Today we’re here to chat about “golden hour”—you may know this as the hour around dusk where the sunset hits you just right in photos; however, it’s also the first hour your baby is no longer your wombmate. Hormones and skin-to-skin set the stage for makin’ milk, but if those early moments don’t go as planned, you can still take breastfeeding in your own hands–literally. Just remember: milk out = more milk in. We’ll teach ya our quick tips and tricks to help you get started.
LATCH LATCH, BABY!
If you deliver vaginally and babe is healthy, they will be placed on your chest immediately for skin-to-skin. Natural instinct should kick in now—your baby should scoot right on over to the source. However if this does not happen, do not get discouraged! That’s why we’re here. If your baby needs help latching, you can take matters into your own hands. Your hands are your best tools, so you can direct your baby on exactly where to go, what to do, or hand express if you’re away from babe to get production going. Cliché, I know, but you were born for this.
GO WITH THE FLOW
Making plenty of milk doesn’t happen automatically! So again, take matters into your own hands (which hopefully will have a shiny new push present by now). The golden rule here is that the more you remove, the more you produce. Milk removal is essential in order to keep it flowin’! In this first ‘golden’ hour, and then every two to three hours over the next several days, you need to be expressing milk (by hand, babe’s mouth, or pumping) even if it’s not to feed. You can nurse as often as your baby is hungry; but in the first three days, you can never overfeed. If you’re nervous (bc duh), practice makes perfect! And don’t get discouraged when you only get a few drops in the beginning. Your babe’s stomach is teeny tiny, and we promise that stuff—aka colostrum—is gold.
Our last bit of advice is just to try and stay positive. Attitude is everything. Sit back, relax, get a comfy breastfeeding pillow, and let your body do its thang. Don’t lose hope if things don’t go as planned. Breastfeeding is a journey. Stay hydrated, try to sleep—or more realistically nap—as much as possible, and don’t forget to feed yourself! You got this.