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Effective Feeding: What is it?

It takes two. This is an important concept in the early days of breastfeeding, since neither the superior sucking skills of your baby nor the steady supply of your milk can guarantee a successful feeding on its own.

Why not? Because your milk supply, or flow, and your baby's skill are linked and can't be viewed separately. They work in tandem; in other words, an effective feeding is a balanced blend of your baby's skill and your milk flow.

When your milk flow increases your baby feeds better, and vice-versa. That's why when your mature milk comes in at around Day 3, you'll notice a difference in your baby's nursing. Colostrum is low in volume and dense, while mature milk is runny and much higher in volume, making the flow faster and making it easier for your baby to access. However, if your baby isn't using his skills to drink from the breast, all the milk in the world won't make a difference.

Remember that skill and flow go together hand in hand.

Source: Heather Kelly is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC)