Breastfeeding Support

Breastfeeding Support at Montefiore Einstein

We encourage you to breastfeed your baby — and will support you every step of the way! Breast milk provides the ideal nutrition for your baby’s growing body and brain. Breastfeeding can improve your health as well, reducing your risk of diabetes, heart disease, breast cancer and ovarian cancer.

Although breastfeeding is natural, it may take a little time and patience to get the hang of it. Educating yourself before your baby arrives will help you understand how to latch your baby an/d establish a good milk supply. Nursing your baby early and often, and only supplementing with formula when medically needed, is the best way to make sure your baby gets enough milk at the breast.

How to get help with breastfeeding now
How to Prepare for Your Breastfeeding Journey

The best place to start is read our Breastfeeding Basics guide. It will help you learn how to get breastfeeding off to a good start and ensure a good milk supply.

Attend a prenatal breastfeeding class. You will want to do this by the middle of your third trimester (around 30 weeks). Check our breastfeeding class schedule to find the best date and time that works for you.

Read or watch resources online to learn more. Two good places to start are the Droplet website for information about breastfeeding in the first five days and Ready, Set, Baby teaches the basics of breastfeeding.

Free Apps

There are also free apps you can use to learn how to latch baby and address common concerns, including:

Breast Beginnings (education and support)
Birth and Beyond (education)

Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative

Montefiore Einstein is proud to be accredited by the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI). Once your baby is born, our lactation specialists and nurses will provide in-hospital support to help breastfeeding get off to a good start.

Common Questions

Here are some of the most common breastfeeding concerns, and answers or links for more information.

Latching baby

There are several techniques that can help you achieve a more comfortable and effective latch. Here are two videos that can teach you these techniques:

Attaching Your Baby at the Breast
by Global Health Media Project

Sandwich Hold/Asymmetric Latch
by the Institute for the Advancement of Breastfeeding and Lactation Education (IABLE)

Breast engorgement

In the first few days, it is not unusual for breasts to become engorged: painfully overfull of milk. You can help relieve this through frequent nursing, applying a cold compress after nursing and taking an anti-inflammatory medication like ibuprofen. Gentle breast massage can be helpful (we do not recommend massaging the breasts too deeply). To learn about breast massage, watch the video: The Basics of Breast Massage and Hand Expression.

Hand expression

If your baby doesn’t latch to the breast or needs to be supplemented, hand expression can be helpful. Hand expressing before nursing can make it easier for your baby to latch to the breast. Frequent hand expression can also increase your milk supply. This video from Stanford Medicine teaches how to hand express milk.

Milk volume

It is normal and expected for your milk volume to start small after delivery and increase over the first few days. The small amount of thick yellow milk you produce in your baby’s first few days is called colostrum. It contains sugar to feed your baby’s brain and antibodies to protect them from disease. Colostrum is all your baby needs for the first few days after birth.

It is also normal for babies to lose some weight in the first few days— they are born with extra fat to give them energy while they are learning to breastfeed and while your milk is “coming in”.

Our Breastfeeding Basics guide has details on how your baby can let you know it is getting enough milk at the breast by:

  • Weight gain
  • Number of wet and soiled diapers
  • Your baby’s own cues for hunger and fullness.

When breastfeeding, we recommend not giving your baby formula unless indicated by a medical provider or lactation specialist. When your baby latches to the breast, your body produces exactly the amount of milk your baby needs to grow. When your baby receives a bottle of formula, your body doesn’t receive the message to make milk, and your supply could decrease.

Nursing in the first hour

Nursing in the first hour after birth and when your baby shows feeding cues will help ensure a good milk supply. If your baby is unable to latch at the breast or is premature, you will need to remove milk 8 times a day with a pump until your baby is ready to breastfeed. If you are concerned that you are not producing enough milk, ask to speak with a lactation specialist or your medical provider.

Breast compressions can also help increase milk flow to a sleepy or premature nursing baby.

How to supplement, if needed

If your baby needs to be supplemented with expressed breast milk, donor milk or formula, it is best to spoon-feed, cup-feed or give a bottle slowly.

Hands on pumping” will increase the amount of milk you pump and help to increase your milk supply.

