The Breastfeeding Journey
While every new mom has a beautiful vision of happily breastfeeding her newborn baby, most do not always realize that breastfeeding may take some time and work. All moms and babies are different and that can lead to an easy experience, a difficult one, or a painful one. This is why it is important for new moms to not only seek out support and education on the topic of breastfeeding, but to also equip themselves with the tools needed for their breastfeeding journey such as; breast pumps offered at no charge for military moms through Tricare. This is something that Baby Pavilion can assist moms with to make the process simple.
Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post written on behalf of Baby Pavilion, a TRICARE breast pump provider. All opinions are entirely my own.
Breastfeeding Problems encountered by new moms
- Unsure of proper latching – It wasn’t until talking with an expert that I learned about the many different positions to hold a baby during breastfeeding and what a true latch from the baby should look and feel like. According to The Office on Women’s Health, one sign of a good latch is when, “the latch feels comfortable to you and does not hurt or pinch.”
- Baby does not latch – When a baby does not latch, moms tend to freak out thinking that something must be wrong with their breasts or milk supply. There are many different reasons ranging from “sleepiness after birth” to medical conditions such as a “birth injury or disability” that might prevent a baby from latching on right away according to Donna Murray, RN, BSN of Very Well Family.
- Low milk supply – For various medical and personal reasons, a mother may have a low milk supply. Fear not as there are many ways to help increase your supply before you throw in the towel on breastfeeding your baby. A few natural ways of increasing your milk given by Nadia Sabri in her article 9 Natural Ways to Boost Your Milk Supply are; “using a breast pump, staying hydrated, modifying your diet, and eating lactation cookies.”
- Painful Experience – Due to the pain associated with breastfeeding, many moms decide against it. Working on a proper latch can assist with the pain level, as well as taking care of your breasts in between feedings.
Top 5 Breastfeeding Tips for New Moms
- Stay calm – Babies can sense your emotions. After all, they have been living inside you for nine months already so they are super in tune with your feelings. Remaining calm will also keep your baby calm. Make sure that you create those peaceful spaces in your home for breastfeeding.
- Prepare your body-Avoiding certain foods, alcohol, and limiting fragrant lotions are a few ways to prepare your body for breastfeeding. Another way is to equip yourself with a breast pump that is covered by your insurance at no charge. Baby Pavilion can help you with this task and make the process super simple.
- Try different positions-If your baby is not latching in one position, try out other breastfeeding positions to see if your baby prefers one over another. There are many to choose from according to What to Expect such as; “the football hold, cradle hold, crossover hold, laid-back position, and side-lying position.” Remember to breastfeed from a different breast each time so you do not drain out one breast over another.
- Seek Support-It is okay to ask for help. For military moms, Tricare covers an array of support through lactation consultants and breastfeeding counseling with a provider in the network. It is always a good idea to speak with a professional about your concerns and struggles with breastfeeding.
- Take care of your breasts-There has never been a better time than now for a little self-care starting with your breasts. One way to do that is to alternate the use of hot and cold compresses for sore breasts. There are also creams that help to sooth sore nipples and breasts and a multitude of nursing products that can help.
How Breastfeeding Benefits a Mom
- Loss of weight-When breastfeeding, the uterus contracts and allows for mom to lose some of the baby weight gained during pregnancy. According to WebMD “It releases the hormone oxytocin, which helps your uterus return to its pre-pregnancy size and may reduce uterine bleeding after birth.”
- Lowers the risk of breast cancer-It has been proven through extensive research that a woman’s risk for breast cancer decreases if she is able to breastfeed at a minimum of 6 months. Those who breastfeed longer than 6 months are at an even lower risk of developing breast cancer.
- Bonding with your baby-Breastfeeding allows moms and their babies to develop a special type of bond. The closeness that comes with the act of breastfeeding helps with the baby’s attachment to mom and gives your baby a sense of security.
- Financial Benefits-Economically speaking, breastfeeding can help you save tons of money that would otherwise be spent on formula.
Breast pumps for Breastfeeding
If you plan on breastfeeding, you’ll likely use a breast pump at some point. The Good Housekeeping Institute recommends a pump for every type of mom. You can always reach out to a Lactation consultant for breastfeeding instructions & to help you choose the right breast pumps.
Types of breast pumps
There are four main types of breast pumps:
- Double-electric breast pumps: These electric models let you pump both breasts at once. Electric pumps are stronger and more powerful so they can be used to help establish, maintain, and increase your milk supply.
- Single-electric breast pumps: These models costs less than a double-electric pump but you will only be able to pump one breast at a time, which can take longer.
