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What to Expect When Breastfeeding a Newborn Baby

Wondering what to expect when breastfeeding a newborn baby? Having spoken to friends, breastfeeding is a little like pregnancy in that every woman’s experience is different to another’s. It can also be vastly different from when you breastfed your last baby.

What to Expect When Breastfeeding a Newborn Baby

You’ll never be completely prepared but here are some of the things I’ve experienced breastfeeding a newborn baby:


1.  Sore Nipples

I’ll start with the most obvious breastfeeding a newborn one.

As we all know, this can go with the territory of breastfeeding for a lot of new mums. In the early days, spend time with your midwife or lactation consultant getting your latch right. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and advice at any stage of your breastfeeding journey.

Your nipples will probably be sore for a few weeks so invest in Lansinoh cream – I think it’s amazing! It’s BPS and BPA free, 100% natural, hypoallergenic and really helps soothe sore and cracked nipples. You can buy it here.

Bear in mind that you will spend the first few weeks learning to breastfeed. If it’s your second baby, you will spend your first few weeks re-learning to breastfeed! I did anyway.

2.  A Numb Bum

You’ll spend a lot of time sitting down when breastfeeding so get comfortable! That means ensuring, before each feed, that you’re stocked up on water, snacks, the TV remote, iPad, magazines etc.

If you want to invest in one, I highly recommend glider nursing chairs. I had the Kiddicare Cloud Nine Deluxe Glider Chair and Stool and I highly recommend it. Similar here.

It’s so important to be relaxed and comfortable when breastfeeding so no hunching over on an uncomfortable chair – you could be sat still for hours in the early days!

3.  Wardrobe Malfunctions

As if it isn’t difficult enough deciding what to wear in the early days of breastfeeding, you finally settle on something practical but stylish and then your baby barfs all over it.

Try to keep a spare top in your changing bag if you can. Or a cardigan to cover the stain until you get back home.

I also highly recommend investing in some good quality muslin cloths to throw over your clothes in an emergency.

4.  Gigantic Humungus Mahoosive Boobs

Just me? Invest in some decent nursing bras that fit well and are really supportive. I definitely recommend you get professionally fitted.

You might also have to get resized as the weeks and months go on as your body will continue to change as you breastfeed and if you lose any more baby weight.

5.  Unwanted Opinions

Everything from “Are you feeding that baby again?” to “Isn’t your Mummy feeding you enough?”.  From the same person, in the same breath.

Some people (a minority, thankfully) seem to think that you choosing to breastfeed in front of them gives them permission to go to town with their unsolicited opinions and ‘advice’.

Try your very best to ignore them. Turn your baby’s white noise app on full volume to drown them out if you have to!

Helpful advice is a wonderful, priceless thing but criticism and negativity isn’t going to help you relax and feed your baby.

As a first time mum I made the mistake of letting the negativity in and sometimes getting upset. Second time around, I’m was ready for them!

Read next:

How did breastfeeding go for you?


What to Expect When Breastfeeding a Newborn Baby - Love from Mim

Do you have any advice for first-time mums on what to expect when breastfeeding a newborn baby?



  1. Adrianna
    / 7:15 pm

    Great post! Thank you for this useful tips!
    It is so hard if you go through this the first time, the self-confidence about parenting comes with the second child, at least it has been like this for me.
    I had problems with breastfeeding my first child, so my advice for first-time breastfeeders is to find some emergency baby formula. Just in case.

  2. BeBeWellness
    / 10:57 am

    Unfortunatly I’ve experienced all of those. I’ve found finding breastfeeding friendly clothes almost impossible – especially in this heat! It’s so sad that some breastfeeding mummies feel like they’re being judged for doing it in public, I’ve had the odd occassion I’ve felt uncomfortable but my child is my priority!

    • / 7:31 pm

      You’re absolutely right – feeding your baby is the number 1 important thing :) x

  3. Hannah mum's days
    / 4:32 pm

    Ah, brestfeeding, how I don’t miss thee! My thing that I didn’t expect was needed to use a nipple shield for about 3 months, we had about a million around the house so they were always on hand and I was forever cleaning them. The bonus was that I didn’t get the sore nipples though! Thanks for linking up xx #TheList

    • / 9:45 pm

      Thanks lovely – I used those too with my first! x

  4. Joanna @mumbalance
    / 7:43 am

    I’ve found breastfeeding really easy with my first. No sore nipples, no huge boobs, no need to burp and he only ever fed for about 5 minutes (I worried to start with, but it seemed it was all he needed). I am now expecting my second and I am a little worried. I had a great pregnancy first time round, but this second pregnancy is much more uncomfortable and troublesome. In a way I am expecting breastfeeding to be more problematic as well.

