A lot of times first time moms think delivery of the baby is the toughest part of the journey in becoming a mom . Sorry to burst your bubble it is just the beginning. Taking care of a baby as a newbie is not easy at all. My main aim of opening this thread is just to pass across detailed information based on research and my own experience as a mom of 3. I will go through topics like breastfeeding, immunization, episiotomy care and any other topic that a lot of ftm have questions about. I will start with breastfeeding.
My mom is a nurse and midwife and an exclusive breastfeeding advocate, right from when I was pregnant she had been ringing it in my ears that I must do exclusive and I decided to give it a go. I did exclusive breastfeeding for my 3 kids . I breastfed my first for 10 months in total , exclusively for 6months and started giving formula from six months. My 2nd never had formula he was breastfed for 2 and a half years, at 6 months we went staright to food and his cereals were mixed with breastmilk. I could do this because I was almost a full time housewife. My work hours were very limited. My 3rd was breastfed for 19months in total, 6 months exclusive and formula at 6 months plus. The first was the hardest and luckily my mom was with me and helped to encourage and show me what to do .
Breastmilk is the best food for babies . Before your baby is born your body is already preparing to nourish your baby . The very first thing your body produces as soon as your baby is born is colostrum which is very important to the well being of your baby. This is because it contains antibodies that will help prevent your baby from catching viruses or diseases. As soon as possible after your baby is born put the baby to your breast .
I must warn ftms breastfeeding is painful and it takes a lot of patience to establish milk supply, also getting the correct breastfeeding position takes practice and it is best to put the baby to breast every two hours to help your milk supply come in. Babies are usually okay with just colostrum for about 24 hours after birth and their stomachs are so small that about a tablespoon of colostrum or breast milk is okay at every feeding. Do not start to fret because proper breastmilk for a ftm may take 24 to 48 hrs or even more to properly come in. But if you are worried and feel like the baby is really hungry please buy formula and give baby with cup and spoon. This advice on cup and spoon is for moms that want to breastfeed exclusively.
This is to prevent nipple confusion some babies find it easier to drink from a bottle than to suck the breast and once you give them bottle they refuse sucking the breast.
Some moms say their babies do not get full with breastmilk. Breastmilk production is based on demand and supply. The more your baby sucks the more you produce. If it seems like the baby is not full put him or her on the breast more and your supply will definitely increase to match your baby ‘s need. For you to be able to meet up with exclusive breastfeeding you must eat well and be properly hydrated. Drink a lot of water, tea and watered down pap. For each meal take a big mug of watered down pap, then your main meal and a bottle of water. You may not have appetite but you just have to try so your breastmilk will flow.
Breastmilk is the best for the following reasons
1.Your body adjust the consistency and constituents of breastmilk to suit your baby at every point in time. If it is a hot day the body waters down the milk (which is why they say do not give babies water for the first 6 months). It also adjusts to meet the nutrient requirements based on your babys age
2.It is the cheaper and more hygienic option and does not require any preparation beforehand. Formula is expensive and needs hot water, bottles etc. By the time I had my 3rd kid I carry just my handbag no baby bag . Anywhere I am just breastfeed my baby without carrying too many items. Feeding bottles are also the number 1 culprit for stooling and infections in babies due to improper washing
3 Breastfed babies are relatively healthy. My kids are quite healthy particularly the one I breastfed till he was 2 plus. My kids never stooled excessively for 1 day, even when they have the occasional cold or fever it usually subsided in good time.
4 It creates a bond between baby and mom. The kid I breastfed the longest is my person o. Takes my side in all issues, we are actually very close and I believe that bond is as a result of the amount of time we spent breastfeeding.
On a final note when you baby is ill breastmilk is the best for him or her. This is because the bacteria in your babies saliva passes into your breast prompting your body to produce antibodies that will be passed to your baby via breastmilk to help fight whatever illness your baby is battling with
Formula is close to breastmilk but it does not have all the nutrients that are contained in breastmilk so I would encourage ftms to try and breastfeed their babies even if its just for a week or a month you do not have to do exclusive for 6 months if you don’t want to. If you are unable to breastfeed at all for whatever reason please do not feel bad or feel pressured formula is good and your baby will still be healthy. the most important thing is for baby to be fed . Any questions on breastfeeding are welcome will try to respond promptly.