La Leche League Canada offers support and guidance about breast feeding, including for those with unique circumstances.
Feeding your baby is one aspect of becoming a parent where planning during pregnancy can be very beneficial. But where to begin? It’s not easy to prepare for something you’ve never done before
La Leche League Canada, the not-for-profit, peer-support organization, has been providing
evidence-based breastfeeding information and support for 60 years. Every month across
Canada, La Leche League Leader volunteers host more than 80 meetings allowing parents to
share experiences, information, challenges and successes.
Pregnancy is an excellent time to attend a La Leche League meeting. Meet others who are breastfeeding or planning to feed human milk. Witness it in action, learn favourite tips, and what others wish they had known before their babies arrived. La Leche League also offers a wonderful, online Prenatal Breastfeeding class at no cost to parents. See our virtual calendar for meeting dates and times.
During pregnancy, it can be very helpful to learn the basics like how your body makes milk, how to achieve a comfortable latch, how to encourage plenty of milk, how to know your baby is getting enough and avoid common difficulties. It is also important to establish your support network before your baby arrives. This ensures you have someone experienced in breastfeeding to check in with during those early days and weeks like a lactation consultant, public health nurse, experienced friend or La Leche League Leader
If you have a unique circumstance, whether you are looking for support with chestfeeding, pumping, adoptive nursing, or feeding a child with special needs, we are here to support you on your journey.
Most mothers can also begin expressing early milk, called ‘colostrum’ in the last few weeks of pregnancy. This gives you a chance to practice hand-expression and perhaps save some small amounts of colostrum to offer your baby in the first days, if needed. This can begin to build your confidence even before your baby arrives!
When you do welcome your little one, spending the first hour or more with your baby resting on your chest, skin-to- skin is the ideal way to start. Allowing your baby to find the breast and begin nursing immediately after birth, has been shown to increase milk supply in the days and weeks to follow. It can be useful to know that your baby is born with reflexes and anatomical features that support nursing. For example, most people don’t realize that babies’ noses tip upwards in order to enable breastfeeding! This allows them to get close to the breast without their tiny noses getting in the way and it also permits them to breathe comfortably while snuggled up close to you.
In spite of your best efforts, sometimes things don’t go as you had hoped and breastfeeding gets off to a rocky start. But you can be encouraged to know that the learning you have done during pregnancy can help you as you get things back on track with the help of your experienced breastfeeding support network. La Leche League Leaders and groups are here to help. You can find your local group and Leader contact information on our website. Planning ahead can help you to establish an enjoyable, successful breastfeeding relationship with your baby.