Essentials for a Breastfeeding Mom

Rupal Asodaria Breastfeeding Mom Breastfeeding Product

One last thing, something that can't be purchased - the support of a board certified lactation consultant. Do some research and find a good one. The information and guidance a

Okay, so you made it through 9 months of pregnancy. You welcomed your little bundle into the world. I hope you didn't think that was the hard part! Your hospital stay feels like a blur and everything you learned in all of the parenting and breastfeeding classes you took well it's somewhere. How many wet diapers is the baby supposed to have? Does she really need to eat every 2 hours?! How long does cluster feeding last? Being a new mom is HARD. You endure the same physical stress as if you had just run a marathon, but rather than coming home to relax and recover you are now responsible for keeping another tiny human alive. And even if your significant other is eager to help, if you're breastfeeding, it's all you for a while. Here are just a few things that may make your life a little easier in those early days.

NursElet Nursing Bracelet

I could barely remember my own name half the time, let alone which side I was supposed start my daughter's next nursing session on. The NursElet Nursing Bracelet may not help you remember the last time you took a shower, but it does take away the burden of having to remember which side is up next. The soft cotton bracelet fastens quickly and easily with a little Velcro. It's more than just a reminder bracelet, too! Use it while you're nursing to keep your shirt up off your baby's face. After a few days of trying to tuck your shirt up under your chin, you'll understand why this feature is so important (and your neck and back will thank you)! Plus, if you pump, you can also use it to hold your shirt up then, too. For a simple little bracelet, it sure does offer a lot of helpful functions for a new, breastfeeding mom.

There are a ton of patterns to choose from, check them out here:

Nursing Pillow

A special pillow just for breastfeeding? Can't I just use some couch pillows? The simple answer here is no. I mean sure, you could use them, but there's a reason these nursing pillows were invented. In order to get a good latch, your baby needs to be positioned appropriately. Breastfeeding is all about the latch, especially in the beginning! The last thing you want is to be fumbling with a bunch of stacked up pillows while your little nursling is trying to have lunch. The Boppy is pretty popular, but is lacking some important features for breastfeeding. I found that it didn't support my baby's entire body and wasn't tall enough to position her well. I know a lot of moms who swear by the My Breast Friend pillow, but I found it a bit too bulky. I really love my Dr. Brown's Gia Nursing Pillow. It is soft and flexible like the Boppy, but angled and wrapped around my body better. I felt like it offered the best of both worlds. The whole pillow is machine washable (seriously, don't buy anything that isn't machine washable after you have kids) and zipper-free slipcovers are also available. Don't forget to bring a nursing pillow to the hospital with you!!!

Check out the Gia Nursing Pillow here:

Spectra S1 Breast Pump

Unless you plan for your baby to be by your side for the entire duration of your breastfeeding journey, you'll need to learn how to use a breast pump. Even if you are fortunate enough to be able to stay home with your baby, you're going to want a night out once in a while. I don't know about you, but for me this was one of the worst parts about breastfeeding. I loved the bond it created between my daughter and I, and I've never regretted my decision to breastfeed. It is in fact one of the things I am most proud of. But I returned to work after 8 weeks, so pumping was inevitable for me. Let's get one thing out of the way, there is nothing magical or glamorous about using a breast pump. But it can be tolerable with the right one.

There are an overwhelming amount of pumps to choose from. (Most insurances cover the cost of a pump - be sure to look into this in advance while you're still pregnant. I was able to order mine in the second trimester so I had plenty of time to figure it out before my daughter arrived). There are manual pumps, single electric, double electric, battery-powered, closed system vs open system. How the heck do you go about narrowing it down? Easy, go with Spectra :) This brand is definitely gaining some ground here in the US. Spectra offers hospital-strength pumps without sacrificing any comfort for pumping moms. The S1 has a rechargeable battery, making it so easy to pump anywhere. Because what do you do when you're traveling? Stuck in traffic? What if the power goes out? I tried a few others before finally ordering my Spectra, and what a difference. I produce more milk in less time and it's a lot more gentle. There is a digital, backlit display (because who has time to track a pumping session), a built-in light (because pumping in the dark is HARD) and my favorite feature - the ability to control both the speed and suction for a truly customizable pumping experience.

Check out all of the other amazing features Spectra pumps offer here:

Sarah Wells Breast Pump Bag

Okay, so you settled on your pump. Now you're all ready to go back to work. You look like you're heading off to a weekend getaway with all of those bags! I did this for a few months before I decided enough was enough. Having to remember and carry my pump, my purse, my laptop, my lunch. I needed to be more efficient (and less likely to forget something). Plus my pump bag was really lacking some style may have mastered the art of dry shampoo as a new mom, but I couldn't get around this blah black bag that carried my little torture device. Sarah Wells bags are not only pretty, but so functional. I use the Kelly because it has optional backpack straps - these really come in handy some days when my hands are otherwise occupied, you know, by my tiny human. There is space for my pump (yes, even my slightly larger Spectra pump), pump parts, a small cooler and ice pack, my wallet, keys, laptop, lunch and a few other essentials. The pump pocket is insulated and can double as a cooler if needed. When I'm venturing out with my family, sometimes I'll unload the pumping gear and use it as a diaper bag - because my regular diaper bag doesn't covert to a backpack and it's really nice to be hands-free.

See the beauty for yourself here:

Milky Mama Lactation Treats

You may or may not struggle with supply issues. If you're fortunate to produce enough milk for your baby, it still doesn't hurt to have a reason to eat a cookie or a brownie every day! Those extra calories have to come from somewhere. Milky Mama Treats are all natural and packed with ingredients known to aid in supporting a healthy milk supply. Use them every day or just when you need a little boost!

Check out all of the delicious treats here:

NursElet Nursing Scarf

Okay, here's another one from NursElet. This nursing scarf earned major brownie points with me because it's something I can use even after I'm done breastfeeding. But back to the more important features - it is extra-long and offers full coverage so even the most 'enthusiastic' little nurslings won't leave you open and exposed. I am fairly comfortable nursing in public, but as my daughter got a little older she became very easily distracted while breastfeeding. I needed a cover that wouldn't make her feel claustrophobic, something that would allow me to maintain eye contact and adjust her position as needed. The NursElet scarf met all of those needs for me and more. Unlike the cape-style covers, the NursElet scarf allows you to leave one arm out so you have more freedom to move while breastfeeding. And the bonus is that it can also act as a high chair or shopping cart cover or a car seat cover. And moms, like I said before, you don't have to pack this up when you're done breastfeeding. You can continue to wear it as an infinity scarf even after your breastfeeding journey ends!

See all of the beautiful patterns available here:

You'll find your groove, and I PROMISE it gets easier. Just because breastfeeding is 'natural' does not mean it is easy! But some of these may make it a bit more manageable! One last thing, something that can't be purchased - the support of a board certified lactation consultant. Do some research and find a good one. The information and guidance a lactation consultant can provide is invaluable and so important to a new nursing mom.

Misty is a mother of a beautiful one year young baby. She is a great advocate of breastfeeding and lives with her family in New York. @mistyann13

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