Motherhood truly is a glorious moment, especially for first-time mothers. It is, both rewarding and challenging at the same time—yet at the end of the day, all those moments shared between you and your infant will always be priceless. Of course, this is true regardless of whether your infant feeds on one side. However, that situation can pose a unique challenge.
Breastfeeding is definitely an important part of motherhood—one of the earliest memories you will have when it comes to bonding with your baby. A lot of times, breastfeeding is considered as one of the crucial stages of your infant’s development, and this is one reason why you should breastfeed your infant as much as you can.
Whether you are an experienced mom or a first-timer when it comes to nursing, there are a lot of questions that may arise each time you breastfeed your infant. Today, we will focus on a question that a lot of mothers ask: the question of why sometimes an infant feeds on one side only of a mother’s breasts.
Preferring one breast over the other—is this common?
Most mothers have experienced babies pulling away or becoming fussy each time they nurse, and then find out that their infants prefer one breast over the other when they nurse. This is pretty much common. When your infant feeds on one side of your breast only, it may cause concern, especially for first-time mothers.
Breast Preference: Its Causes
There are a lot of factors that may explain why your infant feeds on one side of your breast. One simple reason: your infant may find it quite hard to latch on to your breast. If your infant notices that there is a slow flow of milk coming from one side of your breast, chances are, he or she will prefer the other breast in order to nurse properly. If you had some surgery done on your breast, there may also be a chance that this can lead to a slower milk flow, making your baby reject it. These are some of the reasons why your infant feeds on one side only of your breast.
Should I be Concerned?
While there is no reason to panic, it’s always important that you try to alternate your infant’s nursing pattern on your breasts. This allows for both of your breasts to produce a steadier milk flow, as well as for you to prevent pain or engorgement from happening on just one side of your breast.
If it Still Persists, What can be Done?
If your infant feeds on one side still and worry about the other side of your breast not producing enough milk, you can try using a breast pump on the other side of your breast so it can continue maintaining a steady flow of milk. You can also try to offer your baby his or her’s least-preferred breast each time you nurse so that he or she can become accustomed to it. Experimenting with the way you carry your baby when you nurse or trying out different breastfeeding positions may also help your infant not to prefer just one specific breast, therefore making it easier for you to nurse alternately and more conveniently.
Photo Credit: Maja