Breastfeeding Part Time Successfully

Breastfeeding is a mother’s best gift to her newborn even if she can only do it part time. During pregnancy, the breastfeeding mechanism is already at work, as hormonal changes take place to prepare the body to produce milk. Once a child is born, the breast immediately starts the milk production which is increased through prolonged suckling by the newborn. It is therefore important that the new mother begins breastfeeding as soon as she has recovered from the birthing process.

The first few weeks of breastfeeding can be a painful and tedious process as both the mother and baby adjust to heightened milk production and breastfeeding mechanisms. As milk production exceeds demands, the breast can become engorged, and filled with milk that the mother can express manually or using a handheld device. The milk can be stored for future feeds, reducing the number of times the baby latches on.

When the body undergoes repeated engorgement and expressing, it will fall into a natural body system to produce milk that can be stored and aid part time breastfeeding. Unfortunately, this process is not automatic with many mothers who lead a hectic and stress-filled working lifestyle before, during and after birth. The mother will need to prolong or increase the repetitions of the suckling process in the first few weeks to ensure sufficient milk flow.

Often, new mothers are ignorant of the milk production process and hence stop it by denying her child to suckle during to stress, postnatal blues or pain due to tender nipples. Hence the mother needs to persevere and encourage milk flow. Rubbing the nipple with milk before and after breastfeeding may reduce some pain. It is important that milk flow is maintained, otherwise it will stop completely when the mother decides to do it on a part time basis.

Before breastfeeding part time, the mother needs to select a time of the day when she can continue to let her child suckle. Even with artificial pumping, milk production may dwindle if suckling is not done over a few months. The transition depends very much on an individual basis. The new mother needs to monitor it carefully.

Another factor that the new mother must be acutely aware of is that her child’s demand for increased amounts of milk does not follow a linear pattern. Therefore the child will need more milk as the first few days and weeks progress. Eating certain nourishing food such as fish and lentils may increase milk flow, and allowing the child to suckle more certainly will. Time is therefore a precious commodity for any breastfeeding mother even on a part time basis.

There will come a time when milk production will dwindle or cease completely. The mother can ease the process and aid transition by adding formula to the warmed, stored breast milk, slowly increasing the proportion of milk powder to that of the breast milk. The child will therefore become used to powdered milk or other milk forms naturally and not refuse either. Other milk substitutes include soy milk, porridge water and even crushed soft biscuits when the child is reaching a year old.