Offering Expert Guidance for Grandparents of Breastfed Babies

Your grandchild will receive the best possible nutrition because they are getting breast milk – and your support will be very important for the parents of your grandchild during this process.

You can count on the lactation consultants at University Hospitals to provide parents and grandparents with the education and resources you need to make a positive difference in the breastfeeding experience.

Benefits of Breastfeeding for Your Grandchild

There is a decrease in the chance that baby will have:

  • Frequent ear infections
  • Asthma
  • Allergies
  • Diarrhea
  • Diabetes
  • Some childhood cancers
  • SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome)

Advantages of Breastfeeding for the Mother

  • Lower risk for type 2 diabetes
  • Lower risk for breast and ovarian cancer
  • Less risk of postpartum depression

What’s Normal for a Baby Breastfeeding?

Your grandchild should feed at least 8 –16 or more times per day. This is because breast milk is easily digested. Baby and mom may seem to be struggling with breastfeeding in the first few days, but given time and practice, feedings will become easier.

How Grandparents Can Help with Breastfeeding

  • Get baby ready to feed by unwrapping and waking the baby for mom.
  • Help stimulate the baby during feedings if needed.
  • Bring fluids for mom since nursing will cause mom to be thirsty.
  • Help with household chores like laundry, cooking, cleaning and grocery shopping.
  • Care for other children in the house.
  • Ask mom what she would like for you to do for her and the baby.
  • Praise mom for doing a good job

Things to Remember About Breastfeeding

  • Breast milk supplies everything my grandchild needs and he/she does not need formula or water.
  • Frequent feedings do not mean my grandchild’s mother is not making enough milk for her baby.
  • Babies cry for other reasons than being hungry.
  • Breast milk is the best nutrition for my grandchild.

Take Advantage of Breastfeeding Support Organizations

If you have other questions, concerns or you and the baby’s mom do not feel that breastfeeding is going well, you can get help from organizations like La Leche League, WIC, Peer Counselors and Lactation Consultants from your hospital or in your community and your grandchild’s pediatrician.

Remember, by you showing support and helping mom with breastfeeding, you will be giving your grandchild the best start possible.

Sources:

Lawrence, Ruth A. & Lawrence, Robert M. “Breastfeeding, A Guide for the Medical Professional.” Eighth edition, ELSEVIER, 2016.