Breastfeeding Awareness Month: Go-to Guide for Nursing
Photo by Jordan Whitt
Did you know that August is National Breastfeeding Awareness Month? (Now you do!) And while we’re all pretty familiar with the idea that breastfeeding is natural and that (supposedly) evolution has prepared women to nurse easily, that’s not always the case, even with all of the information available.
2017’s theme—yes, there’s a theme— is Charting the Course Together and *technically* this means a focus on analyzing data and trends and what impact breastfeeding may have on a variety of health topics and initiatives. However, we think this takes on a different meaning, especially as it relates to parenthood and breastfeeding in particular. Nursing your baby can be frustrating, overwhelming, uncomfortable, and for some mamas, panic-inducing. But if we “chart our course together” and share what worked and what didn’t, or even a simple knowing nod, we can help one another out and knock this parenting thing out of the park.
So, in an effort to share some of our (and weeSpring users) tips and tricks on how to make breastfeeding a little easier, below are some of our favorite, trusted items to help you find your nursing groove.
Our Go-To Guide to (Hopefully!) Make Breastfeeding Easier
Cake Maternity Nursing Bras: Cake Maternity creates beautiful and functional maternity and nursing bras for women, by women. They’re thoughtfully designed to cover your every need and style preference. We especially love the Rock Candy Seamless bra which features removable foam pads for added shape and support, 6 hook-and-eye closure options to easily adjust to your ever-changing cup size, and is super soft and supportive. Not sure what to look for in a maternity or nursing bra? Check out their handy infographic to help you find the best fit and style.
Simple-Wishes Hands-Free Breastpump Bra: Any baby-related task that can be adequately labeled “hands-free” should be given a Nobel Prize. This is a must-have for anyone who’ll need to use a pump—it’s comfortable, adjustable, and allows moms to effectively multi-task while pumping (just ask the over 800 mamas who have raved about this on weeSpring). As one mama said, “Try holding your boobs for 15 minutes if you’re thinking about skipping this.”
Motherlove Herbal Nipple Cream: A 100% certified organic solution for the far-too-common issue of nipples that are sore and cracked from breastfeeding. ManyweeSpring moms prefer this super soft herbal salve to other thicker creams and love that it does triple duty as a cream for chapped skin and diaper rash, too.
My Breast Friend Nursing Pillow: This breastfeeding pillow is the number one pick among lactation consultants to help moms gets the hang of breastfeeding. It wraps all the way around the waist for optimal back support, helps to correct Mom’s posture while feeding, and won’t shift around. It’s wide enough for baby to lay comfortably and there’s a storage pocket for your water bottle or phone. Others note it’s wonderful for moms who’ve had a c-section. A word of caution from our mamas—some have a love-hate relationship with this pillow (as with most things parenting related, preferences are incredibly personal!), so see if you can test one out from a friend before buying.
Bamboobies Nursing Pads: Unfortunately, leakage is an all-too-common issue amongst nursing mothers. Luckily, Bamboobies ultra-soft nursing pads are made with a unique milk-proof backing that stops leaks. And their heart-shaped design makes them less visible through your shirt. weeSpring mamas love them for their eco-friendlieness (they’re washable!) and the fact that they don’t “try to rip your boobs off like the disposable ones when dried.”
Medela Harmony Pump: While most breastfeeding parents opt for a double-electric, this handy little manual pump can be a lifesaver and is affordable enough to buy in addition to your workhorse pump. It’s quiet, discreet, and fits easily in your regular handbag. One weeSpring editor used hers while in her airplane seat, with no one the wiser. It’s also helpful for quick relief if you get engorged and it can be used to relieve pressure to help baby to latch. Plus, because it isn’t electric, it can be used anywhere (even the shower, which is many moms go-to for treating clogged ducts).
Milk Stork: For many mamas who work away from home and need to travel, the question of pumping and traveling with breastmilk adds an additional layer of stress. Thankfully there are companies like Milk Stork, a breast milk delivery service that provides refrigerated, overnight milk shipping to your baby at home. No more pumping and dumping, dealing with confusing milk storage transit guidelines, or going overboard to create a super supply before you hit the road. While it is on the expensive side, you may want to investigate talking with your employer about covering the cost. Boston Scientific recently added Milk Stork services as a benefit to its employees and since the beginning of this year, Milk Stork has been used on 67 business trips, shipping nearly 50 gallons’ of breast milk home!