    • / 10:53 am

      Ah I think you’re going to be just fine – you know exactly what you’re doing and it will come to naturally for you again I bet :) x

  5. Rosie @ Little Fish
    / 3:40 am

    Great tips – these will be very useful for first timers. No one told be just how HARD it would be in those early days. I thought it would just come naturally, but I was so ready to quit after a few days. Sheer determination to succeed made me keep at it though and of course it got so much easier after a few weeks! My advice would be, stick at it, if you can, for a few weeks because it does get so much easier after that. (Though always do what’s right for you and definitely ignore the booby critics!) x

    • / 3:52 pm

      Me too – it was a shock how hard it was and I’m so glad I persevered too :)

  6. Amy @ Very Much So...
    / 8:03 pm

    This is a great list, I was definitely not prepared for the numb bum! Haha, thankfully after 15 months none of these are really an issue anymore but having to deal with feeding an easily distracted toddler brings its own pain. I found a top called a breastvest the best thing ever. It meant I could wear almost anything I wanted and didn’t expose my stomach whilst feeding. #TheList

    • / 3:52 pm

      Thanks Amy! I’ll have to check out the breastvest :)

  7. Helen
    / 8:38 am

    Unfortunatly I’ve experienced all of those. I’ve found finding breastfeeding friendly clothes almost impossible – especially in this heat! It’s so sad that some breastfeeding mummies feel like they’re being judged for doing it in public, I’ve had the odd occassion I’ve felt uncomfortable but my child is my priority, not the judgemental people! #TheList

    Helen x

    • / 3:53 pm

      You’re so limited on what you can wear breastfeeding, especially in the heat like you say! :)

  8. / 1:57 am

    Oh the unwanted opinions! Done it twice though, so clearly I ignored them! #thelist

    • / 3:53 pm

      Ha ha that’s the best thing to do – ignore them! :)

  9. Hannah mum's days
    / 8:48 pm

    Aww one of best mum friends is currently going through this – I had all but forgotten what it was like but just seeing her face as he latched on brought it all rushing back! I refrained from any opinion I might add ;) This is her second so she’s managed to dodge the booby expert patrol quite skilfully this time too!

    Thanks for linking up to #TheList xx

    • / 3:54 pm

      Oh those early days of breastfeeding – OUCH! Nothing prepares you! :)

  10. Adventures of a Novice Mum
    / 11:13 am

    I’ll be using a nipple cream from the get to next time round. I tell you, if only we know what we know in hindsight beforehand – does that make sense? I also wish I knew more about the importance of good nursing bras before I had my first.

    Good points for new mums. :-) #TheList

    • / 3:55 pm

      That’s a good idea – hindsight really IS a wonderful thing! :)

  11. Mumma McD
    / 12:49 pm

    Oh I remember those early days! The sore boobs, the engorged boobs, the leaky boobs! I’m still breastfeeding my almost 2 year old, and while those things have calmed down, I now have to deal with having toy trucks driven across my chest while he’s feeding, fingers up my nose, and ‘niplash’ when he turns his head to watch TV while still attached to me!

    • / 3:56 pm

      Ha ha – the boobs take over you body and your life until you get used to it all! Oh gosh I’ve experienced ‘niplash’ – NOT fun!

  12. / 9:58 pm

    Fab post – remember so much of this, especially the huge boobs (how do some women cope with them permanently). Thanks for linking up with #SundayStars

    • / 3:56 pm

      Oh thanks lady!! :)

  13. / 7:23 am

    Hi Mim. Like you I think that the criticism side of things is so much easier the second time round. First time we are more unsure of ourselves as mothers (in general, not just breast feeding) so it is easy to take the criticism to heart). By second baby, most of it just washes off. Great Post. #sundaystars

    • / 3:58 pm

      That’s so true – I listened to them all first time – not now! :)

  14. Mama, My Kid Doesn't Poop Rainbows
    / 9:33 am

    It was a disaster for me. I’d add try not to put too much pressure on yourself and seek help from a lactation consultant, if needed, to your great list.


