As a new mother, much of your time is spent feeding, changing, and soothing your new bundle of joy. And while focusing on your little one is crucial, it’s just as important to care for yourself — especially if you’ll be breastfeeding. As beneficial as breastfeeding can be to you and your baby, it can also be painful, tiring, isolating, and downright exhausting.
If you’re a breastfeeding mother who’s in need of some serious self-care, these expert tips can help. Read on to explore three simple self-care practices for a happier and healthier mind and body while breastfeeding.
1. Get Plenty of Restful Sleep
Now that your bundle of love has arrived, sleep may seem like a thing of the past. However, sleep is just as important now that you’re a nursing mother. If you’re deprived of sleep, you may struggle to produce milk for your little one — and you may begin to feel hopeless, irritable, and depleted of energy. Plus, sleep is essential for learning, absorbing, and recalling information; stabilizing mood; and reducing your risk of developing conditions such as heart disease, depression, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
If your little one is waking up several times throughout the night and you’re struggling to get a decent night’s rest, guidance always helps. The Sleepytime Consultant offers Prenatal and Newborn packages for babies up to three months of age, as well as Baby Sleepytime Packages for babies up to 23 months. Kendra can help your little one develop healthy sleep habits early on, which will be hugely beneficial to you and your baby.
In addition to working with a certified sleep consultant, there are a few other things you can do to get more sleep while breastfeeding. These include:
- Looking for some help around the house so you can nap while your baby sleeps during the day.
- Placing a cot or co-sleeper next to your bed to eliminate trips to and from the baby’s nursery.
- Trying a safe sleep aid like chamomile tea or warm milk if you’re having trouble falling asleep.
- Regularly pumping breast milk so you can sleep while someone else feeds the baby.
Quality shut-eye is vital while breastfeeding as sleep deprivation could negatively affect your physical, mental, and emotional health and even increase your risk of getting into a traffic collision or other types of accidents. As such, it’s important to sleep whenever and wherever possible — even if you only have time for a 30-minute power nap on the couch.
2. Stay Comfortable, Yet Stylish
Wearing comfortable clothing is a must while breastfeeding, but that doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice style and settle for something frumpy and unflattering. Instead, look for stylish yet comfortable leggings, pajamas, and tank tops that have been designed specifically for pregnant and postpartum bodies. Many breastfeeding mothers struggle with body image concerns, but the right clothing pieces can help you to feel more comfortable and confident in your skin postpartum.
3. Turning Feedings and Pumpings Into “Me Time”
According to one mom, just 12 months of breastfeeding amounts to about 1,825 hours of feedings and 4,475 individual breastfeeding sessions. So why not make the most of this downtime and turn feedings and pumpings into opportunities for self-care?
A few simple ways to practice self-care during feedings and pumpings include:
- Reading a book or magazine.
- Listening to a podcast, audiobook, or calming music playlist.
- Watching a movie, television show, or documentary.
- Meditating and practicing mindfulness.
- Journaling, coloring, or doodling.
Moreover, a few top-rated breastfeeding products can help to simplify feedings and pumpings and create a more relaxing experience for you and your baby. A nursing pillow is just one example, but some other must-have products include lanolin cream and nursing pads.
As you can see, self-care for breastfeeding mothers can be as simple as getting quality sleep, dressing comfortably yet stylishly, and making the most out of breastfeeding and pumping sessions. The important thing is that you’re taking the time to care for your postpartum mind, body, and spirit. And if you and your baby are sleep-deprived, get help for you and the little one to sleep through the night. Contact The Sleepytime Consultant to book a free evaluation. email@example.com; 814-883-6058
Bio from blogger: Leslie Campos hopes to provide relief and tips for other busy parents through her site Wellparents.com. Parents can find a variety of information from stress-busters to exercise ideas to healthy eating tips.