If you’re planning on breastfeeding your baby good for you! Breastfeeding isn’t for everyone. It can be a very hard and long journey before everything clicks, but it is so so rewarding once you get there, and I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything.
There are some different tricks to get a proper latch and help your supply, but I’ll expand on that in a later breastfeeding tips post, for now I’ll cover 7 nursing essentials you’ll want to pick up before your baby comes, and then you can spend some time reading up on tips for breastfeeding.
7 Nursing Essentials
These 7 items are all things that I have used a ton of in my first 2 months of nursing, and I’m so happy I prepared and picked up everything before giving birth. I definitely recommend preparing as much as you can. You’ll have everything you need when the time comes which will give you peace of mind, and allow you to focus all of your post birth energy on your new little baby.
- Breastfeeding Pillow
- Receiving Blankets
- Matraea Nipple Cream
- Booby Boons
- Nursing Bra
- Nursing Top
One of my favourite gifts for baby and me was a nursing pillow. Breastfeeding is hard to get used to. There are so many different positions and your back and arms can get sore from holding baby. A breastfeeding pillow makes things simpler and more comfortable. I use mine so much that I have one for each floor of our house and at each of the in-laws’ houses.
When looking for a breastfeeding pillow you want something that is stuffed well and won’t go flat while you’re using it, forcing you to hunch forward. You’ll also want something that fits snuggly around your body so it doesn’t slip away while nursing. I really like my Jolly Jumper nursing pillow.It’s filled really well leaving baby lying at the exact right place for nursing, and it’s super convenient for baby to rest in a sitting position to allow him to be a little bit more independent.
You are going to use a ton of receiving blankets with your new bundle of joy! I had heard it lots before, but never knew just how much I would use them. Not only are they great for nursing by laying it down over your pillow to catch any spit up, used to wipe baby’s mouth, and tossed over your shoulder as a burp rag, but their also great for tons of other things when interacting with baby.
I found that many people gifted receiving blankets and other blankets, so I wouldn’t worry about stocking up until after your baby shower, but if you do have to stock up Amazon has some really cute packs of 7 for just under $20.
***If you’re like I was when I was pregnant, chances are you might be wondering the difference between swaddling blankets and receiving blankets. Swaddling blankets are generally thinner and made of materials like muslin. They’re used for wrapping baby up in a swaddle to help them feel cozy and tight like in the womb. Receiving blankets are generally thicker and made of materials like flannel. They’re used for a million different things.
Related Post: First Time Mom Birth Story
Matraea Nipple Cream
I’m not going to sugar coat it for you. Your nipples are going to get chapped and sore. Good news is that when using the right nipple cream they heal fast, and they get used to breastfeeding quickly. I highly recommend the Matraea nipple cream. It’s locally made on the island in Duncan out of a Matrea, a health center for mothers, and can be purchased at Bellies in Bloom.
I slathered my nipples in the stuff after every feeding session and only had chapped and bleeding nipples when baby started having a bad latch. Yes that sounds bad, and it did suck, but as soon as the latch was corrected, and with continued breastfeeding and slathering on nipple cream, my nips healed up within a weekend. By the end of the first month of nursing my nipples got used to it and I was able to ditch the cream.
Your body is producing an incredible amount of liquid gold for your precious little bundle of joy. It needs a lot of water to keep up your milk supply and ensure you’re still hydrated. I aim to drink 3 litres of water a day and it still doesn’t feel like it’s enough. If you struggle to drink enough water I recommend getting the Water Drink app I’ve talked about a bunch in previous posts, and you can also check out my 10 Tips to Help You Drink More Water.
If you’re struggling with your milk supply, lactation cookies are a great way to build it up. Not only do they help your milk supply, but they taste great too! Booby Boons have become my go to mama treat after I received a pack for Christmas. I always eat some about an hour or so before my evening pump and notice that I produce a bit more compared to when I don’t eat them.
My favourite flavour is the oatmeal raisin, but they also has 3 super tasty flavours being released late spring, and they all have some great added health benefits! #NotYourAverageCookie Make sure to check them out on Instagram so you know when the new flavours are released!
Related Post: 3rd Trimester Update
When breastfeeding your boobs grow and change so much, it’s crazy! TBH, right now I feel a bit of a dissociation with my boobs, they’ve changed so much they don’t seem like mine anymore. Nonetheless, growing breasts need new bras, and you can take advantage and make it a nice treat for yourself as well.
Good nursing bras are comfortable, give you good back support, and provide easy access to nurse in a pinch. Just because they’re nursing bras, it doesn’t mean they can’t be cute. Thyme Maternity has some great nursing bras with lace and all of the pretty details.
Nursing tops are a must if you’re going to be nursing in front of people and you don’t want to let it all hang out. Power to those mamas that are comfortable whipping a boob out to nurse in public, but that’s just not me. They’re also good to have if you don’t want to stretch out all of your tops. For their quality, Ripe, Boob, and Au Fait Mama. all available at Bellies in Bloom, have become favourites of mine for nursing wear. They’re great quality and I’m confident they’ll last for future pregnancies. Thyme Maternity also has some good basics for an affordable price.
Unless you have a top like Boob’s classic pull up style, when dressing for breastfeeding it’s all about the layers. I always layer a pull down style tank top underneath another top that I can easily pull up, or if I’m wearing a pull down style top I like to wear a scarf nursing cover for a little more coverage.
There ya have it, my 7 nursing essentials I recommend purchasing for your breastfeeding journey. I also recommend getting Baby D Drops, and probiotics like Bio Gaia. Breastfed babies don’t get enough vitamin D naturally, and the probiotics help their little digestive systems form. I’ve found Bio Gaia to be a real lifesaver for us in helping with Logan’s fussiness.