Myrtle Hodge RN Lactation Consultant DrMDK.com
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Host: Sometimes it's rare that a mother can't produce breast milk. I have heard you say that, it happens like once every three, four, five years, they don't make any breast milk, is that true? Myrtle Hodge: Yeah, a few mothers that I have met in my practice that were non-producive and in general we know that the majority of women can produce milk; however, there are few moms who do not produce sufficiently, and there may be reasons for that, which we have to investigate. That's where a Lactation Consultant comes in along with Obstetricians, and sometimes depending on what's the mother's medical history, and then there are moms who produces super abundance amount of milk. Again, there is a medical problem involved there, and moms who produce sufficiently for their babies. Host: So you could say in the beginning, you should try to think about breastfeeding by itself, and nothing else, is that correct? Myrtle Hodge: Right. We think of exclusive breast feeding, so in general I recommend that mom's breastfed exclusively for the first six months of life, and then they would go into complementary feeding, along with breastfeeding, into the infant's second year of life. Host: You say that first six months you're talking even giving solid foods, is that correct? Myrtle Hodge: First six months without solid food. Host: I thought you were talking breastfeeding -- Myrtle Hodge: Breastfed, yes. Host: And there was a concern, they think if you give water, the kid will fill up in water, so there are some concerns, shall we only breastfeed and not even give them water? Myrtle Hodge: Right. The breast milk has sufficient water in it, babies do not -- I mean, 90% of it is water. Host: Yeah, okay first time you breastfeed, you should go back and forth, one breast per feeding. What is the best way of getting it done? Myrtle Hodge: It is recommended that babies be fed on one breast until satisfied, because of the composition of milk. I like to explain to moms that when the baby starts eating and the baby is like satisfying the thirst, and to satisfy the hunger, the baby has to get that hindmilk, which comes after, and the longer the baby nurses the more of the hindmilk, which is higher in calories. The fat content is higher. Some studies show that that helps to reduce the Colecchi effect that some babies may have. Host: So you would suggest the first feeding, say you start with the left side, and only that side, and then the next feeding go to the right side, and only that side, and the next feeding of back to the left side, trying to get that breast totally empty, and get that last few ounces of high calorie, high fat breast milk, is that correct? Myrtle Hodge: We want the baby to get that highest calorie out of the breastfeed.