Transcript: A Great Start to Breastfeeding (Featuring Ina May Gaskin)

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The Boob Group
“A Great Start To Breastfeeding”
Featuring Ina May Gaskin

Episode 10, July 2nd, 2012
Please be advised, this transcription was performed from a company independent of New
Mommy Media, LLC. As such, translation was required which may alter the accuracy of the

[Theme Music]
Ina May Gaskin:
Learning about breastfeeding and it’s components that is often
overlooked by pregnant moms as they prepare for their new
babies. We often have no idea what breastfeeding actually looks
like. Today, I In May Gaskin also known as the mother of midwives
shares how mothers can prepare for an enjoyable
breastfeeding experience. This is The Boob Group, Episode 10.
[Theme Music/Intro]
Robin Kaplan:
Welcome to The Boob Group broadcasting from the Birth
Education Center of San Diego. I’m your host, Robin Kaplan. I’m
also a certified lactation consultant and owner of the San Diego
Breastfeeding Center. At The Boob Group, we’re your online
support group for all things related to breastfeeding. Visit our
website at
for more information
on how you can become a part of our show. You can join our
conversation by following us on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.
You can also send us comments or suggestions through our
website or call The Boob Group hotline at 619-866-4775. Today,
I’m joined by three fantastic panelists in the studio. Ladies, will
you please introduce yourselves?
Keegan Sheridan:
Hi, I’m Keegan Sheridan. I’m 35. I’m a licensed naturopathic doctor
and also a Natural Food and Health expert for major cereal
company. I have two children. Miles is 23 months and Ames is
almost 6 months.
Val Velasquez:
Hi, I’m Currier Val Velasquez. I am a former fashion stylist, now a
stay-at-home mom. I am 26 and have two children. Olivia is 2 ½
and Mila is almost 11 months.
Christina Williams:
I’m Christina Williams. I’m 33 years old. I’m in medical education
and I have one daughter, Paige. She is just about 5 months.
Robin Kaplan:
Thanks for joining us on the show ladies.
[Theme Music]
[Featured Segment: Ask The Experts]
Robin Kaplan:
Before we get started with today’s topic, here’s a question you all
had for one of our experts.
Hi Boob Group. My name is Daniel. I’m from Manhattan. I’m
currently pregnant with twins. I’m due in a few months and I’m
having a tough time finding local and online resources for
breastfeeding twins. Do you think that attending a regular
prenatal breastfeeding class will prepare me adequately for
breastfeeding my twins? Also, can you recommend ways that I can
connect with other moms of twins in my community? Thank you
so much. I really appreciate it.
Hi there, it’s Jona. Great question Daniel, I absolutely think that a
regular prenatal breastfeeding class would be helpful for a mom of
twins especially if these are your first babies. There are many
factors that can make breastfeeding twins more complicated and
look different that having and understanding of the basic
mechanics can only help. It’s a great idea to supplement a class
like this with some twin specific resources. I recommend Karen
Gromada’s book, Mothering Multiples. There’s also a website,
for pregnancy, breastfeeding and
parenting resources for parents of multiples. I also find it useful to
schedule a prenatal breastfeeding complication with a local ITCLC
who can address any specific questions you have and help you get
content with the baby breasts and keep friends on hand for super
active babies after the babies arrive. It’s also great to connect with
some moms of multiples. You can join your local parents of
multiples organization for online or in person’s support resources.
Know that fun things comes from more breastfeeding educated
than others so if you noted the support you need there, you don’t
have to look elsewhere. In some areas there are local La Leche
League or other mother-to-mother support groups have
experienced supporting moms of multiples can be a great option
for meeting other moms. There are also support groups offered at
hospitals and in private practitioner center. You can contact them
to see if there are other groups specific for moms of multiples or if
they have links to resources in your area. There are also online
forms of breastfeeding trends support on several of the online
parenting communities which can be another great way of
connecting and learning from other moms and that you can do
that from the comfort of your pyjamas or at 4 in the morning. And
of course you can check out my website,

Home Layout

for lessons and more information
on support.
