Make Your Free Breastfeeding Plan
I am a Virgo, planning flows through me and makes me feel in control. I meticulously searched every template for birth plans. I read all the books and made the best Birth Plan equipped for my home birth and just in-case hospital birth (which actually happened the second time around!)
Fast forward 10 years later and I am now a Lactation Consultant here to urge you, and help you plan and make a Breastfeeding Plan!
Breastfeeding is natural, why would I need a Breastfeeding Plan?
While breastfeeding is the biological norm, it is not always easy to get off to the right start. Most hospitals and birthing centers are now equipped with Lactation Consultants. There are about 600 hospitals in the U.S. that are currently a Baby Friendly Hospital. These hospitals have certain policies in place that ensure you are encouraged have the tools you need to breastfeed your baby and leave feeling successful. The staff and nurses are educated on breastfeeding and formula is considered a last resort.
This plan keeps everyone in the loop!
After you and your partner discuss the key things that are important to you, you can print off this plan and even have it scanned into your chart! This way everyone from your OBGYN or Midwife, the nurses, and even your pediatrician can be a part of your plan. You will want to print out a few to have for the birth setting, so pack a few in your hospital/birth bag!
I plan to Exclusively Breastfeed.
Having this at the top of your plan is important. The definition of exclusively breastfeeding means that your baby only receives breastmilk. No other liquids may be given, not even water. Sometimes, Infant Formula is medically indicated. Such as, high bilirubin (Jaundice,) Low Blood Sugar or infant weight loss (more than 10% of baby’s overall weight.) You, your baby’s Pediatrician and your Lactation Consultant should always discuss ways to supplement and what you should supplement with before making an informed decision. Check out these ways to alternatively supplement.
Skin to Skin
When baby is placed on your chest (or partner’s chest if you are unable,) it awakens all of baby’s instincts to nurse. It also regulates the baby’s heart rate, respiratory rate and keeps them the perfect temperature! Baby Friendly Hospitals allow this skin to skin time for a minimum of one hour. If baby is kept skin to skin often throughout the first few weeks, baby will have access to the breast and bring in a good milk supply. Remember, your milk supply is supply and demand! Additionally, all routine exams for baby can be done skin to skin.
Nothing but Booby!
Hold off on pacifiers, artificial nipples for at least four to six weeks. As long as breastfeeding is going well; no pain, weight gain and poop/pee output is adequate. Babies do suckle differently on a breast than an artificial nipple, so we don’t want to interfere with that perfect latch!
Ditch the “just in case” Formula
If breastfeeding is going well there is no need to bring home formula from the hospital or keep it in the cupboards just in case. Babies cluster feed, this can be mistaken for low milk supply. Reaching for your IBCLC’s phone number rather than a can of formula is your best bet to reaching your breastfeeding goals.
This last one I can't urge enough:
Meet with an IBCLC for a Prenatal Consult
International Board Certified Lactation Consultants are trained in helping you reach your breastfeeding goals. If you take a Prenatal Breastfeeding Class or meet with a LC one-on-one you are more likely to reach your goals. They can help you talk with your partner,family and providers about your plans and navigate your local hospitals policies and practices.
Grab your FREE BREASTFEEDING PLAN HERE
Looking for Breastfeeding Support? We offer Virtual, Home and Office Consults with an experienced IBCLC.