North Central Health District

COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENTS

Breastfeeding

SHARE
Breastfeeding

Give Your Baby the Best

Research has shown that there’s no better food than breast milk for your baby’s first year of life. Breastfeeding provides lots of health, nutritional, economical and emotional benefits to both mother and baby.

When Will I Start Producing Milk?

A mother’s first milk is called ‘colostrum.’ Moms start making colostrum during pregnancy, and it’s ready as soon as baby is born. Colostrum is usually yellow in color and is often referred to as “liquid gold,” because it prepares baby’s system for healthy digestion and builds immunity.

How Often Should I Feed My Baby?

Your newborn needs frequent feedings to grow and feel full. Breastfeed your baby at least 8 to 12 times within a 24-hour period. You should start breastfeeding early—preferably right after delivery. After the first few days, look for about 6 wet diapers per day, and expect three or more stools by Day 4. If baby seems satisfied after feedings, then you’re doing great!

Does Breastfeeding Hurt?

Having the correct latch and position is important for a successful breastfeeding experience. Be sure that both you and baby are in a comfortable and relaxed position before starting. If you’re experiencing any pain, reach out to a breastfeeding expert or call your healthcare provider. If you participate in WIC, call your lactation counselor!

Is It Normal for Breasts to Feel Full and Swollen?

If your breasts feel uncomfortably full, you may be experiencing engorgement. This can be caused by ineffective and/or infrequent removal of milk from the breast, resulting in over-fullness. Moms are encouraged to continue breastfeeding and offer the breast frequently to avoid painful engorgement.

Can I Breastfeed if I Return to Work?

Yes! There are many benefits of breastfeeding after returning to work, including fewer work absences due to infant illness, lower expenses for infant healthcare and lower expenses for infant nutrition. If you plan on returning to work, we recommend that you use a breast pump to express milk throughout the day and maintain your milk supply.

Breastfeeding Support through WIC

WIC participants have valuable access to Peer Breastfeeding Counselors and Lactation Counselors. This support team helps pregnant women and breastfeeding moms achieve their breastfeeding goals. Some of the many benefits of WIC breastfeedin support include:

  • One-on-one counseling with certified breastfeeding peer counselors and/or lactation counselors
  • Call-in support available Monday through Friday
  • Individual and group classes covering breastfeeding benefits, what to expect after baby is born, the differences between breast milk and formula, how dads can get involved in feeding, and much more.

Call your nearest health department to learn how to join WIC!

Learn about our related health services:

Additional Breastfeeding Resources:

USDA Nondiscrimination Statement

In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.

To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at: http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:

(1) mail:

U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410;

(2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or

(3) email: program.intake@usda.gov

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.