Breastfeeding Positions for the Mom and the Baby

Breastfeeding a baby is a moment every mother wants to live. Finally after months of bearing the child in the womb, the one moment the mother waits for is breastfeeding their child and making a bond.

It is a special moment for both of them and creates an everlasting bond between the both. As much essential it is to feed the baby for the first and quite some time with the mother’s milk, it is equally important for the mother to feed their baby.

A new mother may get confused on the ways she can get comfortable with it and know the techniques she can used to enjoy this process to the best.

And so here is a small guidance to teach you the breastfeeding positions and basic facts about it.

What are the Basic Steps for Optimal Positioning?

It can get quite confusing and a few moves to get right with the sitting position on how to breast feed your baby. You and the baby must be comfortable in the position as you both have to sit like that for a while and you don’t want to end up hurting your body or raising a pain. It is good to know how to go about different positions of breastfeeding and land up comfortably in a position. Just follow the steps -

  • Position comfortably: You do need a back support or arm rests or even foot rests to give yourself a comfort while feeding your baby and make sure you correctly place your cushions and rests to give you that comfort.
  • Position the baby: After you are done sitting comfortable take the baby in your hands and make the baby rest on you comfortably too. The baby’s nose and mouth should be positioned at your nipple and he should not in any way feel stress to reach your breasts.
  • Support your breasts: Your breasts should not be pressing on your baby’s mouth, so make sure you hold your breasts comfortable apart from the face.
  • Latch the baby: Encouraging the baby to open his mouth and making him reach your nipples comfortably is needed to be done comfortably. Raise the baby’s head and support his back to make him reach your nipples comfortably.

How to Latch Baby for Breast Feeding?

When latching your baby use your nipple to tickle on the baby’s tongue or on his centre of lip if his mouth is closed. When he opens his mouth aim for the roof inside his mouth bringing his chin closer!

The Right Latching is When:

  • The baby’s lips are flanged.
  • Half inch of the breast area around nipples is inside the baby’s mouth.
  • There is just a slight touchy difference between the baby’s nose and your breast.

If you feel uncomfortable with the latch, you can put a finger into the baby’s mouth and take out the nipples and try doing it again.

When the baby is offered to suck breasts, he does it without swallowing and you will find crease on his temples and his jaws moving very fast.

When he begins receiving milk his jaw will work hard and suck faster and then slowly because the stomach starts to fill in.

What are the Basic Breastfeeding Positions to Hold Your Baby?

Breastfeeding your baby is the most incredible and incomparable experience a mother has. It is a moment that is enjoyed by both the child and the mother and should never be uncomfortable for any one of you.

And so there are a lot of comforting positions that make sure that you feed your baby just right and enjoy it too.

They make your task easy and give you movements so that you don’t up getting bored with one position.

The Positions are:

1. The Cradle hold:

The classic breastfeeding position is when you support the baby’s head with the crook of your arm.

Sit comfortable on your bed or on chair that supports your arm, line up cushions below your arm and rest your legs in a position so that your body is not tilted downwards.

Hold the baby with the baby’s head on the crook of your arm, so that the baby’s body is directly facing towards you.

If you are feeding through your right breast, keep the baby’s head on your right forearm. Keep that baby’s left hand under your hand and latch.

Note: It gets a little hard to hold the baby’s head while nursing in this position. Women who have gone through a C-section for their child find it difficult to feed through this position.

2. The Cross Cradle Hold:

This position pretty much is like the cradle-hold position with an exception that you don’t support the baby’s head with the forearm and uses the other hand to cross over the hands and hold the baby’s neck and head.

If you are nursing from your right breast, your left hand comes to support the baby’s neck and hand.

Note: It works best for infants who are difficult to latch.

3. The Football Hold:

Like the name suggests, you clutch or hold your baby under your arm like a football.

The baby must be facing towards you while his legs shall be towards your back. Rest your arm in your lap or on a set of cushions and support your baby’s shoulders with your hand.

Your palm must be placed around the baby’s head.

Note: Perfect for mother of twins as this way you need only one hand for a baby and you can feed both the babies together. Comfortable for women who have had a cesarean child!

4. Reclining Position:

Lie down on your bed tilting on one side with cushions supporting your back, knees and shoulders.

The goal is to keep your body in a straight line. Now bring your baby closer and bringing his head near your breast.

This may require a cushion to be tucked under his head, or his head resting on your forearm.

