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Ashley Georgakopoulos, IBCLC

How to Prepare for Breastfeeding

Before birthing your baby, a lot of preparation comes into play for new and experienced moms. Immediately we think of gathering supplies, getting a nursery set up, pediatrician and daycare interviews, birthing classes, and picking out a name. But what will a baby need to do the moment it is born? Eat.

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Why Did My Flange Size Change?

Part of preparing for pumping is to figure out your flange size. First, let's discuss tips and tricks to determine how sizing works and how the flange you start with can change over time. Tools, diagrams, lactation professionals, and blogs cover this topic (one of the most asked-about topics!). Yet, one thing that remains underrepresented is the emphasis on the need to resize as the journey continues. This is not to insinuate that every mom will change flange sizes, but rather to be mindful in case the need arises! Like milk flow, breast milk supply thresholds, and the subtle changes in the composition changes, the breasts will also change, fluctuate, swell, harden, soften, relax and become more malleable. In this article, we will discuss the common times resizing is needed, what to look for to have a good size, and why it's important.

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How to Integrate Hands-Free Pumping Into Your Breastfeeding Journey

One of the best feelings in the world is to teach a mother how they can reclaim their life and feel human again while still maintaining goals they have set for themselves regarding breastfeeding and providing breast milk to their baby. But unfortunately, society is under so much pressure to learn the art of breastfeeding and pumping, with the growing understanding of its health benefits. Yet, there’s still much left to yearn for support in helping them make that happen. As a result, pumping can feel like a hassle.

One of the many ways to meet our goals is to free up our hands. Something as simple as providing nourishment for ourselves as we feed our baby should not be undervalued! There are ways to breastfeed hands-free, with the help of a sling or a carrier. If we need to pump and maintain our milk supply, this can be done hands-free, too!

Any pump can accomplish pumping hands-free. There are many options, from silicone hand pumps, wearable, and wireless breast pumps, to electric breast pumps, including battery-powered ones. We are excited to share our top tips on effectively doing this.

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Breastfeeding and Weaning According to an IBCLC

Mothers may choose to wean for so many different reasons. First, it can be when teething begins, as it can be painful to endure if the baby bites before or after a feeding, health, or lifestyle need. You might want to finish your breastfeeding journey without justification, which is OK! Let's discuss all things weaning and comfort measures, regardless of the method or reason.

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Caffeine While Breastfeeding: How Much Is Safe?

Caffeine consumption is one of many practices mothers may have concerns about when deciding to breastfeed or provide breastmilk. What does safe consumption look like? With most things in nutrition, moderation is going to be key, caffeine consumption included! Common concerns with breastfeeding mothers and their caffeine intake range from how well your baby sleeps to how it affects the milk itself.

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How to Combine Breastfeeding and Pumping

Did you know you could both breastfeed and pump your breast milk? Is it necessary to do both? This greatly depends on your plans, your goals, and your situation. That’s right, as usual, this is another way breastfeeding is individualized! Let’s discuss how to “combination feed”, why you might do both, and ways to sustain this option.

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Does Breast Pumping Burn Calories?

Mom sitting in yoga pose with baby

The short answer to this is “yes!” but let’s get into why and how pumping breast milk burns calories, along with approximately how many are burned. Certain variables play into this, such as frequency of pumping sessions, amounts expressed, if pumping for one or multiples, and more.

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When and How to Use a Nipple Shield for Breastfeeding

Difficulty latching, pain, prematurity, and physical anomalies, such a severely inverted nipples or flat nipples are common reasons for utilizing a nipple shield for temporary relief and assistance.

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Tandem Breastfeeding: What Is It and Is It Beneficial?

"Tandem breastfeeding" refers to breastfeeding both both a new baby and an older child (who may also still be a baby, just from a separate pregnancy.) Mothers around the world feed their children of different ages, and can do so simultaneously. It's very much a personal decision, so let's discuss it in more depth so you can make an informed one!

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Overactive Letdown: What Is It and What Can You Do to Help?

The “Letdown Response” is slang for the term “Milk Ejection Reflex” (MER), which is the initial contraction of milk from the alveoli, from which the milk supply is stored prior to use. The grape-like clusters contract and squeeze milk down the milk ducts, or channels, when the body receives stimuli, such as nipple stimulation, baby crying, pumping, breast massage, etc. Read more on how overactive letdown works.

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