Breast Milk Benefits

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Find free or low-cost resources in Amarillo, including breastfeeding classes, support groups, and lactation consultants.

Breast milk contains hormones and antibodies that help build your baby’s immune system and help lower their risk of developing many childhood health concerns.

In the first few days of milk production after birth, your breasts produce colostrum (a sticky yellow substance) to help protect your baby from infection by building immunities.

Compared to formula, breast milk can be easier to digest for your baby and it even changes over time to meet your baby’s changing needs. Breastfeeding will also save money as infant formula can be costly, especially if your baby needs expensive special formulas for a sensitive stomach.


Breastmilk Counts
Breastfeeding Brochure

Breastfeeding Benefits

Did you know?

The more breast milk your baby consumes, the more milk you will produce. 

Putting your baby to your breast early and often will help your body keep up with your baby’s growing tummy.

  • Breastmilk has all the nutrients your baby needs for proper growth and development
  • It may reduce the risk of ear infections and colds
  • It may reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes, and other diseases
  • It's easier for your baby to digest
  • Breastfeeding can help you recover more quickly from childbirth
  • Breastmilk is always the right temperature, never too hot and never too cold
  • Breastfeeding can reduce your risk for certain breast and ovarian cancers and type 2 diabetes
  • Some moms discover that breastfeeding helps them lose weight after childbirth.

Breastfeeding Resources

Breastfeeding Tips

Sore, Cracked, or Bleeding Nipples

  • Ensure baby has a deep latch and good positioning: Tummy to tummy, baby's head tilted back so baby can open mouth wide, both lips flared out (not curled under).
  • Don't put soap on nipples until they are healed, and let nipples air dry between feedings.
  • Soak nipples in warm saltwater after breastfeeding for a few minutes and allow to air dry. Use 1/2 teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of warm water. Shot glasses work well to soak nipples.
  • Hand express some milk and allow it to air dry on nipples. Breastmilk has antibodies that can prevent infection.

Engorgement

Swollen breasts that slows the flow of milk

Pain usually feels better within 12-48 hours with proper treatment. If pain continues, contact a Lactation Consultant.


  • Encourage frequent feedings (at least every 2 hours) day and night.
  • Take a warm shower and/or use a warm compress just before breastfeeding.
  • Hand expression: Before breastfeeding, use your hands to massage and soften the breast and areola and release some milk.
  • Pumping: If breasts are still firm after breastfeeding and hand expression, you may use an electric pump. Only pump for few minutes until you feel comfortable. Do not pump until breasts are empty; that can cause oversupply (too much milk) and continue the engorgement pain.
  • After breastfeeding and/or pumping: Use ice/cold compresses for 5 minutes.

Plugged Duct

A lump or hard knot in breast
  • Massage area while breastfeeding.
  • Use a warm compress on the area.
  • Continue to empty breasts often.

Mastitis

Breast infection
  • Can look like a with reddened area or red streaks in the breast. You usually run a fever and feel like you have the flu.
  • Continue to breastfeed often. It is important to empty the breasts. The milk is safe for your baby. If you stop breastfeeding, it will slow healing and could lead to a breast abscess.
  • Contact your OB for antibiotics.

Low Milk Supply

  • The best way to make more milk is to frequently empty the breasts. Breastfeed at least 2 hours day and night. If pumping, continue to pump every 2 hours.
  • Ensure baby has a deep latch and good positioning.
  • There are supplements you can take to try to increase supply. Contact a Lactation Consultant for more information.
  • Try Power Pumping: Once per day, one hour per day:
  • Pump for 10-15 minutes, rest 10 minutes.
  • Pump for 10 minutes, rest for 10 minutes.
  • Pump for another 10 minutes.