Feeding immediately after birth means that your baby will get your colostrum.
Colostrum - your nutrient rich 'first' milk
Colostrum is concentrated milk, designed to meet all your baby's needs for the first few days after birth. It's rich in protective antibodies and sometimes yellow in colour. You should breastfeed or express your milk right away to get the maximum benefit from this early milk. Breastfeeding or expressing in the first hours and days also helps establish a good milk supply if you want to keep going with breastfeeding or expressing your breast milk.
When you start breastfeeding, you may feel quite overwhelmed. Don't worry, learning something new is always a challenge and breastfeeding is no different. Get help from your midwife or health visitor to make sure you get off to a good start. There are a number of practical FeedGood 'How to guides' on this site that can help too.
The first day
After birth many babies are quite sleepy. They typically feed during the first skin-to-skin contact, but may then feed infrequently. However, all babies are different - the first day could see your baby not feeding at all or seeming to feed constantly in short spurts - known as 'cluster feeding'. Both are usual for newborns.