Newborn and Infant Feeding Support
The Queen Elizabeth Hospital maternity service is committed to providing the highest standard of care to support expectant and new mothers and their partners to feeding their baby and build strong and loving parent-infant relationships (Baby Friendly Initiative 2015).
We believe that all mothers and families should receive support however you decide to feed your baby. In order to make an informed choice, we offer a feeding antenatal class with a choice of venues and times, please ask your community midwife for more information or contact your local childrens centre.
We also know that breastmilk gives your baby the best start in life and there is lots of research which shows that breastfeeding will help to make your baby healthy now and in the future as well as helping to keep mothers healthy too. For more information see https://www.unicef.org.uk/babyfriendly/news-and-research/baby-friendly-research/infant-health-research/
We encourage all mothers to have skin to skin as soon as their baby is born, this helps keep baby warm, regulate the heart rate and breathing and is calming and reassurring for both you and your baby. It also ensures you begin to build a strong bond with your baby and stimulates your baby to want to feed, usually this process takes about an hour for your baby to show an interest in feeding. If you plan to formula feed your baby, we encourage you to feed your baby the first feed whilst holding your baby skin to skin. If you are planning to breastfeed your baby, skin to skin ensures that breastfeeding can get off to a great start, as baby begins its journey to find the breast and begin to suckle.https://www.unicef.org.uk/babyfriendly/baby-friendly-resources/video/meeting-baby-for-the-first-time/
Don’t worry if you cannot have skin to skin straight away, as soon as you or your baby is able, we will encourage you to have that special time in skin to skin and you can do it anytime afterwards, dads too!
We know that all mothers need lots of support, especially in the early weeks. A maternity staff member will be present to help you with the first feed for your baby and if necessary, with subsequent feeds.
Mothers who choose to formula feed, will be offered to be shown how to sterilise, correctly make up formula feeds and how to bottle feed as well given written information. It is important to remember to bring to hospital your chosen “First Milk Formula” and at least 2 bottles; the hospital provides cold water sterilisation tanks for you to use whilst in hospital. See http://firststepsnutrition.org/ for information on formula milks.
Mothers who choose to breastfeed their baby will be shown how to correctly position and attach their baby to the breast, this ensures that baby receives the right amount of milk and prevents problems. You will also be shown how to recognise feeding cues and how to tell that your baby is getting enough breast milk.
The Infant Feeding Specialist Team can help with any complex breastfeeding problems whether this is whilst in hospital or once you are home; you may be referred by your community midwife if you have specific problems.
All midwives and maternity support workers have been trained in breastfeeding management, so they should be able to assist you on your feeding journey.
There are also support groups available in the community that mothers can access via their children’s centres and health visitors. There are some that are specifically available for mothers who are breastfeeding see www.lactationmotivation.com
Infant Feeding Coordinator 01553 613950 Monday-Friday only. Outside of these times, please call Castleacre Ward on 01553 613710
- The Breastfeeding Network: Community Midwife 01553 613613 Ask for Waterlily (MLBU)
- The Breastfeeding Network Helpline 0300 100 0212 www.breastfeedingnetwork.org.ukwww.breastfeedingnetwork.org.uk
- Association of Breastfeeding Mothers: Helpline 0300 330 54533 www.abm.me.ukwww.abm.me.uk
- National Childbirth Trust (NCT): Helpline 0300 330 07000 www.nct.org.uk
- Health Visitor “Just One Number” 0300 300 0123