Many mums worry about their little ones taking to a bottle once they have expressed breastmilk or are anxious about going from breast to bottle and back again. Thanks to Medela’s ingenious Calma Feeding Device babies can maintain their natural feeding behaviour learnt at the breast. Calma allows babies to suck, swallow and breathe, creating a vacuum for milk to flow, just like breastfeeding. Supporting an easy transition from breast to bottle and back again, Calma is the ultimate feeding device to have when expressing. As well as this, Medela provide a range of breastfeeding products, from PureLan nipple cream, to microwavable sterilising bags, clever breastmilk storage solutions and nipple shields, Medela really is a one stop shop for all breastfeeding essentials!
Not only is Medela famous for its original and advanced breastfeeding range, it is also well known for the invaluable support it offers mums throughout their feeding experience. Every breastfeeding mother will, at some stage, question if she is doing everything ok. Common questions such as, how often do I need to feed my baby, when can I begin expressing, or how do I know if my baby is getting enough milk, will certainly play on their minds.
A study from leading lactation researcher Dr Jacqueline Kent, found that in fact there is no breastfeeding norm, no specific pattern that infants will, or indeed need to adopt, and certainly no set of rules that benchmark the right way to breastfeed. This ground-breaking study is reassuring for all breastfeeding mums, reinforcing the fact that every breastfeeding relationship between mother and baby is unique and will adapt and change as feeding progresses.
Although incredibly reassuring, it is also clearer than ever that every mum will have personal questions and worries specific to their own breastfeeding journey and to help answer these, Medela’s in-house Lactation Consultant and Education Manager, Sioned Hilton is on hand.
Committed and passionate about supporting breastfeeding mothers, Sioned runs a weekly drop-in-clinic across Medela’s social media every Tuesday from 9am – 4.30pm and a live Breastfeeding Café on the third Wednesday of every month from 7.30pm – 9pm. Both platforms offer invaluable information and advice that mum’s can rely on each month. With over 20 years experience working with breastfeeding mums including her time as a Neo-natal Intensive Care Nurse, it is needless to say that there’s not much Sioned doesn’t know about breastfeeding!
Medela understand that for many women, breastfeeding is something they have always wanted to do for their little ones, however for some mums-to-be choosing how they are going to feed their baby can be a difficult decision. To help provide some information and advice on breastfeeding and its ever-growing list of benefits, Sioned also runs a monthly Pregnancy Hour on the second Tuesday of every month on Facebook from 1pm – 2pm.
For those in the midst of breastfeeding and those starting to think about expressing, Sioned has shared her top tips for getting the most out of an expressing session…
• Wait until you and your baby have established breastfeeding and milk production (about 2-3 weeks) if you want to express for your partner to feed baby, but you find that your baby isn’t feeding well or you can’t breastfeed you can exclusively express or support your milk production from birth.
• Try expressing from the left whilst you feed from the right, or vice versa. The skin to skin contact and act of baby feeding will stimulate more milk to flow.
• If you are expressing away from your baby, have a photo or an item of their worn clothing to hand or something that reminds you of them, this will also make it easier for you.
• Find a time to express that you know your baby is most settled between feeds – many mums find this to be mid-morning to mid-afternoon.
• Your body is very clever and works with you to ensure that baby will always have enough milk. Expressing milk will not affect your supply, or use up milk for later feeds!
• Single pumping tip: When you pump one breast at a time, switch from one side to the other several times.
• Massage your breasts before and occasionally during pumping to encourage you let-down and milk flow.
• Once you have expressed your milk, you can store it in the fridge for 3-5 days or in the freezer for 6 months. Once removed from the freezer use within 24 hrs. Make sure you use it all in chronological order.
Further information on Medela can be found here.