Breastfeeding for Dads

Just because your body doesn't produce a beverage doesn't mean you're off the hook on the breastfeeding front. Studies have shown that a father's help and support is a key factor in how long and effectively a mother breastfeeds.

Be prepared to help out by:

  • sterilizing and assembling breast pump parts
  • running for hot compresses in the event of a clogged duct
  • presiding over one of her night feedings so that she can remain in bed, semi-conscious throughout

To take over a night feeding, bring the baby to the breast, help him latch on, switch from one breast to the other, burp him, change him, and put him back to sleep. Your partner will appreciate the effort, and it may help you secure that time-share.

And after the first month, you can help feed him his first bottle. This is a profoundly enjoyable experience, followed by another joyous moment, his first bottle burp, which is usually fuller and deeper than a breast burp (on account of the air bubbles).

From BE PREPARED by Gary Greenberg and Jeannie Haydn. Copyright © 2004 by Gary Greenberg and Jeannie Haydn. Reprinted by permission of Simon & Schuster, Inc.

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