Breastfeeding tips: When your baby bites

mom-1006328_640

The pain a mother feels doesn’t end at giving birth. It continues when the milk starts coming out (or not coming out when milk ducts are clogged) and when you start breastfeeding. But when you get to feed your baby and the latch is just perfect, the pain goes away. Until your baby’s teeth come out! Yayks!

But wait! It shouldn’t be the end of your wonderful breastfeeding journey. There are several things (according to several pages I clicked and read on the web) you can do before deciding to finally wean your baby. WHO advises to breastfeed babies up to two years and it has a lot of benefits (which we can discuss in another post), so don’t give up just yet.

First, it helps to understand why your baby starts biting.

“Older” baby, say around 6 months old, gets easily distracted and he forgets that your nip is still on his mouth. So when he closes his jaws… ouch!

He may also start biting when he’s done feeding, so when you notice that his jaws are relaxing, take it as a cue to pull your breast off his mouth. Also be alert when he’s dozing off, because he may bite you when he falls asleep. Unintentionally, of course.

And your baby is naturally curious as he learns more about his world. That’s why your baby might bite just to know what happens. At 6 months old, babies begin to learn cause and effect. Your startled reaction when he bites, your shout, may make him more curious and he may repeat the biting to see what will happen. My little one has bitten me one day for at least five times because I always get startled when he does that!

Don’t fret, you can try some tips on how to make your baby stop biting.

Recognize the signs that he’s done feeding or he’s falling asleep so you know when you can pull him off.

Calmly take him off and stop feeding for a while immediately after he bites. Look your baby in the eyes and firmly say something like “No biting.” It is to teach him that biting is not good. Every time I do this and tell my baby “No biting. No milk, masakit,” he would look me in the eyes too and smile! That’s worth the pain. How can you not melt when your baby smiles at you?

He may also need more attention, so make eye contact and speak to him while he’s feeding.

Babies can also feel bored, so try to feed in different positions. (Easier said than done, I know!)

And what to do when you’re scraped and your nipple is sore?

Put some ice before and after feeding to numb the pain. Express a small amount of breastmilk, apply to the area and let it air dry. Breastmilk actually has healing properties and antibacterial.

You can also apply warm compress to the area for a few minutes to ease your discomfort and aid the healing. Go bra-less and wear light fabric to lessen friction.

Try not to feed your baby on that side for a while to allow the abrasion to heal. Hand-express your milk (or pump, if you prefer) so that your breast won’t be engorged.

Lastly, hold on to the fact that the pain, no matter how excruciating it may feel, will be gone before you know it. Mine is still healing after a week… but that’s just because I keep feeding my baby on that side! He-he.

Have some tips on how to deal with baby biting while breastfeeding? Sound off comments below!

Life at the moment

The past year has been a whirlwind of change. I got married. I gave birth. I quit my job.

Now I stay at home to take care of my son. I still work (salamat sa mga online gigs), madalas habang kandong si baby, hawak ng isang kamay, habang ang kabilang kamay ay nagta-type sa keyboard ng laptop. Yung 8 hours ko dapat na trabaho, stretched. Kasi in-betweens, babysitting mode. Diskarte sumingit ng trabaho pag nakatulog na ang bulilit.

Miss ko na rin magtrabaho sa office. Magdress up. Magwork ng diretso (aka makapagconcentrate) at yung may nakakausap na officemates face to face. Isa lang ang di ko namimiss–traffic. Haha.

But I wouldn’t exchange this opportunity to stay at home and watch my son grow up. Nakakaaliw pala ma-witness ang every milestone ng isang baby. Yung unang smile (as in hindi na reflex lang), yung unang beses na mag-coo sya na para bang kinakausap ka at gustung-gusto na magsalita. Yung first attempt na magroll-over tapos gumapang. Music sa pandinig mo yung halakhak nya na everytime maririnig mo ay mapapatawa ka na rin. Priceless.

At ang dami kong mga natutunan at narerealize now that I’m a mom. Una na siguro yung mas ma-appreciate ang mga nanay. Juskolerd, napakasakit manganak. At hindi lang dun natatapos ang pain. Masakit din magbreastfeed lalo na kung mali ang latch ng littleone mo. Masakit pag di makalabas ang milk, kasi punung-puno na ang milk ducts mo. Masakit yung antok na antok na antok ka na, pero wala kang choice dahil iiyak si baby pag binaba mo. Anyway, I’ll write about them more properly next time. This already sounds as whining, but there’s a “But” for all of these. Hehe. The experience is very fulfilling in the long run.

