Monday, August 4, 2008

Books about Breastfeeding

There are so many books about breastfeeding - here are a few that I've read, most of which are in my birth class library:

Breastfeeding: Pure and Simple (2000)
Gwen Gotsch

Book Description: Offers information and inspiration that mothers need to begin breastfeeding and to continue for many months. It gives concise answers to common questions and provides practical solutions for problems mothers encounter such as avoiding sore nipples, dealing with newborn jaundice, breastfeeding after a cesarean, deciding when and how to wean, starting solids and finding time for mothers.

My Note: An easy-to-read, brief but complete book published by La Leche League International. There are lots of helpful pictures too (in black and white, and a little dated, but still worthwhile).




Breastfeeding Your Baby (1995)
Sheila Kitzinger

From Publishers Weekly: With a simple, short explanatory text and some 200 photographs (approximately 100 in color) of nursing mothers, the author of The Complete Book of Pregnancy and Childbirth sets out to dispel fears about breastfeeding and conveys practical advice about positioning the baby, interpreting the baby's sucking rhythms, maternal nutrition and breast care. The most valuable parts of the book, however, are not on honing "technical skills" but those that treat aspects of the intimate communication between mother and baby--during breastfeeding and beyond.

My Note: This is an excellent book – providing reassurance and practical information about breastfeeding. I wish I’d had it when I started nursing Madelyn! Another good book for dads to look at.

Don’t Miss: The photographs are wonderful – if nothing else, flip through this book together. The whole book is terrific.




So That’s What They’re For: Breastfeeding Basics (2005)
Janet Tamaro

From Ingram, about an earlier edition: Filling the gap left in a market glutted with dated or dry books on breastfeeding, So That's What They're For! lends support and encouragement to those wondering whether they should try breastfeeding, for pregnant women who are sure they will breastfeed and for new moms who are having trouble and are considering stopping. With hilarious anecdotes and wonderful illustrations, this comprehensive guide offers a supportive, pragmatic view from the real world.

My Note: This book does not sacrifice realistic, helpful information about breastfeeding by also including humor. A great read – maybe a book on breastfeeding dads might enjoy skimming as well.

Don’t Miss: 29 reasons to breastfeed; Chapter 4, “Getting Ready for the Big Arrival” explains what to do to get the best start breastfeeding and what to expect those first few days at the hospital; Chapter 5, “Directions: Inserting Breast A into Mouth B” gets down to the basics of breastfeeding; you can find information about breastfeeding challenges in both Chapters 6 (“The First Few Days: Tackling Common Obstacles”) and 9 (“Problems: From Small Ones to Big Ones”).




The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding (2004)
La Leche League International

From Amazon.com, about an earlier edition: The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding is a comprehensive resource guide providing just about everything you need to know about how--and why--to breastfeed your baby. Latch on to this book for step-by-step guides to early months, common concerns, problems, and weaning. Additional sections on general nutrition, sleep issues, going back to work, discipline, and fathering are useful for all breastfeeding mothers.

My Note: This book is about so much more than breastfeeding, The information on breastfeeding is excellent, even though it doesn’t include a lot of illustrations/photos.

Don’t Miss: Chapters 4 (“Your Baby Arrives”) and 5 (“At Home with Your Baby”) for basic information. The section on your baby’s nursing style (pgs. 71-73) is also helpful. Many other topics about breastfeeding and baby care are also thoughtfully covered.




The Nursing Mother's Companion (2005)
Kathleen Huggins, R.N., M.S.

Product Description from Amazon.com: Breastfeeding may be natural, but it is not always instinctive. The 20th Anniversary Edition of this classic guide to breastfeeding, beloved by a generation of women, has been completely revised and updated to provide even more practical, reassuring advice and support for today's expectant and nursing mothers. Easy-reference survival guides help identify and resolve problems at each stage. An appendix on drug safety is a unique feature among breastfeeding books.