[Theme Music]
Robin Kaplan:
We have a very special interview today on The Boob Group. I
recently interviewed In May Gaskin, a well-known and well
respected midwife who has written several books including Ina
May’s guide to childbirth, Ina May’s guide to breastfeeding and
Birth matters and midwife’s manifesto. Ina May was the key note
speaker at the Your Natural Baby Fair here in San Diego. Sunny
Gault, the host and producer of our sister show, Preggie Pals, MC
Denan introduced the speakers including In May which was a
pleasure in itself. After the event I was able to sit down with her
and talk one-on-one about how to get breastfeeding off to a great
start and here’s what she had to say.
Robin Kaplan:
Hi did is Robin Kaplan from The Boob Group and I’m here
interviewing Ina May about her perspective on breastfeeding. So,
Ina May, I have couple questions for you. The first one is, what
kind of mother do you tell during pregnancy to prepare herself
best for breastfeeding.
Ina May Gaskin:
Be around women who breastfed. Just hang around them,
observe them, hold their babies when they need to go to the
bathroom or whatever. Get familiar with babies and find out what
interesting, fascinating creatures they are.
Robin Kaplan:
Absolutely, during my breastfeeding classes, I teach prenatal
breastfeeding classes and that’s one of the things that I’ve gained
from my moms and my support groups as they said they wished
they would have gone to support groups, the breastfeeding
support groups while they were pregnant. That way they could
see mothers, they call it in-the-natural habitat to see what it looks
like, how they breastfeed because most of the women that we see
in public are covered, you know, it’s not necessarily acceptable to
breastfeed out in the open in The United States and so they said
the breastfeeding support group is one of the first places that they
actually saw what it looked like to see a woman breastfeed.
Ina May Gaskin:
Right, I think it’s really important to do that and I, urges, I was in
the airport in Texas that had a plague place for kids at the airport
finally, a place for kids to hop around and play and where they
can, you know, throw their little bodies around and have fun while
waiting for the airplane. Now, the next thing is where is the
breastfeeding place? Where the women can collect together to do
that and where somebody else who’s pregnant might be able to
walk in there. Let’s have them in shopping malls. Let’s have them
near parks. Let’s make the restaurants understand, oh yes, some
people don’t want to be around breastfeeding moms but, you
know, let’s have the parent’s place, you know, where the kids are.
So, let’s create these areas of sanctuary for breastfeeding moms
and those that don’t want to see them can go to the other places
because it’s a human need to see this physiological activity and we
cannot confine breastfeeding moms to their homes.
Robin Kaplan:
Absolutely, I love that idea. Thank you for mentioning that. What
kind of mother do you during labor and birth to ensure getting
breastfeeding off to a great start?
Ina May Gaskin:
Well, the best thing is to not have medication if possible and to
rely on the hormones that the body secretes and the optimal
settings for birth. Then, nature kind of does the rest in most cases
and sometimes we need a little help with somebody who’s
knowledgeable. I think the best thing is that the baby stays with
the mother. Baby doesn’t leave the mother and there’s no need
for quick chord cutting and clamping. So, we let that go till the
pulsation stops at least and then keep the baby with the mother.
We don’t have to do all these weighing and measuring and stuff
like that. The baby is not gonna lose any significant amount of
weight. It certainly isn’t gonna grow taller. [Laughs] So, the needs
of the institution are less important than the needs of that
individual mother- baby pair. Then what we like to do is when the
baby starts to exhibit the signs and just ready for breastfeeding
and this shouldn’t be hurried up, you know. The baby is out,
looking around, his attention is not in the mouth, it’s just not the
time to cram the breasts and the mouth expects anything to
happen. But, when we do see those signs then, without putting
our hands on the mom, we kind of, gently guide her to what
would help. Lot of babies will just latch while mom is in a lying
down position. But, it depends on, you know, the shape and often
breast size and you know, what the nipples are like, you know. If
she needs to sit up a bit, then we help her with that and we
suggest, you know, we watch and suggest to her what’s gonna
make that first latch to get the baby’s first ever result in a good
latch. If you succeed in doing that, the baby learns. And so,
sometimes you have the baby that doesn’t open the mouth very
much and so then how do we get the baby’s mouth to open more
and I ask mom to open her mouth. And they imitate because they
do mimic and they do know what’s going on. So, give the baby
some credit for smart and give them the help they needed.