- Battery-operated breast pumps: These models are run through batteries or a cord plugged into an electrical outlet to power a small motorized pump that creates suction to extract milk from the breasts. They are portable.
- Manual breast pumps: These are lightweight, portable and inexpensive. Manual pumps are operated by hand.
Benefits of Electric Breast Pumps
- Helps with lactation: Using breast pumps can help in maintaining & increasing your supply of breast milk. Some moms find it helpful to use breast pumps every 2 or 3 days every couple of weeks to “super charge” their milk supply.
- Excess Milk Supply: Mothers with excess milk ejection can express their milk and feed their baby later with the expressed milk.
- Early Delivery: Women with risk of early delivery will require electric pump since a low-weight preterm baby may be too weak to suckle.
- Benefit for Working Mom: Moms who have to work after their delivery can express their milk for the baby and have someone else to feed your baby during the day.
- Take Breaks: Breastfeeding can be stressful & there are times you need a break. Pumping can allow for a partner or family member to feed the baby when you get some rest and a much needed break.
- Medical conditions: You can always resort to pumping if your baby is premature, due to a breast surgery, or a health issue
Tricare Insurance covers free breast pumps & supplies
Did you know that Tricare covers a breast pump for each pregnancy? There are many different models to choose from and Baby Pavilion can assist expectant mothers with this process. They cover Breast pumps and breast pump accessories for up to thirty six months after your baby is born. Policy holders are approved for one breast pump per pregnancy as well as breastfeeding counseling with an in network provider.
A little about Baby Pavilion.
Baby Pavilion is accredited by The Compliance Team. They specialize in helping moms in their breastfeeding journey through their quality products and support.
Baby Pavilion follows a simplified process helping you to qualify for a free breast pump.
It’s a 3 step process:
Step 1: Get a prescription.
If you don’t have one, don’t worry! They’ve got a template prescription form that you can download, print, and have it signed by your physician.
Step 2: Choose your breast pump.
Baby Pavilion has top brands that you can choose from.
Step 3: Fill out the order form.
Fill out the New Patient Order Form and upload your prescription.
They will review and process your order within 24 business hours after your submission.
Breast milk is one of the most important gifts you can give to your baby. Although there is an art to breastfeeding that does not mean that you cannot be successful at it. With practice, education, equipment, and support, you can give your baby a healthy start. Breastfeeding doesn’t just benefit your baby, but it has multiple benefits for you too.
© Strength 4 Spouses LLC, 2019.
Murray, D, RN, BSN. (2019, July 26). When Your Baby Won’t Breastfeed. Retrieved from https://www.verywellfamily.com/breast-refusal-431907
Office on Women’s Health (n.d.). Getting a Good Latch. Retrieved from https://www.womenshealth.gov/breastfeeding/learning-breastfeed/getting-good-latch
Sabri, N. (n.d.). 9 Natural Ways to Boost Your Milk Supply. Retrieved from https://www.mother.ly/life/natural-ways-to-boost-milk-supply
Tricare. (n.d.) Breastfeeding Counseling. Retrieved from https://www.tricare.mil/CoveredServices/IsItCovered/BreastfeedingCounseling
Tricare. (2019, April 9). Tricare Updates Coverage for Breastfeeding Supplies. Retrieved from https://tricare.mil/coveredservices/benefitupdates/archives/4_9_19_TRICARE-Updates-Coverage-for-Breastfeeding-Supplies
WebMD. (n.d.). Breastfeeding Overview. Retrieved from https://www.webmd.com/parenting/baby/nursing-basics#1
What to Expect. (2018, 9 September). Breastfeeding Positions and Tips for Mom and Baby. Retrieved from https://www.whattoexpect.com/first-year/breastfeeding/positions/
World Cancer Research Fund. (n.d.) Lactation (breastfeeding): Lactation and the risk of cancer. Retrieved from https://www.wcrf.org/dietandcancer/exposures/lactation-breastfeeding
Hi there. My name is Wendi Iacobello. I have been an Army wife for three and a half years and part of military life for five and a half years. Nine years of my career, prior to military life, was spent as an adult educator. I have a Master of Arts in Educational Media, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Early Childhood Education. My teaching career includes; Middle and High School Special Education, Correctional Education, and Community College Instruction in Early Childhood Education, Compensatory Ed, as well as Adult Basic Education. Currently, I am a blogger, freelance writer, aqua cycling instructor, a virtual assistant, and an avid volunteer. My husband and I are expecting our first child this fall. I am extremely passionate about helping others find their inner strength by sharing my experiences, insight, resources, and inspirational stories on this blog; Strength4Spouses.