Why it’s bad advice: Breastfeeding usually starts out tough and then gets easier as time goes on. It can take several days to weeks to feel in balance with meeting the needs of your newborn. Plus, your milk doesn’t come in until two to four days after the birth, so each day brings a new and different adjustment as you transition If you’re struggling, think about getting help from a pro -- problems can be corrected with just a single visit to a lactation consultant.
“A pediatrician told me to let my husband give our LO baby formula at night so I could get extra sleep. Apparently he thought extra sleep would increase my low supply.” -Jessica
Why it’s bad advice: The exact opposite is actually true. Replacing feedings with formula will sabotage your milk supply. That’s because milk supply relies on supply and demand. If you skip a feeding because some well-intentioned loved one wanted to let you sleep, you’re sending the message to your breasts: "Hey, we’re done here. No milk is necessary at this hour.’” And your body, as a result, will make less milk. You don’t want that!
“A friend who’s also a nurse told me to give my baby bottles of water over the summer when it’s hot. She went on and on about how I wouldn’t want to drink milk when it was hot, so obviously baby won’t want to either.” -Taylor
Why it’s bad advice: It’s not a good idea to give your baby water before he’s around six months old. That’s because he could fill up on it and drink less breast milk -- which has the nutrients he really needs. Breast milk is all that your baby needs during the first six months of life. And as far as quenching baby’s thirst, breast milk will do that too. It’s actually made of over 85 percent water, and we highly doubt he’ll turn it down when he’s hungry.
“Someone once told me to scrub my nipples with a washcloth to ‘toughen them up’ for nursing. Um, ouch!” -Jen
Why it’s bad advice: You won’t do much more than make your nipples sore. This is a ridiculous old wives’ tale that seems to persist in some cultures. It’s absolutely unnecessary. The best preparation for breastfeeding is understanding that it is a natural, normal process. Your body is naturally prepping itself for breastfeeding. All you have to do is, well, do it.
“My mother-in-law said that my breasts were too small to give my baby enough milk and that I should give him formula.” -Renee
Why it’s bad advice: There’s actually no correlation between breast size and milk production. Breasts come in all shapes and sizes, and unless you have glandular development issues (which is rare), your breast size will not compromise your ability to produce milk to meet your baby’s needs.
“My friend gave me this advice: ‘Don’t breastfeed. Breastfeeding makes your breasts saggy and gross.’” -Dana
Why it’s bad advice: Research shows that saggy boobs are more likely to result from pregnancy in general than from breastfeeding. Pregnancy and hormones make our breasts victims of gravity. Breastfeeding has little to do with it.
“This week, my mother-in-law and sister-in-law both encouraged me to not breastfeed because it would take up too much of my time and I would end up a slave to my baby and boobs.” -Lanie
Why it’s bad advice: Sure, you’ll find yourself spending a lot of time feeding your baby, but so do bottle-feeding moms. Imagine the time you’ll spend buying formula and bottle gear, and cleaning, sorting, cooling and heating bottles. Plus, breast pumps make it possible to give baby breast milk while you’re away from her, so you don’t have to feel stuck if you want some “me time."
“Drinking beer while breastfeeding will help baby sleep. Yeah, that’s gonna work…." -Carley
Why it’s bad advice: This is a scary and dangerous concept. Why? Alcohol can pass into breast milk like it passes into your bloodstream. Sure, baby will only be exposed to a small percentage of alcohol if you drink, but his body will process it at a slower rate. And rather than help him sleep, it actually could cause sleep problems for baby, not to mention impair his motor development (scary!). But having a glass of wine on a date night with your hubby is okay: The general rule on breastfeeding is, if she can drive a car, she’s okay to feed her baby. But don’t count on it making baby sleep any longer than usual. So if you end up enjoying a glass of chardonnay at dinner, wait at least two to three hours before nursing baby -- just to be safe.
“My father-in-law believes that bottles are better than breastfeeding because ‘ you’ll know if the baby is getting enough.’” -Kelly
Why it’s bad advice: Sure, if you breastfeed, you won’t have the luxury of ounce markings letting you know how much your baby is taking in, but there are ways to know she’s getting enough milk. Make sure she’s happy, gaining weight, looking healthy and wetting between six to eight diapers in a 24-hour period -- and feeding every two to three hours. Then, you’re meeting her needs. And feeding her the healthiest way possible.
What are some tips you've heard that are simply outrageous?