By: Robin OBrien
For successful breastfeeding you should buy the best nursing for you. Breastfeeding a baby – especially outside of the home – can be difficult at the best of times, so it’s worth spending a little time and thought before you buy the nursing bra that is right for you.
Nursing bras are not the same as normal bras. When breastfeeding, the shape and size of the breast changes throughout the day and a good nursing bra can be easily adjusted to provide the support you need. Nursing bras also allow for the discrete insertion of breast pads, the cup linings are designed to avoid irritating already sore nipples and they allow for the flow of milk – blocked ducts can lead to mastitis. There’s no doubt that a correctly fitted, good quality nursing bra can make breastfeeding a whole lot easier. Here are some tips on choosing the best nursing bra for you.
The best time to buy a nursing bra is during mid to late pregnancy. By all means continue to wear pre-pregnancy bras until they are no longer comfortable, then go out and buy.
Make sure the nursing bra you choose fits properly. This seems like obvious advice but most women don’t buy conventional bras that fit them correctly! Also, the nursing bra should allow for the insertion of breast pads. The nursing bra should be made of a stretchy material so that it moves with you. Finally, all good brands of nursing bras are very adjustable at both the strap and cup.
The nursing bra you buy should be easy to use. A good nursing bra will allow easy opening using just one hand – make sure you can close it one-handed. Most good quality maternity bras come with plastic clips or hooks and eyes – both are easy to open with one hand, though hook and eye can be trickier than plastic clips to redo.
The nursing bra should give you good support, especially if you need a plus size nursing bra. You can avoid back strain by getting a bra with good support.
Try to buy a nursing bra where the cup is lined with cotton – although many synthetic materials nowadays do let your skin breath. The material of the cup should let your skin breathe as sweat combined with breast milk can cause rashes and mastitis.
Many large-breasted women use under-wire bras as they like the support such bras provide. When breastfeeding it’s best to avoid under-wire nursing bras especially in the early postpartum weeks. Under-wire maternity bras can put pressure on milk glands and may lead to less milk production or blocked glands. Many modern nursing bras give ample support without using under-wiring. If you do want to buy an under-wire nursing bra, then it’s vital that it fits perfectly.
If you’re planning on pumping often, you should consider buying a nursing bra that will work well with a hands free pumping system.
At nighttime you can wear a light nursing bra that that is made of stretchy material. These bras simply open by stretching and lifting the cup over your breast. Nighttime nursing bras are much more comfortable than day wear nursing bras.
Take care of your nursing bra. Following the manufacturer’s instructions on how to wash and dry it.
Buy as many nursing bras as you can afford; you need to change your nursing bra every day.
Nursing bras can be sexy. There are now many pretty, stylish and sexy nursing bras on the market. Investing in one of these can be a real ‘pick-me-up’ especially on special occasions.
Buying the best nursing bra for you is not about buying an expensive or brand-name nursing bra: it’s about buying a nursing bra that fits you perfectly, gives you the support you need, functions well and is pleasing to wear.
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About the Author
Robin O’Brien is founder of breastfeeding information. It promotes the benefits of breastfeeding. You can find out more about choosing the best nursing bra for you.