The first week of August is World Breastfeeding Week, with a focus this year on support for moms.  In honor of World Breastfeeding Week, we’re bringing you a week of posts all about – you guessed it – breastfeeding!  From where to get support to tricks and tips to building supply, we’ve got you covered.

Breastfeeding is awesome: breast milk is full of nutrients for your baby, it’s totally free, and you can’t beat the sweet bond you form with your newborn. But, it isn’t without its own share of hiccups- from supply issues and nipple soreness, to worries about clogged ducts and the threat of thrush. Having a great network of support makes a world of difference. Aside from family and friends, be sure to keep a strong foundation of supporters around you to whom you can turn to whenever any issues or questions about breastfeeding arise. Or for just a shoulder to lean on when the going gets tough.

While in the hospital with your newborn, be sure to take advantage of their team of Lactation Consultants.  No question is too weird/stupid/silly to be asked!  If you want your latch checked, ask (seriously, make sure you DO THIS). If you’re wondering if your boobs are supposed to resemble bags of wet sand and leak constantly, ask (answer: yes, they are). Whatever will set your mind at ease — ASK.

Once you’ve been discharged, continue to take advantage of the hospital Lactation Consultants!  Most hospitals offer to schedule a follow-up visit with the LCs after discharge – take them up on that offer! The follow-up is typically a weigh-in to make sure your supply is up and your baby is eating all that they need to; just having that confirmation that everything is OK and baby is growing is usually enough to set your mind at ease. Hospitals also offer breastfeeding classes regularly. There’s no time limit as to when you are no longer able to meet with a consultant – they’re there to help throughout the duration of your nursing experience!

– The La Leche League of North Carolina has quite a few local groups that meet regularly. They’re a great source of information, support and the perfect place to meet new friends.

Check and see if your baby’s doctor has an LC on staff (many do), or if they know of someone they can recommend to you.

– For online resources, nothing beats the knowledge base at KellyMom.