Sometimes baby almost get to, just need that lower lip pulled so
that it keeps the mom from developing sore nipples. And then, I’m
saying to the mom it’s not supposed to hurt. So, if it’s curling your
toes and you’re just gonna bare, that’s going to hurt you and it’s
really, I think, moms, I think, during pregnancy it’s really wise that
they can learn manual expression so that they can learn the skill
of expressing a few drops of colostrum. I think it’s very important
for them to know going in, that colostrum comes in very small
amounts and that’s physiological, this baby is not meant to eat on
days 1 and 2. Any significant amount, a few drops are very
important medicine and you know, enough for the baby. Then, it’s
also good for her to know how to disconnect without the baby
gumming her nipples. So she needs to know how to depress the
portion of her breasts and break the suction so that she can seize
the nipple out and then the baby will be surprised and then we try
to coax the baby to open the mouth again. Again, help get that
good latch and it helps to bring the baby’s dad over to have a look
and so if she’s got large, fluffy breasts that he can know what that
lower lip is doing. We need to teach the family how to help by
bringing her water, bringing her the things she needs because
she’s gonna be sitting there a lot of the time and to know that this
is the way that it is to be. That’s why I like that first 10 days, her in
her nest. Let Facebook do that showing the baby to everybody
else and when she feels this motherly protected instincts about
not letting, want everybody to hold the baby, obey that.
Everybody can wait.
Robin Kaplan:
I like to tell moms that I think the reason nature has intended us
to sit down for over to 30-40 minutes for each feeding session
because it’s the only way that women actually stay seated and
actually relax and allow other people to come and help take care
of her and her baby because that’s the way it was supposed to be.
We weren’t supposed to be the hostess of everyone in the town
to come and see our baby those first couple days and I think that’s
what really gets women off to a difficult, they are faced with a
difficult challenge of allowing their human process to take place
because they’re doing too much and so I tell them there’s a
reason that we’re supposed to sit down and nurse our children for
these extended periods of time in the beginning because it’s
nature’s way of telling you sit down and stop doing so much and
bond with your baby and learn the new wants of your baby.
Ina May Gaskin:
That’s true and I would say that’s a really good time and already in
late pregnancy I mean, you’re already backing off the caffeine. We
consume huge amounts of caffeine. Never so much, you know, has
any people that I’m aware of consumed and so, we have to think
about that and go, “is that really good for us to do so much to
overdo”, I mean, have this huge, you know, I mean a cup size, so
much has such a big effect on the body and it runs a life force too
hard, I think. So, I think that a new mom really, probably could do
without that and take wearing off during, certainly during
pregnancy and then, you know, get back to what zero is because
when you listen to the body’s signals that’s what you have to do if
you want to maintain good health and surely that’s part of the job
of being the mother is not only to do that for the baby but to
maintain your own because that’s also for the baby, it’s for all the
Robin Kaplan:
Absolutely, one last question for you. What are some of the
important things to remember in the first days of breastfeeding
which you recommend for a mom?
Ina May Gaskin:
The baby’s poop will change color dramatically so, its’ gonna be
black and tarry and first and then it gets, it moves into the browns
and may be a little green phase going on and then want to gets to
yellow. Now you’re getting to where the baby is really getting a lot
food. There is a, your baby is not gonna starve, right, easily
because the baby comes equipped with a lot of glycogen stored in
the vital organs. That makes the baby not actually ready to eat at
first and what they’re doing the first two days, they’re clearing out
the meconium which is not the baby, alright. That was sort of the
packing material that keeps the intestines from sticking together,
right. And so, the colostrum is kind of a lacks if that helps get that
out and especially babies whose mothers have had epidurals and
have been loaded up with IV fluids, a lot of that extra fluid is
gonna be coming out of the baby and that again is not the baby.
So please don’t freak out when somebody tells you the baby has
lost so many ounces while in the hospital. This is nothing to freak
out about. But, what you want to do is to have the baby as close
to your body as possible, skin to skin contact is ideal for as much
of the day is possible. Just holding the baby, being with the baby
and you know, put your, you know, don’t be texting, you know,
that’s, those play things don’t belong in your hands while the baby
should be there. So, maximize your communication with the baby
until you really get your nervous systems in the kind of, contact
they should be and then you’ll have a better entry into
breastfeeding and it can be a true joy as well as a time saver and a
built-in relaxation and meditation for you. That can slow down the
pace. Modern life keeps going faster, faster, faster and if the
woman doesn’t slow it down, I don’t see how anybody else in the
family would have the power to do that. So, that’s the, you know,
you’re kind of the fly wheel of the family I’d say and so we have to
not keep up with that pace and it’s not a matter of going out and
showing everybody what you did. Let somebody put a photo up
on Facebook and let that do the talking.
Robin Kaplan:
That’s terrific advice. Thank you, it was such a pleasure to meet
Ina May Gaskin:
Good to meet you.
Robin Kaplan:
That concludes our interview with Ina May Gaskin. We now know
more about Ina May’s suggestions for breastfeeding mothers as
well as how mothers can be proactive in creating a positive
breastfeeding experience for themselves and the babies. When
we return, we will hear from our panelists about what they did to
get breastfeeding off to a great start.
[Theme Music]
Robin Kaplan:
So, welcome back. Ladies, after listening to Ina May’s advice about
how to get breastfeeding off to a great start, what tips really
resonated with you?
Keegan Sheridan:
I just wanna say, I love Ina May and I was so excited to listen to
this interview. It was kind of cool just to hear her voice because
I’ve read two of her few books. I think the thing that has
resonated with me the most about Ina May was how she kept
coming back to this, this meeting to, to an end and to now to a lot
of the stuff that’s going around both from a pacing perspective in
our lives, not texting, I’m totally guilty of texting while in there,
that was kind of resonated for me, that she’s such a powerful
woman and I think her power comes in her simplicity and that’s
the message that she has to share with all of us is that we know
how to do it. We were made to do it and if you just trust yourself,
that’s when you can be successful. So it was a total treat to listen
to that.
Val Velasquez
I agree and it definitely resonated with me especially because I felt
that exclusively breastfeeding my first and with my second, I was
forced to be on the couch because I had a very hard C-section
recovery and I actually feel that was a blessing because I literally
lived on the couch for a week and the baby lived on my breasts
and I feel that, that is what may help to succeed the second time
around. It was just me and her and we made it happen and we
made it happen by doing nothing. So….
Robin Kaplan:
That’s awesome.
Christina Williams:
I really appreciated her thoughts on keeping everyone away for a
little bit, taking that time for yourself and the baby. I didn’t do that
very well and in much respect I should have put my foot down and
kept that time to ourselves.
Robin Kaplan:
yeah, that definitely resonated with me as well ‘coz the first time
around. My oldest son was the first grandchild out of the entire
family and so everyone wanted to see him and I played hostess for
those first couple weeks and we got off to a really rough start, not
just for parenting but bonding and parenting and so the second
time around, we made some pretty significant changes in how we
allowed people to come over and meet the baby and it was more,
I felt respectful of our family and our bonding time and just
getting to know each other and I felt it went so much more
smoothly and I still had my breastfeeding challenges with my
second one. It wasn’t that, that was all fixed but, I felt like I got to
know him so much better because I listened to my intuition which
is I think Ina May really recommends and I agree with you Keegan
and the simplicity when I was interviewing her, just like, you’re so
dead on like, she just, she gets it and that’s why she is this
powerful woman who is really creating change, you know, for all
of us new moms.
Keegan Sheridan:
Yeah, she rocks.
Robin Kaplan:
Yeah, she totally does. So ladies, how, you know, Ina May talks
about how she recommends preparing for breastfeeding, you
know, being around a babies and being around pregnant moms
and moms who are breastfeeding and things like that. How did
you prepare for breastfeeding while you were pregnant?
Val Velasquez:
Well, I mean going back again to Ina May and the simplicity of it, I
realized the second time around that I didn’t need anything really.
You know, all I needed was just the education of you know, you
don’t need a pacifier, you don’t need a bottle. You definitely do
not need formula. So, it really helped me to just read a book for
proper latching techniques and just go into it with just this idea of
all I need is the baby and me and just the will to do it and I feel
that is what I needed to prepare is just we’re gonna make it. We
don’t need the vows and whistles and we did it.
Robin Kaplan:
Just trusting in yourself and….
Val Velasquez:
Robin Kaplan:
It’s perfect.
Keegan Sheridan:
Yeah, I read books. Ina May’s book was a big one for me. But, I
read some others as well, took class and I even took a refresher
class with you Robin before I had my second baby too just to make
sure all of the little details that may have faded in the haze of
those first few weeks were fresh for me. But, I think one thing that
I was able to do with both babies but certainly with the second
baby having had experience of doing it before was just to have a
lot of patience and not feeling rushed to make anything happen at
all. Ina May talks about this and you certainly would see this in
any book that you read that the baby really doesn’t need any
calories at the beginning and I think that, at least for me was very,
it gave me permission to not try and force things because all you
want is to make sure your baby is okay. And if you know that your
baby was kind of built to be self-sufficient for a while, then you
can just let them do whatever they’re gonna do and so it was
almost fun the second time around to kind of see him rooting on
my chest looking for my breasts and allowing that process to take
20 or 30 minutes for him to get there wasn’t, it wasn’t a big deal
in kind of letting him kind of figure it out. His latch wasn’t great at
first but, it also wasn’t hurting me. So, I just went with that and he
did as he was doing it more and more he got better and better
and pretty soon, he had a great latch and it was done.
Val Velasquez:
I think that is especially important in a hospital setting or it was for
me because unlike my birth center and home birthing friends, I
had nurses down my throat all day, you know, weighing her and
trying to see you know, how she was nursing and things like that
and the second time around I went into it knowing okay, she
doesn’t need, she’s not gonna get a bottle’s worth of milk. She
doesn’t need a bottle’s worth of milk so I don’t need to
supplement. I don’t need to worry about her gaining. I know she’s
gonna lose. I think knowing what to expect makes a world of
difference because you don’t pressure yourself or the baby into
doing things that you don’t even need to do.
Robin Kaplan:
Yeah you do have a couple days where to kind of play around with
like, Ina May said that it was just the calories is not as important
as getting rid about Meconium which is why there is colostrum,
you know, and to cloak their gut and so, you are absolutely correct
is that they don’t need a full bottle and so knowing that, just
knowing that they’re getting this theory minimal amount but the
quality of it is so intense that it kind of just allows you to kind of
sit back and say okay do what you need to do. What were you
gonna say?
Christina Williams:
I did a lot of reading. I read a ton of books, internet, I went to a
breastfeeding course Robin. I thought I had it made. I thought I
knew exactly what to expect and what was going to happen and
well, I knew what was supposed to happen and it wasn’t falling
into place the way I expected. It was very frustrating for me. I
didn’t receive the kind of lactation support in the hospital that I
should have and my daughter had a tummy tie that was not like
known until about a week after she was born and so, I was facing
a lot of struggles because of that. And once that was repaired,
things got a lot better and if I would have known that in the
beginning and would do something about that, I think it would
have been a lot easier.
Robin Kaplan:
Another quick thing I thought right now and has also helped me is
knowing your failures. You know, I know first time moms can’t
really rely on this one but second time moms certainly can is you
know, I know that I have flat nipples. So, I got one of those little
Medela shields 4 and I know that they’re not super recommended
if you don’t need it and I definitely would not use it unless it was
my last resort but, it was my last resort and we’re still exclusively
breastfeeding for almost a year and I really think that little thing
for that, in my special case though. Ladies, did you happen to go
to a support group while you were pregnant?
Christina Williams:
I didn’t and you recommended to me that I should and I should
have listened to you.
Robin Kaplan:
Think it would have been helpful?
Christina Williams:
Yes, absolutely.
Robin Kaplan:
How come?
Christina Williams:
Just seeing everybody breastfeed, seeing everybody feel
comfortable doing it and watching technique, I felt very awkward
holding my daughter. I felt like I was doing it wrong. Just physically,
I thought I held her wrong and I did have it wrong and it would
have been helpful to see that.
Val Velasquez:
I should have, I went to your class when Mila, as soon as I was
able to walk. I went and I wish I have gone before but, I didn’t.
Robin Kaplan:
Keegan, how about you? Did you go to a support group while you
were pregnant?
Keegan Sheridan:
Just to see if people are seeing, no. I didn’t and I wish I did. It
makes total sense. No one brought it up to me, you know. It still
seems too obvious afterwards. But, I think especially in our
country where breastfeeding is not, you mentioned this when you
were interviewing her, Ina May that we cover ourselves, that we
do it hiding or we don’t do it public at all so, you don’t see women
nursing. It seems ludicrous to me, now that I’m a nursing woman
but, it’s one of those things, it’s like you’re brought into the fold
once you have a baby and this whole new world is open to you.
That was completely out of the picture before you had children.
So, no, I’m sad about that but, no.
Robin Kaplan:
You could share it with your friends. [Laughs] Like it or not, they’re
gonna see it. So, Ina May recommends spending at least those
first 10 days or longer without visitors that you and your baby can
become and sink with one another. What do you think about this
Val Velasquez:
I completely agree with it. However, there’s also the other side of
it is visitors are, can definitely be more of a problem in the
beginning because they distract you from bonding and all that.
However, support is different because like I said I was healing. My
husband is a full time student and works and I had a two year old
then. So, it was crucial for me to have help so I could just be in
sink with the baby. If without that, I don’t know how I would have
Keegan Sheridan:
That’s a really good point. I feel like there has to be a balance.
Sometimes moms have to know that they will need help in the
beginning especially if you have other small children and if you’re
healing. However, it also has to be number one priority to just sit
and nurse and just enjoy your baby, really, just that tiny little new
born head smell is [Laughs]….could bottle it up and sell it. [Laughs]
Robin Kaplan:
How about you Christina?
Christina Williams:
I think that’s great. My house has a revolving door by any means
but it was more than I could handle. My daughter was born few
days before Christmas and I got sucked into the whole family
coming over and all the expectations around a major holiday and I
should have just ignored Christmas for the year and called it done
because it would have been really helpful to just have that down
time without the gifts and the shopping and making sure this
person has this and the card is signed and it’s over with this
person and you know, it was really hectic and I didn’t need that.
Keegan Sheridan:
Well, when I was in school getting my naturopathic degree, there
was a lot of emphasis on the concept of a fourth trimester and so I
had learned about that in my studies and my friends who were
also naturopaths and had children before me had really talked
about how true that really was, that first 12 weeks. So, I went into
both of my births with a total plan around with this fourth
trimester. This fourth trimester was going to be like, and I was
militant about not having people in my home and visiting and it’s
a memory that I really cherish because it was just me and my
husband figuring out how to take care of a baby and I’m sure it
was ridiculous. I’m glad there weren’t people to see it.
Robin Kaplan:
No judgment, right? [Laughs]
Keegan Sheridan:
…because we never had any experience with kids before we had
one. But, I’m really glad that we did that ‘cause it was like this
little, it was like a cocoon. It was this really special experience that
I got to have and it’s nice. Your home is just quiet and soft and full
of warm, free things and you just get to nuzzle for a few weeks
and it was great.
