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Are You Having Difficulties with Breastfeeding? Or Maybe this is Your First Time Attempting to Breastfeed?
Breastfeeding is so easy, right? Wrong! Breastfeeding is a skill you have to practice. And just when you think you have it all figured out, a new challenge erupts.
I have been successfully breastfeeding my son Owen for 13 months and counting. And I can definitely tell you it hasn’t always been easy. While I didn’t have too many problems over the past year, I did have to overcome the obstacles that caused me to give up breastfeeding my daughter 5 years ago.
Some of the most common breastfeeding issues are:
- Painful Latching – this is mostly due to inexperience or if your baby has a tongue-tie or lip-tie.
- Mastitis – plugged duct or cracked nipple can turn into a breast infection that will need antibiotics to treat.
- Baby Biting – Yep! Even though they have teeth, later on, they still need to eat.
- Engorgement – When the breasts are full and you need to wake that beautiful sleeping baby to get relief.
- Low Milk Supply – When you aren’t producing enough milk for your baby for one reason or another.
Going back five years ago, I had just had my daughter Aubrey and had no idea how to breastfeed. No one in my family or my husband’s family had breastfed, so I had to rely on the staff at the hospital where I delivered her to teach me the proper techniques. I breastfed Aubrey for the first five days of her life but was having lots of nipple pain and my milk still hadn’t come in.
As an exhausted and overwhelmed new mother, I made the hard decision to fix her a bottle of formula. After giving her that bottle, I wasn’t able to breastfeed her again. At first, I was okay with that. But, later I really missed breastfeeding. Now, I’m not saying that formula feeding is bad or wrong in any way. Personally, I’m thankful for having the formula to nourish my daughter when I didn’t know how.
Later when Aubrey grew older, we found out that she had a lip tie and a tongue tie. After doing some research, we discovered that this could be one reason breastfeeding was so difficult and painful.
“A tongue-tie is a short, piece of tissue that is connected from the tip of the tongue to the bottom of the mouth. Tongue-ties can affect many things like eating, speaking, and breastfeeding.”
“An upper lip-tie is where a piece of skin under the upper lip is short or thick and is attached too tightly to the upper gum. It can restrict movement of the upper lip. This can also cause problems when breastfeeding.”
Fast forward to one year ago when my son, Owen was born. We found out he also had a lip-tie and tongue-tie. We were referred to an ENT(ear, nose, and throat specialist) to have a procedure done on his tongue. It only took fifteen minutes and he was so much better afterward. He was able to breastfeed and suck on a pacifier without any more issues.
So sometimes the journey through breastfeeding is difficult, and everyone’s roadmap looks different, but the most important thing is to keep at it. Like I said it is absolutely NOT easy.
Here is my friend Kristin breastfeeding her third son Jasper. They have been breastfeeding for 17 months and still going strong.
So tell me below in the comments – did you have any mishaps in your breastfeeding journey? Are you a breastfeeding mom? I love to get feedback from my readers!