In 2016, Lorena Beltrán Villamil decided to create a support group for nursing mothers on Facebook, which today has more than 4,500 followers.
There in facebook, daily women from all regions of Colombia and the world share their concerns, and their doubts, and one by one they form a network based on the experience of motherhood. As a result of the reception that the group had and the number of people who followed it, Lorena became a lactation consultant to have more knowledge and thus continue helping more women. She answered The woman post the most frequently asked questions about breastfeeding
1. How long should breastfeeding last?
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that breastfeeding should be exclusive for the first six months of life; what this means is that the baby only drinks milk. Babies should not be given water, infusions, compotes, or teas unless they need some medication prescribed by the doctor.
Starting at 6 months, complementary foods are introduced that, as the word itself says, complement, but do not replace or eliminate human milk. Breast milk is the main food during the first year of life. Babies are considered infants for the first 2 years. After one year of life, breast milk contributes 40% to the baby’s nutrition: so breastfeeding is still essential
2. Is it wrong that my son wants boobs all the time?
This question is very important because we moms believe that breastfeeding is simply feeding the baby, and the truth is that it is not just feeding. The chest is an epidermal, emotional food; the baby that is in the breast is not because he is hungry all the time or because the mother does not produce milk, but because she is her mother, and because through the breast, the baby acquires everything that he had in the womb.
A baby is not born fully developed, so it has to continue simulating the habitat it came from to continue developing and growing well. This is called the exogestation theory which speaks of about nine more months of gestation outside the womb. When the baby leaves the womb, it is normal for him to seek the same sensation as the womb (constant contact, sound, food, and constant rhythm through rocking) and the best simulation of this space is the mother’s arms and chest, there he finds contact and constant food; also the sound because it is close to the heart and the rocking because in the arms it is rocked.
3. How to breastfeed correctly?
As such, there is no correct way to breastfeed. However, there is a technique that you should know and try to apply:
You have to take care of the technique in terms of the grip, the depth of the grip, how the baby opens his mouth, and all the amount of areola that enters his mouth, this determines that the baby can eat enough. Sometimes they give the lack of weight a lack of chest and many times it is that the baby was not attached well: he was not attached deeply. A baby that does not latch on deeply cannot extract the milk well and for that, it is necessary to promote an adequate posture of both the mother’s body and the baby’s.
The baby’s body should be very close to the mother’s body, fully in contact, facing the breast; it cannot be in a bottle position, which means that the belly faces the chest. In breastfeeding, to breastfeed the baby, the belly has to touch the mother’s body, it must be all in front, head straight facing forward, the abdomen touching the mother, hip aligned towards the mother. Everything towards the mother taking care that her chin and nose touch the mother’s chest.
4. What is free demand?
You have to understand that in breastfeeding there are no schedules. Free demand is free to demand: you give the baby milk whenever she asks for as long as she asks. When they talk to you about every two or three hours or about the time on one breast and then on another, we start talking about myths and things that don’t work with breastfeeding. Breastfeeding does not get along with schedules, numbers, or stopwatches. The chest must be available 24/7.
There will be babies who drink with specific hours and are super punctual and others not; in these cases, there is nothing abnormal or normal. It’s like with adults, everyone has a different appetite. Each baby comes with her appetite and cannot be guided by schedules.
5. My son suckles, but no milk comes out, what do I do?
First, you have to look at why it confirms or believes that milk is not coming out. The chest is not transparent, nor does it have the ounces marked. There is no way of knowing whether or not milk is coming out. Many women think that you should feel when milk comes out, and the truth is that you don’t feel it. Sometimes the baby can be heard swallowing, but there is no way of knowing how much milk is coming out.
Sometimes it is the lack of knowledge and confidence in the process that makes you think that milk is not coming out. The only way to know if a baby is getting enough to eat is by her weight, that she is gaining weight appropriately.