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The first week

Skin-to-skin contact
Baby on mother's chest
Positioning - how to hold your baby
Mother holding newborn
What to expect in the first week
baby's hand
Is my baby getting enough milk?
Milk supply in the first week
First aid for sore nipples
Expressing for your newborn
Baby sleeping on mother's chest
Breastfeeding after a caesarean
Explore all our resources

Commonly asked questions

My milk hasn't come in. What can I do?

For some mums it can take a little longer for their colostrum to change into milk and for some, the change may also be more gradual. Holding your baby skin-to-skin is really important to trigger hormones that make milk. Feed your baby as often as you can - whenever they are awake. If your baby isn't feeding from your breast, express as often as you can. Read more about milk coming in

My baby hasn’t regained their birth weight. What can I do?  

It’s normal for babies to lose weight after they are born. If your baby is able to feed from your breasts as often as they want, your supply will build. Keep offering them your breast. ‘Top up’ formula feeds make it harder for a mum to establish her milk supply.

An ABA breastfeeding counsellor can give you suggestions about increasing your supply and avoiding top ups. Find out more about normal weight gains and and how to tell if your baby is getting enough milk.

Should it hurt to breastfeed? 

If your baby is attached well breastfeeding should be comfortable. If you feel pain at any time during a feed, something may not be quite right. You may need to change the way you are holding your baby or your baby’s attachment at your breast. Find out more about getting a comfortable attachment.   

My baby didn’t breastfeed when we were in hospital. Is it too late?  

Sometimes breastfeeding doesn’t go to plan in the first few days but it’s never too late to start. Try holding your baby skin-to-skin as often as possible to trigger milk-making hormones. Your baby will still have instincts to find your breast on their own. Read more about skin-to-skin contact. 

My breasts are swollen and sore. What can I do? 

Your breasts are starting to make milk and for some mums, engorgement can feel uncomfortable, even painful. It may help to feed your baby as often as you can and encourage baby to take a little from both sides each feed. Between feeds, cold packs can relieve discomfort.  Read more on engorgement.

Breastfeeding: a practical guide