Breastfeeding may be challenging! Since nursing is natural, many women believe it would be easy. Mama and baby should know how to do it.
Learning to breastfeed is difficult for many women, though. Luckily, it becomes much easier—and becomes what many mothers consider the “lazy” approach to feeding their infant (Bottles? Pumping? Who needs that, right?).
How do you make it easy? Start with expert support and breastfeeding education. Here are the ideal breastfeeding positions to get you and your baby out on the right foot—for a long and healthy nursing relationship.
How To Get Your Baby To Latch
The latch is the most crucial part of breastfeeding. This is essential for the baby’s milk extraction and the mother’s comfort. Here are various techniques to get baby latched on:
- Bring baby (head and body) near enough to access the nipple with your breast in one hand and back supported in the other.
- Your nipple may expand their mouth by tickling their top lip.
- Bring baby to nipple (not the other way around). The baby’s chin should initially contact the breast and latch onto more tissue beneath the nipple than above.
- Baby’s lips should cover your areola.
- Pillow your infant to avoid hunching.
- Clear baby’s nose.
How To Know Your Baby Is Latched
How to tell whether your baby is correctly latched to your breast:
- Baby’s “fish lips” protrude.
- Baby’s chin touches your breast.
- Nursing moves your baby’s ears.
- Latched deep, your baby has at least one inch of your breast in their mouth.
- Pulling your baby’s bottom lip reveals their tongue.
- They’re gulping.
- No clicking sound.
No discomfort and good milk removal indicate a firmly latched infant.
3 Tips To Help Your Baby Latch
You may assist your baby’s latch by choosing a nursing position. You must also support your breast when breastfeeding. To help an infant latch, there are three major techniques to support the breast. Help your infant latch with these positions:
- U hold: Cup your breast with your hand on your ribcage below your breast, thumb on the outside and fingers on the inside. The breast will be in the U-shaped space of your hand.
- C hold: Wrap your hand over the side of your breast, thumb on top, and fingers together beneath. C-shaped fingers and thumb. Keep your fingers and thumb away from the nipple so the baby may latch onto breast tissue.
- Exaggerated C hold, or flipple: For babies who are having trouble latching or getting a deep enough latch, place your hand in the C-hold position, then push your thumb down into your breast tissue and pull it up so that your nipple points upward (basically pushing/pulling the skin upward to create a “perkier” breast). When latching an infant, place their lips on the bottom of the breast and roll the nipple into their mouth. Your infant latches better.
Note: Regularly needing specific grips may signal a nursing problem like a lip or tongue tie, so visit a lactation consultant or pediatric dentist (some ENTs treat lip and tongue ties, so ask your physician for a referral).
How Do I Know If My Baby Is Removing Milk Efficiently?
- Baby is growing properly.
- Baby wets 5–6 disposable or 6–8 cloth diapers every day. You can hear your baby swallowing.
- Baby feeds every 2–3 hours throughout the day and 2–4 hours at night.
- Baby is awake, active, and healthy. (A baby who naps instead of eating should be seen by a doctor.)
The 6 Best Breastfeeding Positions
Moms should attempt these positions. Each baby and mom has an optimal position. Find your ideal nursing position with these.
1. Laid-Back Breastfeeding
Mom and baby naturally assume this posture after delivery. Mom is relaxing, and the baby is skin-to-skin on her chest, searching for the nipple. Gravity and the mom’s curves secure the baby. The laid-back posture, termed biological nurturing, helps the infant discover the nipple and feed on his own.
How To Biologically Breastfeed
Relax on pillows. (Rather than laying flat on your back, recline in a comfortable, supported posture.) Many moms choose a tank top or button-down shirt for skin-to-skin contact. Place your infant tummy down on your stomach. Help or let your kid locate the