The feeling of growing a new life can be thrilling and awe-inspiring. But now that you’ve given birth, you may find that your days are polar opposites to when you were pregnant. There is nothing that can prepare you for life as a new mom. The first few weeks may be overwhelming and you may find yourself consumed in the endless shopping lists, midnight shrilling cries, and the panicked 3:00 AM Google searches.
Amidst the mayhem, nursing may be one of the many stressful jobs as a new mother. While making milk comes naturally, breastfeeding does not. Here we delve deep into the most efficient ways to breastfeed your baby.
IS THERE A RIGHT POSITION TO BREASTFEED YOUR BABY?
It is good to note that, despite there not being one right way to hold or feed your baby, proper positioning is essential while breastfeeding. With the right breastfeeding positions, you can help your newborn latch on the right way and prevent nipple soreness and other breastfeeding problems.
4 BEST BREASTFEEDING POSITIONS
The way a mother holds her baby determines how easy it is for her baby to feed. Here is a guide to the four best breastfeeding positions to nurse your newborn.
- \1. Laid-back position
Also known as biological nursing, this natural position is often the first instinctive stance used by new mothers for breastfeeding. It is a good choice for anyone, but maybe especially helpful if you’re nursing a preemie, twins, a baby that has difficulty latching on, or a baby with super-sensitive tummies or excess gas.
To breastfeed your baby in a laid-back position:
- Lean back on your bed frame or couch, propped up by pillows in a semi-reclining position.
- Rest your baby on your chest or tummy, in any desired direction, as long as the whole front of the body is against yours
- Your infant will naturally work his way towards one of your breasts and attempt to latch on (known as breast crawl)
- Now lie back and relax as your baby feeds
2. Cradle hold position
The cradle hold is the classic position most of us picture when we think of breastfeeding. It may be difficult to breastfeed your baby in this position right from the get-go, but once your baby learns to latch on, this is a comfortable way to breastfeed.
To breastfeed your baby in a cradle hold position:
- Position your baby such that the head rests in the notch of your elbow of the arm on the side you’ll be breastfeeding. The body should be positioned against your tummy.
- Cup your breast with the other hand and lightly compress so that the nipple points slightly toward your baby’s nose. The baby is now ready to latch.
3. Cross-cradle hold
The cross-cradle hold looks very similar to the cradle hold but your arms are switched so your baby’s body lies along your opposite forearm. This position makes it easier for your baby to access your nipple and may work well for nursing preemies, newborns, and babies that have trouble getting latched on.
To breastfeed your baby in a cross-cradle hold position:
- Hold your baby’s head with the hand opposite to the breast you’ll be nursing from
- Rest your wrist between your baby’s shoulder blades, your thumb behind one ear, your other fingers behind the other ear.
- Using your free hand, cup your breasts as you would for the cradle hold.
4. Football hold/Side Hold
Also known as the clutch hold, this position is perfect for nursing twins. You may also benefit from this nursing position if you’re rehearsing breastfeeding after a cesarean section where the baby does not lay across your abdomen. Mothers with large breasts and those with flat or inverted nipples may prefer this position.
To breastfeed your baby in a football hold position:
- Position your baby at your side, facing you and his or her legs tucked under your arms on the same side as the breast you’re nursing from.
- Support your baby’s head with the same hand and use the other hand to cup your breast and guide it to your baby’s mouth for latching
Through many trial-and-errors, you’ll be able to find the best position that works for you.
- Raising children, “Breastfeeding positions” -
- Verywellfamily, “5 Common Breastfeeding Positions To Try” -