My Notes: I have an earlier edition (4th), and what stands out about this books is the practical way in which it has been organized, and the complete, reassuring information it provides. I especially like the appendix "The Safety of Drugs During Breastfeeding" and how the book is organized by time - preparing during pregnancy, the first week, the first two months etc.




Nursing Mother, Working Mother (2005)
Gale Pryor

Product Description from Amazon.com: The World Health Organization, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and other authorities on maternal-infant health all recommend breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months of a baby s life and continued breastfeeding through one to two years of age (or for as long as mother and baby desire). For working mothers of infants (more than half of all new mothers) meeting this goal can be challenging. The newly updated Nursing Mother, Working Mother offers you practical and reassuring advice on everything from choosing the right pump in every situation, to securing lactation space and respect at the workplace, to instructing childcare providers on feeding pumped breast milk, to continuing breastfeeding even when your job requires business travel. It also includes information on changes in workplace laws. As a breastfeeding mother, you need guidance and support to combine breastfeeding with your working life, and the reassuring and informative revised edition of Nursing Mother, Working Mother assists you at every step.

My Notes: Sounds like this new edition is great! The edition I have is good too, with information organized by time-frame - "life on leave: the fourth trimester", which discusses the time mom has before returning to work; lots of preparation information for returning to work; and then the final chapter on returning to work. This is a very encouraging, supportive book with specific suggestions and advice for moms who will be working outside the home after baby is born.




Adventures in Tandem Nursing (2003)
Hilary Flower

Book Description from Amazon.com: Book Description
There is no doubt about it—when breastfeeding and pregnancy overlap, the questions abound! In this, the first full-length book ever on the topic of tandem nursing, Hilary Flower gives comprehensive and in-depth answers to a wide range of questions related to breastfeeding during pregnancy and tandem nursing.
Drawn from a great reservoir of mother wisdom, this book pools the stories of over 200 mothers from around the world. Extensive reviews of medical research and discussions with experts in the fields of nutrition, obstetrics, and anthropology have provided the author with a thorough understanding of what we know and what we can surmise on this important topic. Each mother’s experience will be a one-of-a-kind adventure, full of surprises and choices. Adventures in Tandem Nursing provides an essential source of support, humor, and information for the journey.

My notes: This book was the reassurance for me while I nursed my first child during my second preganancy, and tandem nursed for almost a year. While I had the support of my midwife, and the child(ren)'s pediatrician, none of my friends had tandem nursed before... so this book filled a gap for me. There is lots of practical information, as well as stories and pictures from other tandem nursing moms. I especially loved the pictures, which I shared with my daughter, which helped her understand that she was going to be sharing her beloved "goody milk" with her new baby brother. I highly, highly recommend this resource for moms who nursing during pregnancy and/or beyond.




Mothering Your Nursing Toddler (2000)
Norma Jane Bumgarner

Book Description from Amazon.com: The classic handbook for mothers who breastfeed their children past infancy in an updated expanded edition. Norma Jane Bumgarner puts the experience of nursing an older baby or child in perspective, within the context of the entire mother-child relationship. She cites biological, cultural, and historical evidence in support of extended breastfeeding and shares stories gleaned from thousands of families for whom breastfeeding and natural weaning have been the norm.

My notes: I don't own this book, but borrowed it several times from various sources. I remember finding it very reassuring and useful.




There is also excellent breastfeeding information in several of the Sears' books: The Baby Book (2003) and The Breastfeeding Book (2000).

I highly recommend reading through one or two books about breastfeeding during the end of pregnancy. Even if you're not sure you want to try breastfeeding, you have some information if you need it. Most of these books are available in excellent condition for less than $5 on amazon.com through their used book sellers - some sell for less than $1, so are less than $5 including s&h. Most are also available through the Maine library system, though you may need to request what you're looking for if it isn't at your particular library. Either way, the book(s) that can help you during the breastfeeding process are available for minimal investment.

If I've left off your favorite breastfeeding book, go ahead and add it in the comments - I'm always looking for new ideas for my library!

Happy reading!

Christina @ Birthing Your Baby
Independent Childbirth Classes in Central Maine

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