7 Breastfeeding Myths Totally Busted
Good news for A cups
Boobs. They used to be, at best, a fun accessory and, at worst, an annoyance when jogging. But now that you have a baby, they're so, so much more.
Since everyone from your sister-in-law to supermodels seems ready to sound off on the subject of breastfeeding, we’re here to lay down the nursing knowledge--so you can tune out all the noise.
Myth: Your Milk Will Come in 3 Days PostPartum
The truth: not so much. To all the moms who have cried, holding screaming babies while their boobs just sat there like useless Koosh balls, hear this: For as many as 25 percent of mothers, noticeable milk production takes longer than three days. Colostrum--the early, nutrient-rich, disease-thwarting stuff--is present in your breasts from midway through pregnancy. But since you likely can’t see it and it’s not easy to express, it can feel like your baby is getting next to no nutrition. Chill. In the first few days, those tiny drops are likely all their tiny tummies can handle--and all they need.
Myth: Breastfeeding Helps You Lose Weight
The truth: Yes. But also no. Though every celeb with a slammin’ “body after baby” seems to owe her whittled waistline to breastfeeding, nursing can actually require you to keep on an extra ten pounds or so. Yes, you do burn 300 to 500 calories a day doing it, but don't be surprised if you need to eat more to compensate.
Myth: If you don’t breastfeed, your baby will be sicker and dumber
The truth: While breastfeeding has been shown to benefit cognitive development, studies have also demonstrated it has zero impact on IQ. That’s right: Zero. And while it can protect babies from disease while they’re at the breast, it would take 5,400 hours of nursing to prevent a single ear infection. The bottom line? Nursing can only help; but formula feeding certainly won’t hurt.
Myth: If you bottle feed, you won’t bond
The truth: Nonsense. There are plenty of ways--from eye contact to skin-to-skin snuggling--to bond with your baby while holding a bottle, whether it’s full of formula or pumped milk.
Myth: Your boobs will become gigantic
The truth: No matter what Kim Kardashian says, you may only go up a cup size. And the idea that bigger boobs equal more milk? Bogus. Breast size has no bearing on milk production (A cups rejoice!).
Myth: It’s supposed to hurt
The truth: For the first 10 to 15 seconds, OK, maybe. But if you’re white-knuckling it through every feed, something’s wrong. Seek out a lactation consultant for help with any number of likely, fixable problems.
Myth: It’s illegal to nurse in public
The truth: It’s legal, baby. Well, everywhere but Idaho. (Hey, Idaho. What’s up with that?)