I had successfully breastfed three babies before I truly learned the wrath of mastitis. I can still remember my grandmother telling me about "milk fever" when I told her I planned to breastfeed. She told me how she had never been so sick in her life. Back in those days when a woman got mastitis she was encouraged to quit breastfeeding. Her mother bound her breasts with an Ace bandage and that was the end of her breastfeeding journey. Thankfully, there are other ways to manage mastitis now. Causes of Mastitis I was struck with mastitis when my baby was only four weeks old. Mastitis is most likely to occur within the first few weeks … [Read more...]
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Disclaimer: The information in this post is for educational purposes only. I am not a doctor. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. None of the opinions are meant to diagnose or treat any disease or illness. You should always consult your healthcare provider.
Right after you have a baby, the last thing you feel like doing (or should be doing) is getting up to exercise. Fortunately, if you breastfeed, your body is willing to do some of the work for you. Breastfeeding is hard work. Many women want to know, "How many calories do you burn breastfeeding?" How Many Calories Do You Burn Breastfeeding? Although the amount varies for each woman, the average is around 500 calories a day. The number depends on how frequently you're nursing, whether you're supplementing with formula, and how much milk your body produces. While burning 500 calories when breastfeeding sounds like a lot, it's important … [Read more...]
So let's clear one thing up first mamas: your baby can't be exactly allergic to your milk. Your milk is made especially for them! However, there are things within your milk or things about a baby's health that can cause "allergies" or issues with their ability to happily digest your milk. Symptoms of a food intolerance while breastfeeding can be tricky to judge because these symptoms can also be symptoms of other issues. A food intolerance that your baby may have is simply fixed by dietary changes on your part. However, this can be frustrating and exhausting at times. Quite frequently, mothers may study baby's poop just a … [Read more...]
When my second child was born, my husband had to go back to work immediately. Despite the fact that prepackaged snacks are not the healthiest (since they are often higher in sugar, sodium, fat, and additives, such as MSG, artificial colors, sulfites), I still bought prepackaged breastfeeding snacks I could quickly grab and eat while nursing my son. I bought prepackaged food so that I could quickly grab something to eat when my husband and mother-in-law were not around. Principles I used in choosing my prepackaged breastfeeding snacks were: Pick nutrient-dense foods. Choose foods that required little to no preparation. Two of the … [Read more...]
When building up your breast milk freezer storage stash, you may be wondering just how you are going to organize all of those baggies of breast milk. If you don't have some sort of system, you will end up with frozen bags that slide all over your freezer. You may even lose some as they fall down behind your freezer shelves. It would be awful to think you have less breast milk stored than you actually do! While you can purchase storage containers specifically made for storing and organizing your breast milk in an upright position, you can also get creative and use items you already have to store your breast milk in the storage … [Read more...]
We conceived our first baby four months before we meant to. Obviously, four months won't make much of a difference in the scope of our lives, but it did throw us into a bit of an adventure 8.5 years ago! My husband was in graduate school and working two jobs. I had an entry-level job with an entry-level paycheck. Neither of us had insurance that covered pregnancy, and we DID have quite a bit of debt in the form of student loans and a car payment. We'd been married a year, and we had been tracking our fertility for 9 months to avoid pregnancy until we had more stable finances. We took a chance one month - and that chance's name is now … [Read more...]
Whether you pump exclusively or are an occasional pumper, if you store your breast milk in the freezer you need to know how to warm it up before you give it to your baby. Remember, when you breastfeed your baby, the milk is the same temperature as your body, so your baby may refuse bottled breast milk if it is too cold. On the other hand, you want to make sure the breast milk isn't too hot or you could harm your baby. Warming breast milk from the freezer is a pretty straight forward process. Warming Breast Milk from the Freezer Storing Your Breast Milk in the Freezer First, let's take a minute to review proper breast milk … [Read more...]
It is no surprise that breastfeeding is sometimes a difficult and frustrating journey. Despite what some might say, breastfeeding doesn't come easy. As a general rule, once a new mother gets past the 6 weeks mark things can be smooth sailing. However, some moms find themselves revisiting the idea of weaning at 4 months. Four months is a common breastfeeding hurdle. With the right information you can prepare for what's to come and rest assured you and your baby can get past this. Why You Might Consider Weaning at 4 Months, and What You Should Know The 4 Month Sleep Regression It is no secret that as humans we need sleep to … [Read more...]
Conception and child spacing are frustrations for nearly every woman I know, regardless of where they are in their journey toward (or away from) motherhood. I'm so thankful that coming across the idea of "ecological breastfeeding" a decade ago dispelled some of the anxiety of my childbearing years! When I became fed up with hormonal contraceptives and decided to track my cycles and use Fertility Awareness instead, my brain immediately calculated for the most extreme scenario. Roughly 24 years of fertility left, with a baby born every two years = 12 BABIES! Oh my! That's assuming I had no multiples, miscarriages, or children born … [Read more...]
Our American culture is definitely not one which is friendly to postpartum mothers. After birth, mothers need lots of time to rest, sleep, cuddle and nurse their new babies, and just generally rest from the work of giving birth. Particularly if the birth was via cesarean, rest is vital to the healing process! We sometimes expect new mothers to be up running errands within a day or two of giving birth or leaving the hospital. But the risks of getting "up and around" too quickly are very costly, and this is the perfect time to snuggle up with your baby and get to know him or her! Inadequate rest after birth has been linked with the … [Read more...]