How to Breastfeed: Tips to Get You Started

By Stacey Feintuch
Reviewed by Terri Major-Kincade, M.D.
February 13, 2023

By now, you’ve surely heard that breastfeeding or chestfeeding is good for babies. The benefits are numerous and genuinely compelling: Breast milk protects newborns from developing illnesses and infections, it supports immunity by transferring antibodies and good bacteria from mother to child, and it helps babies grow healthy and strong. It’s also easily digestible, free, and often (but not always) plentiful.

If you can and decide to do it, it can be good for you, too: Those who breastfeed have a decreased risk of heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer, including breast cancer. What’s more, this protective effect increases over time.

Yet breastfeeding doesn’t always come naturally or easily. This guide will teach you how to prepare, what to expect, and hopefully how to make the process go a little more smoothly.