August 2021 – After the NICU

Jenny R. McCormick, Senior Editor, PreemieWorld

Breastfeeding for preemie moms isn’t just hard in the NICU but it can even translate over into the post-NICU journey. As you are surrounded by moms putting their babies to breast with ease, your breastfeeding journey may look much different. It may be exclusively pumping around the clock or having no milk at all. Let go of the guilt and read on:

  • Advocate: Even if breastfeeding doesn’t happen, remember, YOU are doing the best thing for your preemie by ADVOCATING. Know your options. Research other ways of providing nutrition for your preemie. www.prolacta.com
  • Find Support: Meetings can be a wonderful place for preemie moms to share their breastfeeding challenges. Join Deb Discenza on the Preemie Inspire Network and meet other compassionate moms who get it. https://www.inspire.com/groups/preemie/
  • Breastfeeding Challenges: Seek out additional support. La Leche League Leaders can be a great resource for breastfeeding help and may be able to put you in touch with other mothers who have been through the experience of mothering a preemie. To find local support: https://www.llli.org/get-help/
  • Spend time with a lactation consultant: Lactation consultants are certified in breastfeeding support and can be a wonderful source of information and advice.
  • Everyone’s struggle is different: Remember, just as every NICU experience is unique, so is your breastfeeding experience. Don’t blame yourself if breastfeeding just doesn’t happen. No one else is living your experience. Mothering a preemie is hard enough, don’t let anyone make you feel guilty.

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