Note: This position may be helpful if you are tired sitting and feeding or have a cesarean child and don’t want to put pressure on your abdominal area.

5. Side Lying Cradle:

The side lying cradle is best for women who have had a cesarean baby because the pressure does not come to the abdomen.

You just need to lie down and put the baby on the resting position and turn towards the baby with the nipple in baby’s mouth.

It is as good as lying and relaxing while feeding the baby. Use your arms to give comfort to the baby’s head and make sure that the baby is turned comfortably towards you.

You can support your breasts from one hand and support the baby from another.

6. Inverted Side Lying:

Making this work can be tricky and also interesting. You just have to lie down in a side lying position and lay your baby lay side-wise too but this time the baby’s legs should be opposite your legs.

The baby should be lying upside down to how you are lying although both of you can see each other.

The baby is free from your hand support and can rest freely and comfortably while being fed.

This even gives the baby an inverted picture of the scene he sees every day and makes him calculate and work on capturing different angles of same scenes.

Twin Breastfeeding Positions:

Feeding twin babies can be a very strenuous, tiring and brainstorming session. While a new mother is still struggling to learn the art of breastfeeding the burden of feeding two babies can be very difficult at times.

Given that you may have been feeding the babies turn by turn, it is a much simpler and time saving way to just feed both the babies together and spend a good time with them both together and get done with the breastfeeding in half the time you usually do.

The Twin Breastfeeding Positions are:

1. Front Cross:

This is a simple and easy position to comfortably lay on a sit and rest your back while feeding both the babies.

Just hold both the babies and hold them diagonally across your body with their face facing each of your breasts and body extending through below your arms and to their legs almost ending near your waist or hip.

This way both the babies have your body support, while your wrap your arms around the babies and breastfeeding both of them at a go.

2. Double Football:

In this position you sit on a bed comfortably and have a back rest while feeding your babies at ease.

The babies are made to lie in your arms with both of them having their face on towards your breasts and body extending to the outer side of the body.

This way you are able to support their heads a little better. You hold the baby like you hold a football and just comfortably breastfeed them.

3. Football and Cradle Hold:

This is a combination position where you hold one baby in a football hold position and one baby in a cradle hold position.

This way you have ease of changing the baby position after a while and it is also feasible with babies when they start showing growth signs and need extra support for their body.

4. Upright Latch:

This is a mother’s favorite position as the mother enjoys laying back and making the baby feed. With twins the process can become a little problematic as upright latching is not quite easy for twin babies.

Lying on the bed and making the babies lie on you and then making the baby latch on the nipple is easy but holding them in a right position throughout the process can become troublesome.

What is Laid-Back Breastfeeding or Biological Nurturing?

Laid back breastfeeding has a lot to do with getting comfortable with your child and feeding him while enjoying the process. The bond that a mother and child shares gets a major boost with laid back breastfeeding.

The Process is:

  • Lay back on your bed in a comforting position with your baby on your chest.
  • Make sure your arms and back are comfortable.
  • Make the baby lie on you with his whole front against yours.
  • Let the baby’s cheek rest somewhere on your bare breast and make him reach out for your nipples.
  • Help the baby take the nipples in mouth and hold on to your breast.
  • Keep looking at each other and enjoy what the baby wants to do.

How do You Know When to Stop?

You will know when to stop by the signs your baby gives you. His jaw movements will be very slow and he will have withdrawal symptoms. Generally the babies sleep off while getting fed. Other times they are really low on moving their jaw and once you put your finger in their mouth they pop out.

Quick Nursing Tips:

Although the positions would have given a good guidance on how to feed your baby, there are several things to keep in mind while breastfeeding your baby. They are:

  • Make yourself comfortable: Choose comfortable chairs with arm rests and a lot of pillows and cushions to support your arms and back.
  • Support your breasts: Give a V-hold support to your breasts every time you feed your baby to make him comfortable. As your breast turns to get bigger on lactation, it’s safe to hold them properly while breastfeeding.
  • Support the baby: It is imperative to hold the baby in the correct and comfortable position to feed the baby right. The baby should not strain himself to reach the breasts.
  • Change routine: To avoid swelling and sore nipples, keep changing the time and position of feeding your child often.
  • Stay hydrated & calm: drink lots of water and milk as when you are properly hydrated you produce milk. Calming down your senses helps you relax.

With all of the guidance we are sure that you are now capable to hold the baby just right, with care and love to make your breastfeeding experience a memorable one!

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