E-newsletter for Dorset Real Baby Milk Peer Supporters
Real Baby Milk CIC

HAPPY NEW YEAR to you all

Thank you for everything that you do to support breastfeeding women throughout Dorset – your continued commitment is invaluable and hugely appreciated.

Sat 7th February

To be held at The Dorford Centre, Dorchester from 9.45am – 2pm
Please contact Jane Thrift to register for a place

Kate Evans, author of The Food Of love will be speaking



Training completed at Somerford Children’s Centre

Ellie, Karen, Brooke, Caroline and Katie all completed their training and will be peer supporting at Somerford, Ferndown, and Christchurch peer support groups. Sadly Paula was unable to complete at this time but hopefully will do so soon – as she is keen to restart a group in Verwood.

Upcoming Training

The next course is being held in Sturminster Newton starting on Friday 13th February – there was a lot of interest in the training and places filled very fast, unfortunately leaving some mums disappointed.

If you know of anyone who is interested in becoming a peer supporter please ask them to email me The next training will start in April in the Weymouth/ Dorchester area – venue and dates yet to be confirmed.  There are already quite a few names on the waiting list.

Why do we promote

Studies have shown that a baby who has skin contact with his or her mother following birth gains many advantages:-

  • The baby cries much less than a baby in a cot
  • The baby warms up more quickly and finds it easier to control his or her temperature in the early days, and wastes less of his or her precious stored calories trying to keep warm, and therefore gains weight better
  • The baby’s heartbeat, circulation and breathing rate are all calmed and improved by close contact with the mother’s skin and body rhythms – it has a powerful    de-stressing effect on the baby
  • The baby learns to recognise the smell of the mother’s skin, sweat, pheromones and milk
  • If the mother has chosen to breastfeed, skin to skin can be a valuable way to get this off to a great start
  • Cuddling your naked baby next to your skin should be a pleasurable experience for both you and your baby.  ‘Skin-to-skin’ is important at any time for all of the benefits mentioned above, it should not be restricted to just the first day or two after birth.  It can also help to go back to basics with lots of skin to skin if feeding has been difficult or stressful, and if the milk supply is a bit low.

It is also just as important for mixed feeding and formula feeding mums to do as much skin to skin as possible, to keep their babies close, calm and feeling loved and secure.  It is important to encourage mums who are offering formula for whatever reason, to try to ensure that they limit the number of people who feed the baby, so that the baby learns to create a close and loving relationship with just 1 or 2 adults and is not fed by lots people.

If you would like to add anything to RBM Dorset Groups' Newsletter please let me know: 

This could be photos of your Group, tips and things you have found helpful at your group or about your own Breastfeeding Experience.

Vasospasm and Raynaud’s Phenomenon

These conditions are due to a spasm of blood vessels preventing blood from getting to a particular area of the body, typically the end of an extremity, though not necessarily. They often occur in response to a drop in temperature. Raynaud’s phenomenon will occur in the fingers, for example, when someone goes outside from a warm house on a cool day. The fingers will turn white and the lack of blood getting to the tips of the fingers will cause pain. Raynaud’s phenomenon occurs more commonly in women than men, and can be often associated with “auto-immune” illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis.

Here, we will refer to both conditions as vasospasm. Vasospasm can also occur in nipples. In fact, it is much more common than generally believed. It can occur along with any cause of sore nipples, and is, in fact, probably a result of damage, but it may also, on occasion, occur without any other kind of nipple pain at all.

Typically, vasospasm occurs after the feeding is over, once the baby is already off the breast. Presumably, the outside air is cooler than the inside of the baby’s mouth. When the baby comes off the breast, the nipple is its usual colour, but soon, within minutes or even seconds, the nipple will start to turn white. This is likely also due to drying of the nipple. Mothers generally describe a burning pain when the nipple turns white. After turning white for a while, the nipple may actually turn back to its normal colour (as blood starts to flow back to the nipple), and the mother will notice a throbbing pain. The nipple may go back and forth between colours (and types of pain) for several minutes or even an hour or two. Sometimes, the mother does not even notice her nipple turning white and instead sees it change form pink to red to purple and back to pink again. That the nipple changes colour is not the concern; that the mother is in pain is a concern. Interestingly some mothers do not have pain with the vasospasm.

The treatment for vasospasm is to fix the original cause of the pain (poor latch, Candida). See the information sheets When Latching, Candida Protocol and Sore Nipples as well as the video clips. Almost always, as the nipple soreness from another cause is getting better, so will the pain from the vasospasm, but more slowly. Fixing the original cause of the pain (improving the latch, treating Candida etc) should be the focus of treatment. However, some mothers no longer have pain during the feeding, or never had it at all. Indeed, some start having vasospasm during the pregnancy. If the pain is mild, there may be no reason to treat, and reassurance is all that is necessary. However, it is worth treating when the pain is distressing to the mother, and especially if the pain during the feeding does not improve, as severe restriction of blood supply to the nipple may delay healing.

Please remember that blanching of the nipple can occur for positioning reasons and this should be ruled out as the primary cause of blanching and pain.  It is thought that up to 20% of the adult population worldwide can suffer from this condition (nhs choices website)

The excerpt above is taken from Dr Jack Newman's website BreastfeedingInc.Ca and refers to information sheets which can be accessed via that website

Why do we promote ‘baby led feeding’?

Babies tell us very clearly, sometimes even before they are awake, that they want to be fed, by displaying feeding cues.  These are;

  • Restlessness
  • Wriggling
  • Rooting towards his hand or anything near his mouth
  • Sucking motions
  • Squeaking and fussing
  • If these early cues are ignored, the baby begins to fuss slightly, eventually working up to full crying
  • Crying is the last sign of hunger
If you keep your baby near you at all times, you will soon learn to recognise the early cues and will become the expert on your baby’s needs.

If you try to space out or schedule the feeds or are sleeping apart from your baby, you will miss out on the early cues and this can lead to difficulties.

Babies do find waiting for food and drink very distressing.  There is no need to make them wait until they cry.  No one else in the family has to cry for food!  Most adults ‘demand feed’ so why make a baby wait?

A newborn left to cry for even a few minutes can become very disorganised and find it difficult to latch on and suckle correctly.

As a result he may not take as much as he needs.  He is unsettled and the breast is not drained properly.  This could lead to decreased milk production over a time.

Fact - breastfed babies cannot be overfed!! Babies and mums breastfeed for food, comfort, closeness, relaxation and to reinforce bonds – it is never inappropriate to offer the breast.

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