Do you want to know how to get back to breastfeeding after exclusively pumping?
When it comes to feeding the baby, the raging debates about breastfeeding vs. pumping can be quite discouraging to a new mom just trying to figure things out. Some mothers prefer breastfeeding, while others want to pump, bottle feed, or combine these methods.
So, what happens if you started with one method, but you are now ready to try another? Is it possible to switch from one feeding method to another?
If you are wondering how to get back to breastfeeding after exclusively pumping, we have answers and some methods you can try.
Related: Does breast milk stain clothes?
Reasons for exclusively pumping
There are several reasons why a mother may choose to pump in the beginning exclusively. One major one is if you need to go back to work, where you’ll spend a significant amount of time away from your baby.
Since you won’t be around to breastfeed them, you can pump your breast milk for them to drink later from a bottle. Your baby might also have some trouble latching onto your nipple for some time after birth, so pumping is the next best option.
In addition, exclusively pumping increases your milk supply over time if you were having trouble producing any with a newborn. On the other hand, you can also pump when you have excess milk. It will help you avoid walking around with swollen and extremely painful breasts.
With the right kind of storage and safety standards, your baby can have readily available breast milk for weeks in advance.
How to get back to breastfeeding after exclusively pumping
While there are many benefits to exclusively pumping, you may find yourself missing the sensation of breastfeeding. Transitioning from one to the other is not that easy, however, but this is what you can try:
- Start slowly and build from there. If you randomly breastfeed your baby, you’ll just be causing yourself unnecessary pain. Instead, just ease into it by pumping less over some time before breastfeeding exclusively.
- You will need to get your baby used to breastfeeding. Since they are used to drinking from a bottle, they may not even know how to suck on a nipple. One thing you can do to help the baby used to breasts is to have as much skin-to-skin contact as possible. You can do this while you are both lying down. After some time, your baby should start rooting around for the nipple and latch on by themselves. You’ll know it’s a good latch when the whole nipple is inside the mouth, and your baby starts sucking the milk out.
- If you didn’t have one before, you need to get a nursing pillow. It will make the process of breastfeeding easier and more comfortable for you and your baby.
- You may notice that your milk supply is a bit less now that you’ve started breastfeeding. It is nothing to worry about as your body is just adjusting to your baby’s appetite.
- Breastfeeding is not an exact science, and you need to be patient if things don’t work out immediately. You won’t find a breastfeeding rhythm with your baby immediately, and that’s okay. While there are ways to make the experience better, always do what feels right for you and your baby. Even if that means exclusively breastfeeding when you’re around and pumping when you have to be away.
Regardless of what anyone says, think about how to get back to breastfeeding after exclusively pumping. The beauty about being a mother is that you can do what feels natural to you and your baby.
Related Post: How To Gain Weight While Breastfeeding