Feeding Adopted Babies
Not only is breast feeding an adopted baby easy, the chances are
that you will produce a large amount of milk. It isn't complicated
to do, although it is different than breast feeding a baby you have
been pregnant with for 9 months.
Breast feeding and milk
There are two objectives involved in breast feeding an adopted baby.
The first is getting your baby to breast feed, and the other is
producing enough breast milk.
There is more to breast feeding than just milk, which is why many
mothers are happy to feed without expecting to produce milk in the
way the baby needs. It's the closeness and the bond breast feeding
provides that many mothers desire.
Taking the breast
Even though many feel the early introduction of bottles may
interfere with breast feeding, the early introduction of artificial
nipples can interfere a great deal. The sooner you can get the baby
to the breast after birth, the better things will be.
Babies will however, require the flow from the breast in order to
stay attached and continue to suck, especially if they are used to
getting flow from a bottle or other method of feeding.
Producing breast milk
As soon as you have confirmation that your an adoption will be
approved, contact a lactation clinic and start getting taking steps
to get your milk supply ready. Keep in mind, you may never produce a
full milk supply for your baby, although it is possible. You should
never feel discouraged by the amount you pump before the baby
arrives. A pump is never quite as good at extracting milk as a baby
who is well latched and sucking.
Breast Feeding and Jaundice
Jaundice is a result of buildup in the blood of bilirubin, a yellow
pigment that comes from the breakdown of older red blood cells. It's
normal for the red blood cells to break down, although the bilirubin
formed doesn't normally cause jaundice because the liver will
metabolize it and then get rid of it in the gut.
However, the newborn babies often become jaundiced during the first
few days because the liver enzyme that metabolizes the bilirubin is
relatively immature. Therefore, newborn babies will have more red
blood cells than adults, and thus more will break down at any given
Breast milk jaundice
There is a condition that's commonly referred to as breast milk
jaundice, although no one knows what actually causes it. In order to
diagnose it, the baby should be at least a week old. The baby should
also be gaining well with breast feeding alone, having lots of bowel
movements with the passing of clean urine.
If this is the situation, the baby probably has what is referred to
as breast milk jaundice. On occasion, infections of the urine or an
under functioning of the baby's thyroid gland, as well as other rare
illnesses may cause the same types of problems.
Breast milk jaundice will peak at 10 - 21 days, although it can last
for 2 - 3 months. Contrary to what you may think, breast milk
jaundice is normal. Rarely, if ever, does breast feeding need to be
stopped for even a brief period of time.
If the baby is doing well on breast milk, there is no reason at all
to stop or supplement with a lactation aid.
More on breast feeding
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Derek Barrington Essex