Robin Kaplan:
Absolutely, but I do, I’m very appreciative that you mentioned Val
just how important, it’s finding that balance of what you’re
comfortable with too and so, it’s, I’d like to say as well, like, don’t
be the murderer. If someone comes over and they want to bring
you diner and they want to do your laundry, let them do it
because that means more time for you and your baby to sit there
and nuzzle on one another. So….
Keegan Sheridan:
And I think it’s different. It’s not like, it sounds like it, Val in your
case, it wasn’t that, that people coming over and wanting to hold
your baby and take that bond, wanting time away. They were
taking care of the rest of your life which is different and yeah, with
my second, that was definitely the case. I mean, I stayed in my
bedroom but, there were people coming in and out all day long to
bring over food or just drop it outside the front door or whatever.
So, that was definitely happening. I just wasn’t seeing it which was
Robin Kaplan:
So, what tips would you share with pregnant friends now, for
getting breastfeeding off to a great start kind of based on your
experiences as well as kind of picking from some of the
philosophies that Ina made sure today?
Keegan Sheridan:
Well, you know, I had two very different birth experiences so, I will
say that one of my recommendations is what Ina May says if you
can have a natural birth and get the support team in place to
support you and having that happen, that natural birth so, no
medications. I do think that, that makes a difference. I mean, for
me it was the difference between, you know, I had a C-Section
with my first and a natural, unmedicated birth with my second
and that second birth, the baby went right on my chest. He was on
my chest when they cut the chord. He was there on my chest until
I put him in a car seat to leave the hospital and I think that, that
really set things up in a much better way than with my first where
we were separated for a very long time, almost 24 hours. And, he
ended up and he had a good nurses so it ended up being okay but,
you know, I was guilty about that first 24 hours and what didn’t he
get from me and all of that stuff. So, yeah, I think if you know,
getting that support team in place to support what you want to
have happened, to help the chances of it happening is really
helpful ‘cause it causes a positive chain reaction that has an
impact on breastfeeding.
Val Velasquez:
Going off on what she said which is also what I’ve told, you know,
my best friend recently had a baby and she had it naturally and
the minute we found out that she was pregnant, I was like, you
know, find out what you want to have your baby and just try to
not do it at a hospital because I mean, not that I have anything
against hospitals but I had two C-sections and with the second
one, I waited and waited and finally we had to do it again. But, I
went into it saying to the doctors and nurses in, you know what, in
a crazy mom-o-line way, you know, as soon as you can give her to
me, please give her to me. I want to nurse her. I probably said that
30 times and I have this awesome picture of me nursing her when
I was still kind of, woozy and you know, an hour after she was born
which for a C-Section is really soon and that was so awesome to
be in the recovery room still with my little hat on, nursing her and
that is probably my biggest advice is no matter how you birth,
hopefully it’s in a peaceful, un-medicated way. But, you don’t still
fight to have that baby with you as soon as you can because it’s
exactly a positive chain of events will likely follow.
Robin Kaplan:
Yeah, being your own advocate and being proactive, you have to
be especially at a hospital. How about you Christina?
Christina Williams:
You know, those things are for me as well but, additionally it really
resonated that she said to learn manual expression. That would
have been really helpful for me before the baby was born and also
what she said about the loss of birth weight. I knew to expect a
loss of birth weight but I had a medicated delivery, had some
complications. I was induced for medical reasons and I didn’t
realize how much of that would add weight to her that she would
then lose and so the pediatricians were coming in, very concerned
about her loss of weight and really in much respect, it wasn’t a
considerable amount. And if I would have known a little bit more
about what the medication was going to do, I think that would
have helped me a lot.
Robin Kaplan:
That’s a great point and the manual expression, there’s a
wonderful website out there with a video. If you Google,
Standford university, hand expression or manual expression,
there’s about a 5 minute video on there by Dr. Jane Mortan and
she shows you how to do it and I actually recommend for almost
all to watch it especially moms who know that they’re gonna need
a Cesarean birth for whatever medical reasons just to know how
to do that because it helps bring in your supply faster and we
made some studies on it. So, thank you for mentioning that as
well. Ladies, thank you so much for your advice and insight into
getting breastfeeding off to a great start. Again, it was an absolute
pleasure to interview Ina May and I personally thank her for her
time and her insight into preparing breastfeeding.