    • / 3:56 pm

      That’s such good advice – to GET advice from an expert :)

  15. Emily
    / 8:50 am

    Oh I found myself nodding along to every one of this. Three months in and I’m still trying to remember the whole take-a-spare-outfit malarky.

    #sundaystars x

    • / 3:57 pm

      I forget all the time, I’ve kind of accepted I’ll always be covered in sour milk! :)

  16. Betty and the Bumps
    / 7:25 am

    I couldn’t get a nursing bra to fit me (I was 32HH before pregnancy so it was always going to be difficult) so my boobs have really really suffered after 10 months of feeding and then weight loss. I’ll know for “next time”, though, that a wired plunge bra with moulded cups worked for me ultimately. x


    • / 3:58 pm

      Ah nursing bras are so unusual, I ended up being a totally different size to normal when I finally got measured. :)

  17. Tanita
    / 2:16 pm

    Yes! Sore nipples, numb bumb, and definitely investing in a some muslims, they always come in handy for many other things like on the pushchair! I no longer have a breastfeeding baby so i actually use mine for drying my dishes! They dry them so well! I had so many that i never used so at least i am putting them to good use now! x

    • / 4:01 pm

      Muslins are wonderful – they can be used in a million ways! :)

  18. Clare
    / 9:44 am

    I love this post. I have 3 boys, but only properly attempted breastfeeding my newest little chunk. I actually loved it but struggled so much and had to stop at 4 weeks once I got some serious sore nipples, mastitis in one breast and a bad case of thrush on the other. I was distraught when I stopped but I was avoiding feeding time so much it was unfair on the little one. The advice I got from the professionals was helpful but every time I showed them how I was doing it, they said the latching on etc was fine so I couldn’t understand why everything wouldn’t ‘work’ when they weren’t there. It was a very stressful time but I felt like a bit of a failure when I had to stop. (even though I knew it was time to). And after the initial painful boobs I don’t half miss being about two sizes bigger than normal :) x

    • / 4:00 pm

      4 weeks is AMAZING! And you did so well to nurse through mastitis and thrush too! You should be so happy with what you achieved :) Oh I want my big boobs to shrink ha ha! :)

  19. Elizabeth (Wander Mum)
    / 9:39 am

    Great post! It’s flipping painful the whole breastfeeding thing – to start with!! But my advice would be to persevere! It’s so, so worth it. It’s easier than bottles and my baby weight went pretty quickly. I struggled on and off for eight weeks and then it just clicked. I invested in a specially designed nursing cover which was brilliant and meant I wasn’t flashing my boobs when out and about and it looked very discreet. #thelist

    • / 4:01 pm

      Oh that’s so true for me as well – I’m so glad I kept going first time around when it finally clicked :)

  20. casey
    / 5:07 am

    I just went through all of this last fall for the third time. I think the post partum period is so difficult! I just want to stay in the house, I didn’t want any visitors, because honestly, it’s uncomfortable after giving birth, my home was a wreck, latching was awful and difficult. And then one day you wake up and your nipples don’t hurt as bad and you feel like you can take on the world a little bit more. Great post!

    • / 9:24 am

      Wow wee 3 babies! Thanks so much :) :)

  21. Kerry
    / 7:45 am

    Great post! I wasn’t prepared for the sore nipples.. Mine ended up dripping with blood! Eek! Never again please! haha #brilliantblogposts x

    • / 9:23 am

      Ha ha thanks lovely! :)

  22. Lynne Huysamen
    / 7:26 am

    Great post, very helpful hints. I could have done with reading this just before I had my first baby instead of a few months after weaning my 2nd baby.

    • / 9:22 am

      Ah thank you so much! :)

  23. Katie Heels and Hooves
    / 5:30 pm

    Thanks honey – Good to know what I’m in for! And some great tips in here too xx

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I acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land I work and live on, the Awabakal peoples, and pay my respects to Elders past and present.
I thank them wholeheartedly and express my love and gratitude for the privilege to live and work in such a beautiful part of the world and for the opportunity for my family to be part of this vibrant and supportive community.