Those looking for breastfeeding support may not be aware that a mindfulness therapist in Putney could be what you are really looking for.
Breastfeeding support is so important in the early days of establishing breastfeeding to help you ensure you build up your supply and you produce the right amount for your babies.
Face-to-face support is crucial for helping to get the correct latch to make sure the breast is being drained effectively and the baby is getting enough.
All of this can prove stressful for new mothers, on top of the exhaustion associated with early motherhood and recovery from childbirth. Did you know that cortisol can have a deleterious effect on breastmilk production? This means it pays for women to be as relaxed as possible when trying to establish breastfeeding.
There are a number of ways this can be achieved:
· Making sure the mother is adequately supported
· Take over cooking duties
· Take over cleaning duties
· Allow the mother to sleep
· Minimise visits or keep them short
· Take over other baby tasks such as changing and dressing them.
Once all of this has been done however, some mothers may still be stressed. If that is the case then consider some mindfulness.
So, what is breastfeeding mindfulness?
Women who want to explore breastfeeding mindfully should consider the following:
Start by focussing on your breath. You need to make sure that you tap into your breath and take long, slow breaths in order to reduce cortisol, and boost oxytocin which helps with breastmilk production.
Consider how your baby feels against you. Are they using their hands to find your breast to help them feed. Where are their feet? Can you feel them under your arm? Are you holding their head? How does their hair feel against your hands.
Your body sensations
You may experience some unpleasant or unwelcome sensations while you are establishing breastfeeding. If you are feeling any pain in the nipples does it occur just at the beginning of the feed or go away with time? Consider that any initial let down pain is temporary and let it go.
Some women get tense and pain through their shoulders and hands. Focus on your body sensations in order to make sure you relax and don’t make any problems worse.
Also consider any feelings in your stomach or places where tension might appear. Feel them, acknowledge them and see if they reduce.
You have been waiting for nine months to enjoy your new baby’s smell and now is the time to lie back and enjoy it.
You will have been told to look out for breastfeeding cues from your baby and now is the time to do it. When they are feeing observe them and enjoy them. Also use this time to get to know them and observe any little habits they may have when feeding.
La Leche League, a breastfeeding support group recommends mindful breastfeeding to women who are finding establishing breastfeeding stressful or difficult. You can read about one woman’s experience on its website.