[Theme Music]
[Featured Segment: Overcoming Societal Booby Traps]
Robin Kaplan:
Before we wrap things up, here’s Lara Adelo talking about ways to
overcome societal booby traps.
Lara Audelo:
Hi Boob Group listeners. I’m Lara Audelo, a certified lactation
educator, the regional marketing manager at Best For Babes and
owner of MamaPear Designs. I’m here to answer some of your
most common questions about how you can achieve your
personal breastfeeding goals without being undermined by
cultural and institutional booby traps such as why should a new
born bath wait? Babies can make a pretty messy interest into the
world but some gentle toweling off, ideally on the mom’s chest,
can go a long way to moving the group. What the evidence
strongly suggest however, is that dealing with that by whisking the
baby away to its first bath is dangerous in several ways. It
negatively affects baby’s body temperature and can be harmful to
breastfeeding too. Why, because the baby’s instinct is to call for
the breast and he or she is driven by the sense of smell in “The
Impact of the Birthing Practices on Breastfeeding” Linda Smith
explains, the senses of smell and touch are especially powerful
triggers of infant and maternal behavior. The new born sense of
smell is especially acute in the first hours triggering breast seeking
behaviors and movements. Washing or bathing the mother or the
baby will remove all factory cues to support breastfeeding and it
attachment and should be avoided. We can see this behavior in
the breast call. The instinctual movement of the new born
towards the breast in the first hour or so after birth and a research
is shown a remarkable difference in behaviors between babies
who were bathed and babies who weren’t. The sense of smell and
particularly the smell amniotic fluid on the baby and a similar
smell of the mother’s breast appears to be one factor unlocking
the sequence of this instinctive behavior. This is also worn out by
the fact that a baby after wash, she will be less likely to do the
instinctual hand and mouth movement typically seen in the first
hour after birth. For these reasons, the California Department of
Public Health, to name one of many health authorities,
recommends it in its model of hospitals toolkit. Babies are usually
most ready to breastfeed during the first hour after birth and for
the normal newborn this should occur prior to such interventions
such as the newborn bath, glucose sticks, foot printing and eye
treatments. During the first day of life, skin-to-skin time and
breastfeeding should take priority over every other routine event
such as infant bathing, textures and visitors. But, lots of moms feel
that they have this option. Unfortunately some moms are still
pressured to have their babies bathed early on. If you’re
concerned your baby might be bathed in the first hours or that it
might interrupt your skin to skin experience on your first day, you
can specify your wishes in your birth plan and discuss this with
your providers. A special Thank you to Tanya Lieberman, IBCLC for
writing the booby trap series for Best For Babes. Visit
for more great information about
how to meet your personal breastfeeding goals and my website,
for breastfeeding support at variable and be sure to listen to The Boob Group for fantastic
conversations about breastfeeding and breastfeeding support.
Robin Kaplan:
Thank you to all of our listeners. If you don’t already have Ina
May’s book, you can purchase them through the online store on
our website. If you have any questions for one of our experts, we’d
love to hear it. Call the Boob Group hotline at 619-866-4775.
Leave us a message and we’ll answer your question on an
upcoming episode. Thanks for listening to the Boob Group
because mothers know breasts.
This has been a New Mommy Media Production. The information
materials contained in this episode are presented for educational
purposes only. Statements and opinions expressed in this episode
are not necessarily those of New Mommy Media and should not
be considered facts. Though such information materials are
believed to be accurate, it is not intended to replace or substitute
for professional medical advice or care and should not be used for
diagnosing or treating health care problems or disease or
prescribing any medication. If you have questions or concerns
regarding your physical or mental health or the health of your
baby, please seek assistance from a qualified healthcare provider.
End of Audio

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