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Mommy & Baby: Feeding

 by: Kirsten Hawkins

If you are a mom who intends to breastfeed her baby, start as soon as practical after the baby is born. Some of this will depend on the hospital’s procedures with newborns; there are hospitals which test a newborn, often returning him to you after several hours time has elapsed; others who deliver via caesarian will have to be in post-op for several hours.

Your milk will not be “in” immediately; typically this takes 3-5 days after birth. But your baby will receive nutritionally superior colostrum, which contains many antibodies and helps him develop a healthy immune system. I suggest you limit your baby’s nursing to 7-8 minutes per side before your milk comes in—you will achieve nothing more than sore, cracked nipples if you let him suck longer than that. This is how long it should take a healthy infant to draw the colostrum out of your breast.

Once your milk comes in, it is important to stimulate each breast during nursing times; 15-20 minutes on each side is sufficient for your child to empty your breast and to stimulate your glands for further milk production. Some babies are more efficient nursers than others; if you have a “rester” or a baby who takes longer than 20 minutes to empty your breast, let him nurse until he’s done.   (continued...)

Mommy & Baby: Feeding
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About The Author

Kirsten Hawkins is a baby & parenting expert specializing new mothers and single parent issues. Visit for more information on how to raising healthy, happy children.