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3 Ways to Handle the Stress of Nursing
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3 Ways to Handle the Stress of Nursing

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For some mothers, nursing is a magical experience rife with intense mother/baby bonding and some dedicated time to relax. For others, it is a stressful endeavor filled with painful letdowns, latching difficulties and clogged ducts.

If you are one of those mothers who struggles with breastfeeding and finds herself stressing out over the processes, then the three tips listed below are for you. Best of luck to both you and your baby.

Three ways to handle the stress of nursing:

Get friendly with hot compresses

First of all, let’s talk about the physical stress of nursing. Nursing for the first time is a completely new experience for a new mother’s body, and it is rarely a comfortable one at first. New mothers have to deal with the pain that comes with a new latch, the discomfort of engorgement, and the all-too-common clogged ducts. A little bit of pain is to be expected when it comes to the adjustment to breastfeeding.  A hot compress or heating pad can be a life saver. A warm shower can work wonders (be prepared to sheild your nipples with your hands) and remind yourself that this pain is temporary. Within a few days, you will be feeling better and you and your baby will be breastfeeding like a pro!

Identify and lean on a support network

Breastfeeding can be an intensely personal experience. Oftentimes body image issues, health concerns, and anxiety over failure as a mother (with some exhaustion layered in) is all wrapped up into this single issue. It can be a lot for someone to take on alone, and yet talking about it can seem like the scariest thing of all. As a new mother, the best thing you can do for yourself is to find a few people that you feel comfortable talking with. Lactation consultants are also a magical tool! When you need to, lean on them for support. Trust that all breastfeeding moms have been there - share your thoughts and emotions with them. Sometimes, talking about our issues is the biggest step we can take towards solving them, so make sure to surround yourself with a few good people that you can talk to.

 

Have a plan for breastfeeding on the go

A lot of mothers experience stress over breastfeeding out in public away from home. For some, the issue is exposure. For others, comfort and ease is the main concern. Regardless of what specifically is stressing you out about breastfeeding on the go, the best thing you can do to stem that anxiety is to have a plan for how to handle public or uncomfortable situations. For mothers who feel self conscious being exposed, make sure you always have a cover handy. For mothers who struggle with positioning, bring along a nursing pillow. The goal is to make breastfeeding on the go as easy as it can be, and part of making the experience easy is addressing mom’s concerns.

breastfeeding coverup