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lizzy jean photography Archives - Lactation Link

Mom holding newborn baby

Caffeine + Breastfeeding

By | Breastfeeding, Classes

Is it safe to consume caffeine while breastfeeding? I posted a Fact or Fiction about this topic Friday on instagram and many of you had a lot to say!  The Fact or Fiction statement was, “Caffeine should be avoided while breastfeeding.” Here’s a few comments from you guys.

Elizabeth Kallen said, “If I can’t have caffeine after being up all night nursing, then no one is going to get fed, dressed, or loved!”

Bethany Nixon said, “I have heard up to 5 cups regular coffee a day is okay…am I doing that? NO! But if I need a second cup in the afternoon to get over the afternoon slump I will!”

Addison Fagner said, “I don’t know the answer but I do know every time I drink soda, that same night is sooooo hard on my little one! I’ve stopped all caffeine now. Not worth it!”

Here’s my answer to the statement: Fiction.

Based on research studies, very little caffeine actually passes into mother’s milk (1).  Many experts agree that it takes more than 5 cups of caffeinated coffee daily to see effects in the breastfed baby (2).  That is the equivalent of about 300 mg.  Something to keep in mind is that you are aware of each source of caffeine you are consuming.  Examples of caffeine sources include coffee, iced and hot teas, energy drinks, caffeinated soft drinks, and some over-the-counter medications.  Chocolate contains a substance that mimics caffeine and can produce a similar effect in large quantities.

Newborn baby

While these are general guidelines, we know that every baby is different!  It may take a smaller amount to affect some infants.  Here are some symptoms to watch for indicating your infant is overstimulated due to your caffeine intake.

  • Wide-eyed
  • Alert
  • Difficulty staying asleep
  • Unusually fussy

If you are noticing these symptoms, try avoiding caffeine and substituting caffeine-free beverages.  Observe your infant and watch for an improvement.  If the symptoms were due to too much caffeine, your infant should improve within a few days to a week.

I hope this is helpful!  My passion is educating you on all your feeding options so you can reach your goals, whatever they may be!  My video classes are available to click and watch at your convenience.  You can learn in the comfort of you home in your jammies!  Also my classes NEVER EXPIRE! You can watch them over and over.  They also come with a notes outline.  A great promo going out to my newsletter subscribers in the morning.  Sign up to see how to get a free full-size nipple cream from Boob and Baby. The photography in this post is by Lizzy Jean Photography.

Thanks for coming by,

Lindsey Shipley, RN, IBCLC

Lindsey Shipley - Lactation Consultant

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Berlin, C. et al. (1984). Disposition of dietary caffeine in milk saliva and plasma of lactating women. Pediatrics(73), 59-63.
  2. Nehlig, A. and Debry, G. (1994). Consequences on the newborn of chronic maternal consumption of coffee during gestation and lactation: a review. J Am Coll Nutr(13), 1, 6-21.

What to do when baby won’t latch

By | Breastfeeding, Classes, Home/Hospital Visits, Recommended Products

Getting baby latched

There is so much emphasis placed on getting a good latch when breastfeeding.  A good latch will help avoid nipple pain and breakdown, lead to more efficient milk removal and an overall good milk supply.  It is important!  But what happens when, despite great technique and positioning, baby won’t latch?  There are more obvious reasons why certain babies may take a little longer to get the hang of it.  For example: prematurity, a difficult delivery, or an oral abnormality to name a few.  Other times, it can take a full-term healthy baby a little longer to catch on for seemingly no reason at all!  I make sure to teach Moms in my classes what to do when baby won’t latch.  This way, if it ends up happening, they are calm and prepared instead of panicked!

Plan B

If baby won’t latch, it is still important to get them needed calories.  After several hours without a good feed, nursing staff will check blood glucose levels.  If those levels drop low enough, it may even mean admittance to the special care nursery or NICU.  Many times when blood sugar is low the first suggestion is formula supplementation with a bottle.  We know from research that early formula supplementation puts you at a higher risk for early weaning.  From my experience, I’ve found that introducing a bottle early on amidst latching problems only makes things worse.  Here’s an alternative that is low-tech, requires little equipment, and works very well to deliver needed calories without the use of a bottle.

breast hand expression in a hospital

Using hand expression to collect colostrum in a spoon

mom feeding baby with a spoon

Delivering expressed colostrum via a spoon

mom and baby eating

Sometimes, offering a few drops of colostrum on a spoon is enough to coat babies tongue, and stimulate them to latch on.  Other times it may take several feeds of delivering the colostrum this way, coupled with frequent attempts at the bare breast to get a good latch.

mom getting help to breastfeed her child

Latching baby to breast

mom swaddling her baby

baby swaddled in a blanketI hope this helps!  One Mom told me, “I’m so glad I took your class!  It took several days for my baby to latch on properly.  The whole time I was relaxed and prepared because I knew how to feed my baby in the meantime while keeping my goal of exclusive breastfeeding in mind.” ~ Maddie

I’m here to help you reach your goals, whatever they may be!  I’m here to provide all the research and options, but I’m a firm believer that “Mama Knows Best”.  I love when Moms tell me that my classes helped them have a good breastfeeding experience.  Breastfeeding Basics is available in-person in Highland, UT (upcoming dates 11/14 and 12/10) and all 3 of my video courses are available to view individually or in a bundle.  The video courses come with an outline for note-taking.  They also never expire and can be watched over and over!  Come say hi on instagram today! The nursing pillow I use in my consultations is from Ergobaby and the photography in this post is by Lizzy Jean Photography.

I’ve created this great e-mail course to help you get breastfeeding started on the right foot! Click the image below for more info.

6-day

Thanks for coming by today,

Lindsey head shot

~ Lindsey, RN, IBCLC

lindsey@lactationlink.com