Les VRAI / FAUX de l'allaitement

Breastfeeding: true or false?

12 min

1. Impossible if I have small breasts: FALSE! 

A big bust is related to a high mass of adipose tissue (fat) rather than a large number of lobes and alveoli (which secrete milk). So the amount of milk will depend on your storage capacity, not the size of your breasts at all.   

2. It’s painful: It can be sometimes, but it’s by no means inevitable.

To begin with, you may be a little sore, but it isn’t always the case. Once established, breastfeeding should not hurt. If it does and you have cracked nipples, it is probably due to a problem positioning your baby correctly. If this is the case, you can ask a healthcare professional, midwife or breastfeeding advisor for help. 

 To avoid pain 

  • Your baby’s mouth must be correctly positioned: the upper lip curled up and the lower lip “deployed” 
  • Your baby’s mouth should cover the whole areola 
  • Baby should swallow one in every 2 or 3 sucks. You can see your baby swallow: she is correctly positioned. 
  • For the position: you can nurse your baby either in the “Madonna” position, with the baby’s head, neck and back aligned. Or in the “rugby ball” position, with your baby on her side, under your arm. Or lying on your side, making sure the baby is always properly aligned.
  • The most important thing is that you are relaxed and comfortable. You can use a nursing pillow to help you position your baby correctly. 

Note: immediately after your baby’s birth, you may also have uterine contractions while nursing your baby. These are not terribly comfortable but they are a natural phenomenon that will help your womb and your tummy quickly return to their normal size. 

3. It helps you lose weight: neither TRUE nor FALSE ️

Or rather, opinion is divided... Some new mums say that breastfeeding has helped them lose the weight they put on during pregnancy. But to date no studies have proved that breastfeeding helps expend calories or burn fat... You will have to see for yourself!

4. It’s tiring: FALSE/️... and a little bit TRUE  

It is not the act of breastfeeding itself that is tiring but the need to respond to your baby’s needs at all hours of the day and night. Don’t hesitate to ask your baby’s dad for help! So that it’s not always you who has to get up at night, you can express your milk so it can be given in a bottle. And remember that breastfeeding releases endorphins that will give you a pleasant feeling of well-being!   

5. You are obliged to eat healthily TRUE... but don’t stress! 

Your body will draw on your reserves to ensure you produce excellent-quality milk.  So whatever you eat, it will always meet your baby’s nutritional needs. So don’t panic if your diet goes slightly off track!  However, alcohol is totally banned! 

An important point to remember is that the essential fatty acid content (Omega 3 and 6) of your breast milk depends on your own diet. For Omega 3, you can eat oily fish once or twice a week. And Omega 6 can be found in certain types of oil, such as walnut or sunflower oil. . 

6. Breast milk is not enough: FALSE!

Anyone who tells you that your milk is not nourishing is wrong. It is the most recommended food for babies, and always has been! If your baby is not putting on weight, there could be several reasons: perhaps it’s a problem with positioning, the number of feeds, the amount of time spent nursing at each feed, etc. 

In that case, don’t hesitate to seek professional help as soon as you can! 

7. The milk produced in the first few days is particularly rich: TRUE!  

This milk is called Colostrum. It is produced naturally by all women in the hours following delivery and up until the 3rd day. It is special due to its specific nutritional composition. In particular, it is very high in antibodies and proteins, including Lactoferrin, the 2nd most abundant protein in breast milk. 

8. You need to wait 3 hours between each feed: FALSE! ️

On the contrary, it is better to feed on demand because the more your baby nurses the more milk you will produce! 

9. You can’t breastfeed in public places: FALSE!  

Unfortunately, there are still some people who disapprove but you absolutely have the right to breastfeed in public and you definitely should not feel embarrassed to do so. If you are a little apprehensive about it, start by breastfeeding in a place where you feel comfortable. And if you are shy or modest, there are clothes you can wear that allow you to breastfeed your baby very discreetly, protecting your modesty. And you can also safely cover your baby as he nurses with a cloth or shawl.  

10. Breastfeeding excludes dad: FALSE!

Although breastfeeding creates an exceptional mother/baby bond, dad is important too and you can help him feel part of this bonding process!  He can support you, help create a soothing environment‍, watch while you feed your baby, bring you something to eat, take over from you for other tasks such as washing or changing. And if you express milk, he can give baby a bottle!