Medication safety

Most medications are safe to take while breastfeeding. To be sure, you can talk to your healthcare provider, call the Infant Risk Hotline at 806-352-2519 or consult the LactMed database.

Planning your return to work/school

New York State WIC has developed a Making it Work Toolkit that contains a wealth of information to help breastfeeding mothers return to work.

Learn about the Proper Storage and Preparation of Breastmilk from the CDC.

Ask your provider for a breast pump prescription. Here are just a few locations that supply breast pumps.

A-Med Supplies
Phone: 845-783-6678
Fax: 888-877-7765
Breast Pump Prescription Form

Benjamin Pharmacy
Phone: 718-405-9111
Fax: 718-405-9112

Phone: 800-631-3031

Hospital Grade Pumps

Worldwide Surgical

Questions about COVID-19

If you have questions about breastfeeding and COVID-19, visit the CDC website for the most up-to-date information.

If you have questions about breastfeeding and the COVID-19 vaccine, has detailed information on COVID-19 Vaccine & Breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding in the NICU

Breast milk is especially important for infants who are born prematurely or who are admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit for medical issues. Breastfeeding or pumping milk for your baby helps protect them from serious infections and other medical complications.

Caring for a premature or ill baby is stressful. Holding your baby skin to skin and expressing milk for your baby are ways that you can help keep them safe and healthy. It may take some time for your milk production to increase if you have given birth prematurely. Our NICU nurses and lactation specialists will help you get milk production off to a good start.

Helpful Resources


Other health organizations and educators offer excellent information on breastfeeding — we’ve referenced many above. Here are sites, apps and videos that can help you learn more.


CDC - Breastfeeding
Information for families and healthcare providers, including details on how to handle and store milk, medication safety and more.

Videos and information to help you learn about breastfeeding in the first five days after birth.

Global Health Media Project
Easy-to-understand videos to help mothers see and learn about breastfeeding.

Instructional videos from the Institute for the Advancement of Breastfeeding and Lactation Education, including latching, cup-feeding and paced bottle feeding.

A database with information on drugs and other chemicals which may have possible adverse effects in nursing infants.

New York Milk Bank
Providing infants with safely pasteurized donor human milk when their mothers’ own milk is unavailable or insufficient.

Ready, Set, Baby A guide on the basics of breastfeeding from the first hours to heading home and going back to work.


Breast Beginnings (education and support)

Birth and Beyond (education)

Online Breastfeeding Classes and Groups

Stanford Breast Feeding Class (Pre-recorded video, watch anytime)

Just Birth Space: Infant Feeding Class
Every Tuesday 7pm

Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute Breastfeeding Classes
Every Monday 1pm–2:30pm AND 3pm-4:30pm
On the date and time, click here to begin video session

Montefiore: Breastfeeding Class
First Thursday of the month, 11:45am-1pm
Please call 646-494-8397 to register

Baby Academy: Breastfeeding Class
Many dates and times!

Wakefield Breastfeeding Class
Fourth Wednesday of the Month, 6pm-8 pm
On the day and time, click to begin video session

March Healthy Start Breastfeeding Classes

Postpartum Breastfeeding Groups

Just Birth Space: AFTER BIRTH Support Group
Every Wednesday 7pm-9pm

Bronx Baby Café Breastfeeding Support Group
Every Thursday 11am-12 pm and in Spanish at 1pm-2pm
Click this link to start:

Other Prenatal Classes and Groups

Montefiore: Birth Class
First Tuesday of the month, 11:45am-1pm
Please call 646-494-8397 to register

Just Birth Space: Caring for Newborn
Third Saturday of the Month, 11am-1 pm

Just Birth Space: Vaginal Birth After C-section (VBAC)
Fourth Saturday of the Month, 12pm-1:30pm

Just Birth Space: Understanding Induction of Labor
Second Saturday of the Month, 11:00am-12:30pm

Just Birth Space: Pregnancy Support Group
EVERY Tuesday 5:00pm-6:30pm

Just Birth Space: AFTER BIRTH Support Group
Every Thursday 5:00pm-7pm

For a variety of Prenatal Video Classes
Please note: some classes here require you to live in the borough where the class is located . Please read the details