed her baby
- Every baby naturally expects to be at the breast
First key: Be determined and trust yourself
Be determined, aware … Your decision must be informed and motivated. Self-confidence is essential to the success of your breastfeeding project. Knowing about the benefits of breast milk will also help you in your approach. Feel free to ask any questions you may have before your baby arrives: meet other mums and talk to them.
Be prepared to overcome obstacles and if you meet any complications, don’t hesitate to ask for advice. You can also call on a lactation professional in case of problems. Don’t let discouragement set in during this period of breastfeeding when you are feeling fragile.
Second key: Discover the joy of skin-to-skin magic
If at all possible, the baby should be placed skin-to-skin against the mother’s body after delivery. After birth, skin-to-skin contact is the best way for the baby to come into the world. The mother’s (or father’s) body is the newborn’s natural habitat.
Skin-to-skin contact has multiple benefits for the baby. It reduces stress, regulates temperature, heart rate, breathing and blood sugar levels. Finally, it contributes to the bacterial colonization of its skin flora.
Skin-to-skin contact also stimulates breastfeeding through the secretion of oxytocin.
Third key: Adopt a comfortable position
Find the position that allows optimal breastfeeding. There are hundreds of positions adapted to the circumstances, the mother’s morphology and the baby’s comfort. Each mother, according to her feelings, will adopt the one that best suits her and her baby. The most important thing is to adopt the most comfortable position for you and your baby.
Fourth key: Follow the baby’s signs and not the clock …
Each mother will learn to observe her baby and detect the signs that he or she wants to suck (eye, lip, tongue and head movements, agitation, hands in mouth, screaming and crying).
Don’t impose feeding timetables on your baby: each mother-child couple has its own rhythm.
The more the breasts are “emptied”, the faster they fill up!
Fifth key: Avoid the dummy or bottle
The use of the dummy during the breastfeeding period can disrupt the baby’s suckling at the breast. It is preferable to avoid the bottle and use a lactation aid device. Once lactation is well established, you can introduce the bottle, preferably with your own milk.
Sixth key: Learn about breast massage
Breast massage is essential and should be part of the mother’s preparation before birth. By preventing build-up, it promotes a rapid and less painful rise in milk production. Manually expressing milk is a technique that all future mothers should know.
Seventh key: Ask for help – feeling supported is essential
Your partner has a fundamental role in breastfeeding. He creates a calm atmosphere and limits visits.
Discussion and sharing of experiences are valuable.
Breastfeeding professionals can help calm your concerns and find appropriate solutions. Feel free to confide in them.
- Breastfeeding is first and foremost a learning process. It’s natural. It’s like dancing: the first steps are hesitant.
- But with good advice and practice, it becomes a pleasant, rewarding and emotionally rich activity.
Explore the site You will find lots of tips and information on breastfeeding.