Tools of the breastfeeding trade!
When most think of tools of nursing babies, they think of pillows, bras and nipple shields. I think more of skills moms can gain to help them along their journey. I'm a fan of things money can't buy.
These tools are things we can do with our own hands. This of course assumes moms are taught these things during prenatal breastfeeding classes or during lactation consults during hospital stays or visits with LC's.
Breast massage is a great tool to access breast fullness and to drain well during feeds and pumps. Massage should always be done gently. There are many methods from circular motions with finger tips to kneading with knuckles, even breast shaking can be useful.
Breast compression is also a wonderful way to drain well and can be used for plugged ducts and or feeding.
My personal favorite though is hand expression. Hand expression can assist with so many situations. For instance,I'm a fan of showing moms they have colostrum in the early days as confidence can be low during that time. Seeing milk makes believing in the process of nursing easier. Hand expression helps moms to understand how babies remove milk form the breast. When fingers are placed about a inch away from the nipple and are across from each other, milk can be expressed easily by using pressure against the breast and compressing finger and thumb together. The challenge is while I can make it look simple, the honest truth is it takes practice. When a person gets proficient at this it can be a super useful tool. You can find countless YouTube videos or med.stanford.edu/newborns, hand expression milk is in the breastfeeding portion.
As always, if you're interested in meeting up or talking with me, please contact me through Facebook, email or my cell. Love to you all! Mom to Mom Lactation Services, June Myers!!
419-366-2493, firstname.lastname@example.org, Mom to Mom Lactation on Facebook.