You think staying at home gives you plenty of time. Much for taking care of your kid, but only for that. Haha. I have tons of household chores that I want to attend to (what’s with all the other stuff I still haven’t unpacked since we moved?) Guess they can wait. My baby can’t.😛

Gusto ko pa rin magsulat. At sabi nga nila, if you want to write, write. Make time.

Who would’ve thought

She: I love you so much. That’s all I can say because I don’t really know how to explain what I’m really feeling right now. I am very happy! You know that feeling that your chest is going to explode because of so much happiness it can’ contain? I often find myself smiling on my own. Because I didn’t expect this. I didn’t know that the person who was always in my diary, would be here in front of me now.

He: I told you, I’ve been loving you for so long. Even though we haven’t seen each other for some time, I always think of you. I watch your videos and look at your pictures. And I thought, there’s probably no hope that we’re going to be together. What’s with all that you are right now. But here we are now. I guess it’s just that God’s timing is always perfect.

My five cents on motivating yourself and setting your ultimate goal

Keeping yourself motivated at work (and life in general) sometimes is a challenge. Especially when people around you are not happy and you feel burned out. There came a time that I had difficulty motivating myself. It felt like I was not meant for my current role and I started asking myself, “Could I take more of these heartbreaks I get? Is this what I want? Is it worth it? Can I really be good at it?” And it made motivating others a lot harder.

So I asked one of my mentors what motivates him. He shared that he has a vision of what he wants to be and everything he does now and all the decisions he makes are in line with what he wants to achieve in the long run. He is also motivated of having visible results and leaving a legacy.

It makes sense. If you know that what you’re doing builds the road that will lead you to your ultimate dream, you have the drive to go on and on, no matter what hardship comes along the way.

Then he asked me why the question. It was because I’ve been thinking about what I really wanted to do with my career and couldn’t really come up with anything certain. I felt like it’s about time I had this figured out so that my current moves will be in line with that goal.

I read somewhere that you should think about your passion, something that you’d be so willing to do even without getting paid (because money will just follow). You can also ask yourself a series of questions that start with “What makes you happy?” My first answer is, I want to make other people happy. (Not as a comedian, of course. I’m poor with punch lines and I have stage fright.) And then I’m stuck!

Who in particular? How do you define happy? Are you the one to define it or the other people? These are some of the questions he suggested to further refine the first one.

Aside from what makes you happy, you also have to look at your means and talent. Sometimes it is a decision of what you want to be, my mentor said. Consider your strengths and how you can utilize them and contribute to a greater purpose. It’s like being realistic in a sense. Ah, and create a vision board. It helps.

It’s true. Once I have decided on the path I will take, I was able to lay down some concrete plans in order to get there. Sometimes self-doubt would sneak in, but gone were the days when I feel like I’m stuck somewhere wasting time. So just make that decision and keep going on. It’s not going to be easy, but I believe if you put your faith in it, it’s going to be worth it.

“In this world, there is no such thing as a foolish dream.” ~Dream High

Feeling pro for a day

Recently, I had a very short stint as a photographer. My childhood best friend is getting married and she asked me to do a pre-nup shoot for them. I was recommending my friend who had more experience with photoshoots, but Maribel said her fiance would be too shy. I warned them that I am so amateur, but I couldn’t say no. I had to borrow a DLSR and rely on my stock knowledge from my college photography class. So in short, it pushed through.

Our venue: UPLB. Theme: vintage. Even before the day of the shoot, I can already picture in my head some frames I would take. I was silently praying I could pull them out. Hehe.

We started shortly after noon. It was hot. But I was thankful for the shades of the trees and the wind blowing. And thanks to our two girl friends and my boyfriend for assisting me on how the couple should pose for the camera, and the couple for being cooperative and not maarte. After around a hundred frames, we decided it’s already a wrap. And of course, time to eat!

It was exhausting. But it was a fun experience!

Anyway, here are my favorite frames.🙂

wpid-maribelemman14.jpg.jpeg

wpid-maribelemman17.jpg.jpeg

wpid-maribelemman25.jpg.jpeg

wpid-maribelemman27.jpg.jpeg

teaser1_edited-1