The many an­gles to breastfeeding

Four ba­sic po­si­tions in which you can breast­feed your baby. De­cide which one works best for you and your lit­tle one, ad­vises Yolandi Jor­daan

Your Baby & Toddler - - Contents -

RUGBY/FOOT­BALL HOLD

Hold your baby by your side, tilted slightly to­wards you and with her nose at nip­ple height. Her body is un­der your arm on the same side where you’re feed­ing, and her legs are bent up be­hind your body. You can sup­port your baby with your hand at the base of her neck and shoul­ders. Your arm forms a C shape. Place a firm cush­ion un­der your baby. IDEAL FOR: This po­si­tion is com­fort­able for moms who had a cae­sar, have big breasts or flat or in­verted nip­ples, be­cause you can eas­ily con­trol your baby’s po­si­tion. This po­si­tion also works well for small ba­bies or those bat­tling to latch, as you can eas­ily guide your baby to your nip­ple. Moms with twins also pre­fer the rugby po­si­tion, as both can nurse si­mul­ta­ne­ously, one on each side.

SIDE-LY­ING PO­SI­TION

In this po­si­tion, you and baby lie with your bel­lies against each other. If you’re on your left side, put baby down on her side fac­ing you, and with her ch­est against yours. Your right arm sup­ports her body and your right hand sup­ports her head. You can also sup­port her head in the crook of your arm. Place a cush­ion be­tween your legs or be­hind your back for com­fort and sup­port. IDEAL FOR: This po­si­tion al­lows you to rest while you’re feed­ing, and it’s es­pe­cially pop­u­lar for night feeds in bed. It’s also com­fort­able if you’ve had a cae­sar or epi­siotomy, as breastfeeding straight af­ter­wards can be un­com­fort­able. It’s per­haps wise to en­sure your baby is manag­ing to latch prop­erly be­fore try­ing this po­si­tion. You can of course also swop left and right.

CROSSOVER HOLD

Hold your baby on your lap with the op­po­site arm to the breast you’re nurs­ing from. For in­stance if you’re feed­ing from your right breast, hold your baby with your left arm. Turn your baby’s body so that her ch­est and belly are fac­ing you. Sup­port her neck with your fin­gers and sup­port her shoul­der and up­per back with the palm of your hand. You can place a cush­ion on your lap, un­der­neath your baby. IDEAL FOR: This way of nurs­ing is ideal if you and your baby are still learn­ing the breastfeeding dance, be­cause you have a good view of how she’s latch­ing. Pre­emies or ba­bies who are weak find this po­si­tion easy, since your hand of­fers ex­tra sup­port and you can guide your baby to where she should latch. The po­si­tion also of­fers loads of skin-to-skin con­tact.

CRA­DLE HOLD

Sit on the bed with some cush­ions around you, or on a chair with arm­rests. Hold your baby on your lap, at the same height as your breasts. Sup­port your baby’s head in the crook of your arm while you hold her close against your body. Her face, belly and knees should face your belly. You can place a cush­ion un­der your arm for sup­port. IDEAL FOR: The cra­dle hold is the most com­mon nurs­ing po­si­tion and works well for some­what older ba­bies who have a strong neck and who latch well. If you’ve had a cae­sar, this po­si­tion could ini­tially be un­com­fort­able be­cause there’s pres­sure on your belly. Some moms also find it dif­fi­cult to con­trol the head of their new­born. But try it – you might find it com­fort­able from day one! YB

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