Common challenges breastfeeding mothers face
If you’re facing problems when attempting breastfeeding, you’re not alone.
According to the Health Promotion Board (HPB), common challenges faced by breastfeeding mothers two months after delivering their newborn include sore and cracked nipples, low milk supply and latching difficulties. For the majority of mothers who are six months past their delivery date, these problems are likely to dissipate. About 28% of mothers however, continue to experience problems with lactation six months after giving birth.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) and the American Academy of Paediatrics, (AAP) both recommend that babies be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of life. Any problems breastfeeding mothers experience may leave them feeling anxious and stressed about the welfare of the baby.
Remedies for common breastfeeding issues
Sometimes, breastfeeding mothers need a little help in dealing with issues with lactation.
For example, sore and cracked nipples could be a result of incorrect latch-on techniques, or poor positioning. Breastfeeding mothers are encouraged to avoid the sustained pressure from the baby’s gums or tongue by ensuring that their nipple is facing the back of the baby’s mouth.
Another frustrating problem breastfeeding mothers face is low milk supply. According to the Australian Breastfeeding Association, the surest and fastest way to increase milk supply is to breastfeed more. This is because the act of breastfeeding activates hormones responsible for stimulating milk-making tissues and their release.
When it comes to breastfeeding, it’s important to remember that although breastfeeding is natural, it is not always easy. As discussed in our previous article, many breastfeeding mothers and babies struggle with the process. Think of breastfeeding as any other skill, such as riding a bicycle or painting landscapes – the more you practice, the better you will become.
When to get help from a doctor
Many first-time mothers in Singapore find invaluable assistance by joining breastfeeding support groups, such as the Singapore Breastfeeding Mothers’ Group, which was set up in 1975. By tapping into the collective experience of other breastfeeding mothers, they are able to learn or improve on skills and techniques for effective breastfeeding.
However, if you’re facing persistent problems when breastfeeding, it’s best to seek help from a doctor, who can examine you and your newborn to determine what can be done. At Osler Health, we have supported many new mothers and can refer you to trusted lactation specialist if required.
Osler Health is here to help
At Osler Health, we believe in tailoring healthcare according to your needs.
We provide a safe and confidential space for first-time mothers and pregnant women. Our clinics at Raffles Hotel Arcade and Star Vista are conveniently located in both central and west Singapore and are easily accessible by car or public transportation (even if you have a buggie). We also have breastfeeding rooms in both clinics.
If you’re facing issues with breastfeeding, don’t hesitate to contact us via a phone call, or email. Our friendly reception staff will be happy to assist you in scheduling an appointment with one of our dedicated doctors.