Breastfeeding is a beautiful, natural way to provide amazing nutrition and bond with your baby. It can also be the source of so much frustration, pain, and disappointment for new moms. If there was one thing that intimidated me about becoming a new mom, it was breastfeeding. There are no classes, no breathing methods to practice for when the baby takes that first latch, it’s simply a trial and error undertaking for you and your baby. There are so many factors. How much will you produce? How will your baby do at latching? Will your baby have any digestive or development issues? So many questions that you won’t know the answers to until your sweet little bundle of joy arrives.
That’s why I’m sharing my Top 5 Breastfeeding Accessories with you. These are all things that I found helpful throughout my combined total of 3 years breastfeeding my two little ones. From pumping for week-long trips, battling mastitis twice and low production, these 5 things helped along the ups and downs of my nursing journey.
It goes without saying that your first few weeks of breastfeeding are the hardest for most first-time moms. Your entire body is recovering from birth, you’re operating on little sleep and you’re dealing with swollen, possibly cracked, nipples and breasts. That’s where this first product comes in handy. These packs can be stored in the freezer to help with engorgement pain. Or the packs can be heated to help with plugged ducts or heaven forbid, mastitis. It’s also designed to help with pumping for a quicker letdown and shorten your pumping session. I personally liked that they were smaller and easier to conceal in your bra than say, a bag of peas or a heating pad.
The last thing a new nursing mama needs when your nips are cracked and super sensitive are rough, disposable nursing pads that move around and can even get stuck to you. Been there, done that, and then switched to washable organic cotton nursing pads! Why spend money on boxes of nursing pads when you can buy one box, wash them, and reuse them for years. Plus they are super soft on those delicate ta-tas and helpful to the environment.
When it comes to breastmilk, less is not more. You want to save every possible drop of that liquid gold and make the most out of every feeding. That’s where the Milk Saver comes in handy. Putting one of these on is not an extra step, and it can be done while nursing your little one. You simply place it in your nursing bra on whatever side you aren’t nursing on for that feeding. Then the milk that is normally wasted and thrown away in a nursing pad is caught in the milk saver. That’s 1-4 ounces of milk saved every nursing session! For the first few weeks, I used this for my extra bottles for my husband to feed my baby and never had to use a pump.
This was the one investment I made when I had my first little guy. In a few months, I’ll be using it for baby number 3 and it still works perfectly. If you plan on having anyone else feed your baby and you want to get it done as fast and painless as possible, buy an electric double breast pump. I loved that this one could be plugged into an outlet at home, or you could use a battery pack option for on the go pumping. Pumping is what saved my sanity and helped me nurse as long as I did. It supplied moments for me to have a break, take a nap, go on a date, and let someone else handle the feeding. It’s been worth every penny. Be sure to check with your insurance company to see if a breast pump is covered.