Breastfeeding after C-section

Tips about Breastfeeding after C-section

The number of C-section or Cesarean Section delivery are much higher than the vaginal delivery rate in most of the countries which increases the responsibility of the new mother as now she has to take special care of herself along with her newborn. This can cause some difficulties in breastfeeding as well, however, this issue can be dealt with some tips about breastfeeding after C-section.

The moms who plan for breastfeeding should already stay prepared irrespective of their mindset and necessary and vital things for breastfeeding task no matter what type of delivery they ultimately have to give.

In many cases C-section is not preplanned it happens suddenly on the basis of special circumstances needs. Under such a situation, it becomes very traumatic for the new mother to tackle this new situation which she never expected.

As you have recently undergone surgery and IV and other instruments remain plugged in your body so it’s not that easy to move your body the way you feel comfortable for holding your baby or for breastfeeding.

Here the responsibilities of yours and your caregivers increase. However, if you will already stay aware of some crucial techniques which are safe and effective for comfortable breastfeeding by a C-section mother then your path will be much easier.

In spite of different challenges you can go through this journey in a much healthier way if you remain already aware that what you should avoid and what you should definitely do in order to breastfeed your baby for his or her healthy growth.

Effect of C-Section on Breast Feeding and Milk Supply

/>Before starting the tips and techniques for easy and comfortable breastfeeding after a C-section, it’s better that you understand the effect of C-section on your milk supply as well as breastfeeding task so that you can prepare yourself beforehand and face them with courage and confidence.

The Production of Breast Milk can be Delayed Due to C-Section

C-section can delay the normal production of milk as it may take some time to reach milk towards your breast ducts for the breastfeeding. On the other hand, women who have normal vaginal delivery they don’t have to face such issues and they can start feeding their baby instantly.

In many cases of cesarean delivery mother and baby are kept separated for some time after the baby birth in such condition the mother doesn’t get a chance to start the breastfeeding instantly. This is another reason which can delay the production of milk.

The Type of Anesthesia Used in the Process can Affect Breastfeeding

The anesthesia which is given to the pregnant women for avoiding the pain caused by the surgery procedure affects the breastfeeding and milk supply. Women who are given general anesthesia for the surgery keep them sleepy for some time even after the delivery and even her baby too.

Once the effect of this anesthesia started to diminish and wear off completely and the mother gets her consciousness back then and only she can breastfeed. Hence it causes delay than the normal vaginal baby birth where the recovery happens instantly.

Women who are given spinal or epidural anesthesia during C-section are usually able to breastfeed only just after their shifting from the operating room to recovery room for the patients.

Pain Relief Medications can Make Baby Sleepy

The pain and discomfort that remains in the body even after the completion of c-section are very difficult to deal with own self. This requires the necessity of taking pain medications to ease the pain and discomfort caused by the surgery.

However, this pain medication can interfere with your breastfeeding process as a possibility exists that some of the essences of this medicine will pass to your baby through breastfeeding which may make him or her sleepy. Hence the baby will not be able to breastfeed due to sleepiness.

This can delay the normal breastfeeding procedure. Though these medications are completely safe and won’t affect the health of your newborn any way still its sleepiness effect which meant to work on you and only for protecting you against the surgery pain make your baby sleep too and delay the breastfeeding process.

The Emotional Trauma Caused by C-section can affect Breastfeeding

The cases where the surgery procedure is quite difficult or traumatic or if the event of surgery was sudden or unplanned then it can affect the emotions of the new mother.

The sense of loss and sadness may persist for longer duration and takes some time to heal those emotional and physical pain resulting in it affects your plan and desire for breastfeeding.

Under such situation acceptance of your condition can only help you in dealing with the feelings that are sabotaging you to breastfeed your baby actively.

C-section can Affect Your Body Posture Leading Uncomfortable Breastfeeding

The incision area causes an immense amount of pain which persists for the next few days in the same intensity. Similarly, the uterus contraction for getting back to its normal sizing develops too much pain which can affect your breastfeeding work.

This after surgery pain restricts your body posture hence, it is quite difficult to sit or lie in a suitable and comfortable body posture to hold and breastfeed the baby. This after pain effect of C-section makes the breasting an uncomfortable and unpleasing experience.

7 Tips about Breastfeeding after C-section 

The below-mentioned tips and tricks will make your breastfeeding task after a C-section delivery easier and comfortable one.

Choose Your Clothing Wisely

It is very crucial that you wear only clothing which is a comfortable one. The clothes which cannot restrict your movement, in fact, can make it easier for you to move freely as per your wish and comfort zone are good for you.

Clothes that can let you breastfeed easily and allow the skin to skin contact with your child is good for this particular situation. Avoid those clothing which can rub your incision area as it can irritate it and even can cause pain. This would be possible with light cotton, loose fittings clothes.

