Feeding your baby
As a maternity unit we will support you with your infant feeding choices.
We have worked closely with our mums and have put together some information to help and support you in your infant feeding journey.
Information about infant feeding
Antenatal harvesting or antenatal collection of your colostrum
Mothers produce colostrum in pregnancy, learning how to express colostrum during pregnancy is a useful skill for all mothers. Harvesting your colostrum or antenatal collection is beneficial for you and your baby. Pregnant women can start to express their breast milk from 36 completed weeks of pregnancy. The amount of breast milk you get will vary from a few drops to a teaspoon.
Why express whilst pregnant? Expressing during pregnancy, will mean that you become familiar with your breasts and how they work and make you feel more confident after birth.
- It will give you an understanding of how far your baby’s mouth needs to be on the breast when he latches on.
- If your baby needs encouragement to feed you will be able to express small amounts of colostrum into their mouth or onto their lips.
- If your baby has difficulty feeding or being cared for on a neonatal unit you will be able to express colostrum.
- By becoming familiar with your breast during pregnancy, you will recognise changes in your breast and be able to hand express to avoid problems with engorgement or mastitis.
- Knowledge of how to express milk if you ever need to.
If you would like any further information or support, please speak to your midwife or email: BDG-TR.email@example.com
A guide to breastfeeding your baby
Breastfeeding is a skill that takes time to get the hang of. Lots of mums wonder if their baby's feeding well and getting enough – especially in the first few days.
But once you've mastered it, you'll probably find it's the easiest and most satisfying way to feed your baby.
NHS.uk has lots of helpful information and advice on breastfeeding.
How to support your partner with breastfeeding
If your partner is breastfeeding your baby – or planning to – that’s fantastic because breastmilk has so many benefits for babies. For instance, breastmilk can help to reduce the risk of your baby getting infections and diseases. It also contains hormones that help your baby’s development.
Overall, breastfeeding will have a positive impact on your baby’s health. What’s more, it can influence their health as an adult too.
Guide to bottle feeding
If you're planning to bottle feed with expressed breast milk or infant formula, the Baby Friendly Initiative have tips help you feed your baby and keep them safe and healthy.
If you decide to use infant formula, first infant formula (first milk) should always be the first formula you give your baby. You can use it throughout the first year.
A guide for infant formula and responsive bottle feeding
Bottle feeding as responsively as possible can help support the development of a close and loving parent-infant relationship.
Unicef's Baby Friendly Initiative have a simple, concise guide which provides parents who are bottle feeding with an overview on how to bottle feed responsively and, for parents who are formula feeding, how to choose an infant formula.
Information is available in other languages – please ask your midwife
Building a happy baby
We now know that building a strong relationship between parents and their new baby will give them the best possible start in life and will help them to grow up happy and confident.
Unicef's Baby Friendly Initiative provide information which helps parents to develop that strong relationship, starting in pregnancy and continuing into the early days, weeks and months of a baby’s life.
Caring for your baby at night and when sleeping
Caring for your baby at night and when sleeping covers a range of topics, including getting some rest, night feeding, safe sleeping environments and helping baby to settle.
The information provided by Unicef is endorsed by the Lullaby Trust, the Baby Sleep Info Source (BASIS), the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) and the Institute of Health Visiting (iHV).
Other useful information
Maternity Unit Antenatal/Postnatal ward
01226 432242 - 24 hour access in the first few weeks with your baby
Barnsley Infant Feeding Service – working within the community
01226 775700 – Monday to Friday 9–4pm
07853 893430 – Saturday 9.30–12.30pm
0-19 Service (Health Visiting)
01226 774411 – 9-5pm Monday to Friday
National Breastfeeding helpline
0300 100 0212 – 9.30-9.30pm every day
Out of area breastfeeding support
Breastfeeding in Sheffield
Feeding your baby and climate change
Increasing breastfeeding rates correlates to improved infant and adult health and helps to reduce greenhouse gases and lessen the environmental impact of food alternatives. When compared with breastmilk, milk production uses large amounts of water and has a high carbon footprint.