Feeding your baby is more than just a matter of nutrition, it’s also about nurturing and comfort. Using feeding time to make eye contact and hold your baby are great ways to increase that bonding time. It’s also a great time to talk to your little one.
Breastfeeding provides you and your baby with many health benefits. It also costs less money than other feeding methods in addition to the health benefits.
You can choose any position you wish to nurse in, whether that be a seated or laying down position. It should be one that gives you the best feeding position for your baby and their needs. This may vary with the baby’s age, your comfort level and even the time of day. Many people use the cradle hold, with mom seated upright, holding the baby like a cradle. This allows you to hold the baby with one hand and use the other to support or move your breast
Supporting the Baby While Nursing
Mom and baby doing side-lying breastfeeding
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No matter what position you decide on, get some support! A nursing pillow or using couch or bed pillows to help you hold baby up will save strain on your neck and back. Ask for help from others if you’re just learning.
You can purchase fancy pillows to do the same job, but most moms find that anything that lifts their arms, saves on the strain. This makes the pillows made for nursing a luxury for most mothers.
If you’re breastfeeding twins, a specifically designed pillow may be a great option
Baby Placement at the Breast
Mom breastfeeding in cradle hold
A good latch is one of the most important parts of breastfeeding comfortably. This directly goes back to a good position of the baby. Your baby should be belly to belly with you and chin to breast. If the baby is twisted or has their head turned it can make it not only more difficult for them to get milk, but it can make your nipples sore.
Older babies are more likely to move around while nursing. This does not seem to cause most mothers any pain. But don’t let your newborn learn the sloppy habits of nursing older babies, they simply can’t get away with the same types of positions as nursing acrobats do at later stages.
When baby needs a break, it’s time to change sides or is finished, simply slip a finger in the corner of their mouth to gently break the suction. If you don’t do this you will cause yourself a lot of pain. You can then offer the other side following the same steps.