You can do this shopping even before your delivery or if it is not done before then you can ask your partner to do that for you. You can easily get clothes specialized for postpartum mothers especially clothes wearable after C-section such as postpartum undergarments, nursing bras, high waist leggings, gowns, and pajamas.

This comfortable wearing allows you to do easy adjustments to turn towards most suitable postures to breastfeed your baby easily. Also if you stay ready with these comfortable clothes pre-hand then no matter what will be your delivery type you can remain confident and tension free.

Take the Help of Pillows

Keep so many pillows around you no matter whether you are breastfeeding in the hospital or at your home because it will help you in positioning your body in the most comfortable mode for the easy breastfeed without pain or discomfort.

You can buy a nursing pillow for you which are specially meant for the postpartum mothers only. However, if it is not there then you can even use normal pillows as well for ensuring the best possible body postures for feeding your newborn.

Keep pillows behind your neck, back, underarms, around the belly to prevent stress from your incision sites and even one under your baby to get him closer to you for easy breastfeeding work.

The nurses and lactation consultants at the hospital can guide you better like how you can place pillows around your different body parts to attain the most comfortable posture for comfortable breastfeeding.

Try to Breastfeed at Earliest Possible Time and Too Frequently

As long as the delay will happen in breastfeeding the risk of late milk production will increase that much. So to avoid this risk it is crucial that you start feeding your baby at the earliest possible time and feed him too frequently without waiting much.

As per one research report breastfeeding just within 2 hours of delivery works very positively as it can stimulate the milk production rate hence you can feed your baby without any scarcity of breast milk.

C-section delivery affects the milk production rate many ways which issue doesn’t exist with the moms with vaginal delivery. However, this difficulty can cope up if you started feeding your baby as soon as you get conscious, with the help of nurses and caregivers.

Similarly feeding your baby on a frequent basis can also help you in increasing your milk volume. Feed your baby too often at least for 10 to 12 times within 24 hours. Early and frequent breastfeeding is important even though the skin to skin had not happened immediately.

If your baby is not near you or kept separated for more than 12 hours then to stimulate your milk production you can do breast pumping and save your milk in a container which you can feed your baby later on when he will come near you. This will initiate the milk production and will not cause any delay due to the gapping period caused by temporary separation from your newborn.

Skin-to-Skin After Delivery is Important

Skin to skin is a proven technique for stimulating breastfeeding and creating a strong and faster bond between the newborn and mother. For this, you can tell your doctor and nurses before the surgery itself that you want skin-to-skin contact with your baby so place him or her near you just after birth.

The first hour of birth is considered as a golden hour in which skin-to-skin with your newborn can do wonders for your child health such as stabilizing their heart rate, regulating their body temperature, and maintaining the blood glucose level along with initiating breastfeeding.

It helps you in keeping your baby healthy along with taking care of your health as well.  However in the cases where the mother health is not in a god condition who can offer skin to skin contact to the newborn then, in such condition either father of the baby or any other close relative should be asked to hold the baby for skin-to-skin touch or contact.

Nurse Your baby in Recovery

Nursing your baby as soon as you recover from your anesthesia is important to create a strong bond with your newborn as well as for stimulating breastfeeding or milk production.

During your recovery process, it will be quite difficult for you to hold your baby easily and even pain in the body may affect your enthusiasm for feeding your baby. So it is essential that you take help of your partner or midwife. They will help you in positioning your baby and make him closer to your breast for feeding task.

As faster as you will start nursing and as much frequent you will be in your breastfeeding work chances of increasing milk volume will increase even though you have undergone a C-section delivery. This will create a strong nursing relationship with your newborn.

Don’t Avoid Your Pain Level

Pain is quite an obvious incident when you go through a major abdominal surgery such as C-section so you need not to avoid it. Take all the prescribed medications to reduce your pain level and lower it to the manageable level.

Otherwise, if you will keep on suffering from heavy pain then it can impact badly to your breastfeeding as well as newborn care tasks. The pain medications given during the recovery time are mostly safe and no way it affects your baby’s health.

Also if you have any confusion regarding these medications you can discuss this with your healthcare team and ask for the best option which will be most safer one for comfortable breastfeeding work.

Ask for Help When You Need So

Whenever you feel the necessity to have support and help of someone ask it freely without feeling shy or confused. In the recovery process doing everything by own self is not possible and even must not be tried to do everything alone as it can impact your incision and recovery speed.

Get your partner’s help for holding your baby if your hands are still numb and not recovered yet. Ask the help from the midwife and take suggestion from the lactation consultation regarding the best ways for feeding your newborn and other possible tips for better care for your newborn.

Even if you are discharged from the hospital then also take necessary help from your partner and family members while feeding your baby and other support whenever the necessity arises.

Drink enough water as feeding your baby can make you dehydrate moreover for increasing milk volume also it is important that you drink enough amount of water.

We hope the above-mentioned tips about breastfeeding after C-section have cleared many of your queries and issues. Do follow them for enhancing your postpartum experience along with ensuing best care and health of your newborn.

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