Positioning and Latch while Breastfeeding
After 38 weeks, 3 days i saw my baby in real life. Her twinkling eyes, tiny lips. I was filled with over overwhelming gratitude. Once the nurse handed her to me i knew i love her forever.
We are discussing today about Positioning and Latch while Breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is a learned process none of us born knowing how to do it. My lactation consult actually helped me a lot to explain the proper Positioning and latch while breastfeeding.
Getting Started Positioning and Latch while Breastfeeding
Almost every mother on the first instance has some or the other question, anxiety on how to breastfeed their babies and what is the correct position and is the baby latching properly. My lactation consultant was a wonderful lady who encouraged me and explained that it is absolutely normal to have such questions. She asked me to sit in a comfortable posture, securely and gently holding the baby. She briefed me about the different positions and latching techniques which is explained below.
Bringing your Baby to Breast: Positioning and Latch
New Babies have a stepping crawling reflex that can help them seek out of breast. You will have to give your baby multiple chances to self-attach in the first few days. Keep your baby on chest skin to skin. New born babies need about 10-12 feeds in a day when they are using self-attached way to latch.
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Cross Cradle or Crossover Hold Breastfeeding:
Use a breastfeeding pillow for Support. The best one are listed here. Hold the baby in front of you, place one hand on the base of the baby’s neck and support her body with the same arm. Baby should be held tummy to tummy. With your free hand you must hold your breast in U shape.Give your baby chance to self-attach, if not tickle baby’s lips with your nipples until they open their mouth and latch on.
Football/Clutch hold Breastfeeding:
Mothers shoulder and back should be relaxed. Use breastfeeding pillow to give support while feeding. The baby is held next to you from one side with your hand on the base of the neck and baby’s legs towards your back. This position is great for mothers who just had a C section. Baby is tuck under the same arm as the breast that is being fed to the baby. Baby’s head is supported by mothers thumb and forefinger. Latch your baby repeating the same steps as in cross cradle or crossover hold.
Cradle/Madonna Hold Breastfeeding:
Baby is rested on your forearm, not in the crook of your arm, bring your forearm closer to put the baby to breast. Tuck the baby’s lower arm under his/her body. Use a U hold to hold the breast. Make sure your fingers are not touching your areola so that they do not get into the way when baby try to latch on. Latch your baby repeating the same steps as in cross cradle or crossover hold.
Side Lying Breastfeeding:
This is the easiest way. You are lying on one side the baby is in front of you on his/her side, the arm that is higher is the one that helps bring the baby to breast. Use Breastfeeding pillow. Latch your baby repeating the same steps as in cross cradle or crossover hold, football/clutch hold, Cradle/Madonna hold
How to get good Latch/ Tips for good Latch
- Loosen your baby’s blanket so that she can move her arms. Breastfeeding will work better for both mother and baby if baby’s arms are free to move and touch your breast.
- Be patient and wait until baby open his/her mouth very wide.
- Move her to your breasts, don’t move your breast to her. Her chin should reach your breast first.
- The nose and chin should be close to the breast but not pushed into the breast. More of the top of the areola (pigmented skin surrounding a nipple) will be showing and less of the bottom.
- Your baby’s lips should make a seal around the breast and her mouth will look a little bit like a fish with lips rolled outwards and visible. You can help adjust her lips by pulling gently on the skin by her nose and chin in order to help the lips make a seal.
What can i do to overcome challenges during breastfeeding?
It is important to have confidence in your body’s ability to breastfeed. If you are having pain or any other problems while breastfeeding, contact your lactation consultant.