Friday, January 26, 2007

Rooming in with baby after birth

I shared my experience about rooming in with baby after birth in a forum a while back and since its appropriate and relevant for this blog aimed at new mothers, I am going to post it here.

First check whether the hospital is breastfeeding friendly. The hospital I delivered in is supposed to be breastfeeding friendly and all the nurses will come and help you to breastfeed if you request. If you are rooming in with your baby, don't be shy to buzz the nurses for help in breastfeeding if you need. Even if its the middle of the night. Must be a bit thick skinned, don't be discouraged even if they give you a black face or some discouraging remarks.

For my first baby who roomed in with me, I did not have much help from the nurses at the time and was at a total loss. The lactation consultants only make their rounds during the day and usually just drop by from room to room at a certain time so it was of not much help to me. By the time I left I still had no idea how to feed my baby. Luckily I found a good paeditrician who gave me support to breastfeed till 17 months. I am one of the unfortunate few whose babies just would not latch on. Support is crucial or I would have failed.

The second time I was a bit more experienced and the same hospital nurses has had a bit more training. My husband, toddler and baby all roomed in with me at night. During the day, I sent hubby and toddler home and discouraged visitors. I only informed close family members and not friends and colleagues. I let baby sleep with me and put him on the breast at every opportunity.

Many nurses came and went to help me put baby to the breast at my request because I was still in pain from the c-section wound but none of them could get baby to latch on. Some commented that my "puting terlalu keras" (nipple was too hard), one even uttered "child abuse" when my baby cried and he was such a loud crier too when put in the nursery for a while. I noticed that the nurses had to make a written record of each feeding session. A number of them recorded that baby breastfed well although he did not latch on at all.

Well thats my experience rooming-in with baby after birth. Hope it helps someone.

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