Medical Misconception: Breastfeeding Myths

Each month, a health care professional will weigh in on a health and wellness myth and will explain the real cause behind the malady.

This month, we debunk three common breastfeeding misconceptions.

Myth 1: Breastfeeding comes naturally.
Yes, breastfeeding is a natural process, but that doesn’t mean that it’s intuitive. It takes practice and persistence, and nearly every mother and baby has some sort of issue along the way. A lot of work and effort goes into breastfeeding, but the benefits are numerous for mom and baby. Take a breastfeeding class to familiarize yourself with techniques before you have your baby, and join us for our breastfeeding support groups to share tips and tricks with other moms. Learn more about breastfeeding classes and support.

Myth 2: Breastfeeding always hurts.
Being uncomfortable and sore can be normal as a woman begins to breastfeed for the first few days to weeks, as her body may experience sensitivity from hormones after delivery and is adjusting to the baby nursing frequently. However, if she has consistently painful breastfeeding sessions, it is important that she seeks help from a lactation consultant as soon as possible. Most of the time it is something easy to correct, such as a poor latch or poor positioning of either the baby or the mother.  A lactation consultant will be able to evaluate and help with making the nursing experience as comfortable as possible. In most cases, breastfeeding should not hurt.

Myth 3: I am not producing enough milk.
When it comes to milk production, colostrum (the first milk) is being produced by the mother as early as 26 weeks into her pregnancy and is ready for the baby immediately after birth. This thick liquid is loaded with protein, sugar and antibodies, and it’s helpful with keeping the baby healthy as he or she adjusts to his or her new world.

For the first two days, the baby will only be taking in about 1 teaspoon at each feeding; the size of the belly at this time is only the size of a cherry. Then, between days two and six, the baby will cluster feed or nurse frequently. This frequent nursing is necessary to establish your milk supply and increase the volume of milk for the baby.

Newborns eat anywhere from eight to 12 times a day. Keep a feeding log to determine if your baby is getting enough to eat through breastmilk.

By day four, if the baby is eating eight to 12 times a day, is having six to eight wet diapers and four or more yellow, loose, seedy bowel movements, this is a good indication that he or she is receiving enough milk.

The breastfeeding hotline at Carroll Hospital (410-871-7024) is available to provide support and to get your concerns addressed.

Angela Baublitz, R.N., is a lactation consultant with The Family Birthplace.

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Managing Your Medications

While being active and eating well are key elements to maintaining your health, so is properly managing your medications. However, keeping track of multiple medications and supplements can be a little confusing.

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Tevis Center for Wellness

Located in the East Pavilion of Carroll Hospital, the Tevis Center for Wellness helps our community live healthier lives every day.

Here are five things you may not know about the Tevis Center for Wellness: (more…)

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Roasted Cabbage with Chive-Mustard Vinaigrette

There are lots of ways to incorporate cabbage in your diet, even after St. Patrick’s Day. Roasting vegetables is a heart-healthy cooking technique that produces tasty results. The basic components are a lower-moisture vegetable, some olive oil for water retention and a very high heat. One of the ways to decrease the fat content is to use a brush or olive oil mister to distribute the oil evenly without using more than is needed.

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Prediabetes

Prediabetes is when a person’s blood sugars are higher than normal, but not high enough to be classified as diabetes. More than 86 million Americans, or 37% percent of American adults, have prediabetes — and most are unaware, because there are no symptoms.

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Mexican Pasta Salad with Creamy Avocado Dressing

This covered dish favorite can be made a day ahead of time, with the dressing added up to an hour before serving.  Avocados are good sources of heart-healthy fats, and since this recipe only calls for half, try doubling the dressing and using the extra dressing on grilled vegetables. The acid in the dressing will keep the avocado from browning the way it would if left wrapped in the refrigerator.

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Medical Misconception: Green Mucus Requires an Antibiotic

Each month, a health care professional will weigh in on a health and wellness myth and will explain the real cause behind the malady.

This month’s misconception: Green mucus requires an antibiotic

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Coping with Grief During the Holidays

The holiday season can be especially challenging for those who are grieving. The absence of a loved one can be difficult to deal with during this time. Reflecting on holiday memories can bring both happiness and pain.

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Medical Misconception: Getting the Flu Shot Causes the Flu

Each month, we weigh in on a health and wellness myth and explain the real cause behind the malady.

This month’s misconception: Getting a flu shot causes the flu

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Knowing Your Family Health History

Primary care physician Stephanie Buckley, M.D., of Carroll Health Group Primary Care in Mount Airy, explains why knowing your family’s health history is important for your own health.

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