There are no correct positions for breastfeeding, or positions that can be considered better than the others. Every mother and every child will be able together to find the perfect position for them, a position that could instead be completely ineffective for other mothers and children. The important thing is that both the mother and the baby are comfortable and that they do not get too tired in maintaining that position throughout the feeding.
However, we would like to describe some breastfeeding positions and techniques , useful information to start trying to breastfeed your baby. Try them all and you will surely find the best one for you!
The reclined position and the cradle position
The reclining position , also known as biological nurturing , is usually the first position that mothers try. In practice, the mother is semi lying on the bed or on the sofa , with the baby resting on her chest, slightly moved to her side. This is certainly a favorable position for breastfeeding as the force of gravity helps the milk descend and allows the baby to latch onto the breast correctly. This position is also suitable for women who have particularly plump and voluminous breasts. It is also a position that offers the baby the possibility of being in direct contact with the mother’s skin, which reassures him, which makes him feel protected, which allows him to feel all the love that his mother feels towards him.
The cradle position is usually the second position that mothers try, as soon as they leave the hospital and have the opportunity to breastfeed their baby inside their home environment, perhaps sitting comfortably on the sofa or in their favorite chair. It is not very different from the reclined position, only that in this case the mother is sitting with her back very straight . The baby’s head and neck are resting on the mother’s forearm and his body is pressed against the mother’s belly. Also in this case it is a position that guarantees excellent contact between mother and baby and which also offers the mother the opportunity to look her baby straight in the eye while breastfeeding him.
In order to maintain these two positions, however, it is of fundamental importance to use a pillow. Of course you can use a regular bed or sofa cushion, but to get the right support it would be preferable to buy a nursing pillow . If you have purchased a pregnancy pillow during the nine months of waiting, you can also use that same pillow now, which is also ideal for breastfeeding. Otherwise, buy a pillow specially designed to support children that are breastfed, available in many different versions depending on your specific needs. There are also very small versions available, ideal to carry with you in your bag, so that it becomes very simple and comfortable to breastfeed your baby even outside the home! Thanks to the use of the breastfeeding pillow, not only will you be able to feel comfortable while breastfeeding your baby and you will also guarantee him the maximum possible comfort, but you will also eliminate at the root the risk of being able to incur any type of back pain, neck or arms .
The rugby position
When the reclining and cradle positions fail to work well, new mothers are usually advised to try the rugby or arm position . To be able to perform this position, the nursing pillow is absolutely essential. You will need to place the nursing pillow around your waist. The child must be placed lying next to you , with his feet facing the back of the chair or towards the headboard of the bed. The baby’s head will thus be directly under the breast . Obviously, the mother must stand as much as possible with her back very straight.
This is an excellent position for women who need a little help from gravity to get the milk down, for women who have had a caesarean section and who experience pain in position for the baby to be in contact with. the belly, for women who want to breastfeed their twins at the same time in a comfortable way.
Breastfeeding while lying down
Lie down. Place the baby right next to you, also lying down, with his face turned towards the breast resting on the bed or sofa. Mum and baby must be belly to belly. This is obviously an excellent position for night feedings , so that the mother does not have to get up to give milk to her baby, so that it is possible to promote a certain continuity in rest and ensure that the baby falls asleep immediately after the feed. any kind of difficulty. However, it is also the ideal position for women who have undergone a caesarean section or who, due to stitches, are unable to get up because they experience excessive pain.
The vertical position
The vertical or koala position is in our opinion an excellent position especially for slightly older children , who now know how to stand independently with their heads straight. In practice, the baby sits on the thigh or side of the mother, with the back and head straight and feeds from the breast. Although it is suitable for slightly older children, it is also possible to adopt it on newborns as long as you obviously pay attention to offer the right support to the head. With newborns it is a little less comfortable, we must admit, but it is indicated in case the baby suffers from gastroesophageal reflux or if there is an ongoing ear infection that with another position could cause the baby not little pain.
A few little tips
The ones we have just indicated are the most classic positions for breastfeeding and the most common ones, but as we said at the beginning they are certainly not the only possible positions and every mother over the weeks manages to find the one that is best for her and for her baby. As you have seen, having a nursing pillow is very useful. That said, we feel compelled to give you some little tips .
Try to make sure that at the time of feeding you have everything you might need at hand , water, snacks, a magazine to read, some music, the television remote control, a sheet to cover the baby in the if necessary, a bib or a towel. It is also often helpful to have the phone close at hand. Otherwise how could you be able to get up to answer a phone call, perhaps even a rather important one? Then you don’t have to be in a hurry and don’t listen to those who say that babies must be attached to the breast for just a few minutes. Children know how to regulate themselves, we can assure you, and for sure being in contact with your puppy for a few more moments can only be good for both him and you of course, dear mothers.
If you want to listen to some music or watch television, make sure you keep the volume not too high . This is in order not to distract the children. This is a precaution to be taken especially during the very first weeks of life of the puppies, when breastfeeding has not yet started at its best and there is a need to create the right conditions.
Finally, if you cannot find the right position, if you think that the baby is not able to latch on well, if you believe that he is not growing properly, we advise you to rely on the pediatrician or on a breastfeeding specialist . Usually, even directly at the hospitals, weekly meetings dedicated to breastfeeding are available today, with experts who are involved in helping mothers find the best positions and understand how to solve every little obstacle that surrounds their path.