How To Breastfeed

If  breastfeeding feels a bit awkward at first, don’t worry. Breastfeeding is a skill that you and your baby learn together, and it can take time to get used to.

There are lots of different positions you can use to breastfeed. You just need to check the following points:

  • Are you comfortable? It’s worth getting comfortable before a feed. Use pillows or cushions if necessary. Your shoulders and arms should be relaxed.


  • Are your baby’s head and body in a straight line? (It’s hard for your baby to swallow if their head and neck are twisted.) 


  • Are you holding your baby close to you, facing your breast? Supporting their neck, shoulders and back should allow them to tilt their head back and swallow easily.


  • Always bring your baby to the breast rather than leaning forward to ‘post’ your breast into your baby’s mouth, as this can lead to poor attachment.


  • Your baby needs to get a big mouthful of breast. Placing your baby with their nose level with your nipple will encourage them to open their mouth wide and attach to the breast well.


  • Avoid holding the back of your baby’s head, so that they can tip their head back. This way your nipple goes past the hard roof of their mouth and ends up at the back of their mouth against the soft palate.


And here is how to latch your baby on to your breast

  • Hold your baby close to you with their nose level with the nipple.


  • Wait until your baby opens their mouth really wide with their tongue down. You can encourage them to do this by gently stroking their top lip.


  • Bring your baby on to your breast.


  • Your baby will tilt their head back and come to your breast chin first. Remember to support your baby’s neck but not hold the back of their head. They should then be able to take a large mouthful of breast. Your nipple should go towards the roof of their mouth.


  • Know the signs of a good latch. Your baby is latching well if you feel a pulling or tugging sensation on your breast and he is getting milk. How to tell if your baby is swallowing? His temple and lower jaw move rhythmically and you hear a breathy aah occasionally, which is your baby exhaling after he swallows. (Keep in mind that before your milk comes in, your baby won’t be swallowing all that often because the volume of colostrum isn’t high.) Ideally, your baby’s lips will be flanged out — like a fish or an open flower — around your nipple and areola, not tucked under, which may make your nipples sore.


  • Be on the lookout for signs of trouble. It’s common for new moms to feel a little soreness or tenderness with breastfeeding, especially in the very beginning. But you shouldn’t feel pinching or biting, and any soreness shouldn’t last the entire feeding. If it does, it means there’s something going on that you  need to correct. Pay attention to how your nipple looks when your baby detaches. If it’s compressed, cracked, or bleeding, that’s not normal.If you notice any of these things or feel a lot of pain, or if something seems off for your baby, reach out to a lactation consultant, talk to your doctor or pediatrician, or find a support group. Some issues can interfere with your baby’s nursing abilities, and an expert can help. Maybe your baby is biting or has a tight jaw, or perhaps you have flat or inverted nipples, See how you can get help. All in all successful breastfeeding starts with figuring out a proper latch.
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