Now more than ever, moms of the modern age are faced with the pressure to breastfeed. Whether this push is coming from outside sources or within yourself, it’s definitely a different time than the women who came before us. Today, there is further knowledge and research related to the benefits of breastfeeding a newborn, and more mod women want to at least try it out before making their decision!
If you are a future mom that wants to try breastfeeding, there are various items and products that you will want to have available, because, unfortunately for most, breastfeeding a newborn is NOT easy.
In fact, it’s one of the most difficult challenges I’ve ever faced. I don’t want to scare you. Really I don’t. I want to be honest, though, because I feel like no one was straight up with me about breastfeeding before I started.
Since many failed to mention the troubles I would face prior to nursing my newborn, I was unprepared with the proper nursing tools that could’ve helped make my breastfeeding goals easier.
So, how can you be as ready as possible for this new journey in order to reach your breastfeeding goals?
There are several basic and essential items that many find useful when breastfeeding a newborn. With these suggested products readily available around your house before baby arrives, beginning to breastfeed your baby may not have to be as much of a struggle.
Here are the breastfeeding 101 survival items you need to start breastfeeding your newborn!
1. Have Help Ready (This could be FREE!)
I cannot stress the importance of having a solid foundation for breastfeeding help!
Whether it’s a relative or friend, going to the hospital for a free breastfeeding support group, or hiring a certified lactation consultant to come to your house, make sure you are aware of your options before you start to feel hopeless in this process.
Start researching breast pumps during your pregnancy by calling your health insurance company to see what is covered. My Medela Pump in Style Advanced was free with a prescription from my doctor.
Although you may not be pumping breastmilk right away, it is a good idea to have one handy.
As a side note, if you do plan on pumping and bottlefeeding expressed breastmilk, you will need other supplies aside from the ones I’ve listed in this post.
Somehow, you get used to having your nipples tugged and sucked, but before that happens, they can become extremely sore and cracked.
These soothing gel pads can get expensive, but do feel good in between nursing sessions.
To save money, cut the pads into fours, so you can really get multiple uses out of the pads, as once you pull them from the adhesive, they’re only good for 48 hours!
It’s crazy how your boobs can feel like a leaky faucet from time to time. What’s embarrassing? Being out in public when this happens.
These stick-on absorbent pads stick onto the cups of your bra and are great for soaking up any milk that sprays when it’s not supposed to.
More often than not, women I’ve spoken to have used a nipple shield at some point during their breastfeeding journey. Weird, because I had never heard of something like this prior to having my baby. I wish I would have!
They can be good for newborns who have difficulty with latching or moms who need their breasts to heal while still being able to feed hungry child.
Although I was able to purchase this from my lactation consultant, it would’ve been nice to have one readily available, so I could’ve started the healing process sooner.
You may have to try a couple of sizes before finding the one that works for you.
7. Breastfeeding Pillows: Gia Dr. Brown’s or Boppy
I bought two of the most popular breastfeeding pillows: Gia Dr. Brown’s and Boppy, but didn’t end up using either. So why is it on my list? I know a lot of mamas who LOVE and use their pillows often, while feeding at home.
I did have a chance to try them out and personally prefer the fit and feel of the Gia Dr. Brown’s pillow over the Boppy pillow. The Gia is more open in the back, so it’s good for lying down and lounging on the couch during a feed sesh.
Either would be a great addition to your breastfeeding a newborn survival kit!
For each pillow, a case will be needed, so don’t forget to add that to your list! Here is one that fits the Gia Dr. Brown’s pillow.
Since breastfeeding a newborn is a learning experience for both you and your baby, it makes it extremely difficult to work with your little one in the middle night, if you can’t see them! A nightlight in our bedroom was a must.
Although I’m not the biggest fan of LED lights, I love the automatic sensors on these nightlights I purchased from Buy Buy Baby. Check them out to light up your room!
9. Lots of LARGE burp rags
Why do they make burp rags so freaking small? Honestly, my baby’s spit up is rarely saved by a tiny rag! We took a bunch of the large swaddle blankets from the hospital. They’ve been really handy!
Check out more things I’m happy I did during my hospital stay after delivery here.
10. Nursing Attire
Comfortable nursing clothes are a must.
- You’ll have to change outfits at least 3 times a day due to milk, spit up, or vomit.
- You’ll want that baby to have easy access to the thing that’s going to make them stop crying- your booby!
- You’ll be tired AF, so you’ll want to feel as normal as possible in your clothes.
Use this list of my favorite nursing wear as a starting point for your wardrobe.
To go along with the clothes, you will definitely need some dairy and grease stain removers!
Greasy residue can easily end up on your clothes when you are using products to help soothe your sore nips. Likewise, breastfeeding a newborn results in milk everywhere and is a hell of a stain, if not treated properly.
The Carbona Stain Removers work wonders and are useful to have on hand. The two I use the most are the fat and cooking oil remover and the milk, blood, and dairy remover.
For many, breastfeeding a newborn is a struggle. You will be much more prepared than I was for the trenches with this breastfeeding 101 starter kit.
You should save receipts or buy off your own registry, so it’s easier to return things you don’t end up using.
Although returning is a hassle, it’s better than sending your clueless partner to the breastfeeding section of a baby store to find what you need! I’ve been there, done that…
Comment below with anything else you feel would be a great addition to this breastfeeding survival guide and share this to support breastfeeding mamas who have the desire to go through this journey with their babies!