Whilst we are all aware of the immense benefits to mother and child of breastfeeding, some mums may face challenges when they try to do the best thing. However with a little guidance and simple practice, feeding can be the joy for both mum and baby that you long it to be.
• The first thing to get right is to be relaxed, and that goes for both of you. Find a quiet, calm and comfortable place to sit, where you can have your back well supported as you are seated. Use cushions to make yourself comfortable first and then worry about your little one. Next make sure you have other cushions to use to bring your baby to the level of your breast.
• Positioning your baby correctly is the next step. There are a number of options open to you and each one can be tried until you find the choice which suits you best. Holding baby like a rugby ball with feet behind you and head to your breast may not be conventional but it works wonderfully for many mums. Cradling your baby across your lap is a more customary approach; using your opposite arm to the breast that baby latches on to, for support of the little body. Either way, ensure your baby’s head is supported adequately.
• You may even find that lying on your side with baby lying parallel to you works for your unique partnership. There is nothing wrong with this if it helps breastfeeding go smoothly. Just remember not to relax too much that you fall asleep.
• When you are both comfortable and positioned to begin, the next important step is to ensure the correct latch. This refers to the way baby takes the nipple and suckles accordingly. With an incorrect latch there can be many problems which derail this precious time otherwise. Sore nipples, failure to thrive, and suckling too long may occur. One simple way to get this right is to make sure that your baby opens their mouth wide and well. This will help you position enough breast tissue along the tongue. To do this, tickle baby on the cheek or around the mouth. Infant senses will smell, feel and see this and immediately respond. If your milk is not already flowing, or ‘let-down’ happened, massage your nipple gently to stimulate a drop or two to gently encourage your baby to latch.
• When you feel that there is no more milk, or even if your baby has dropped asleep, break the suction by putting your clean baby finger in your baby’s mouth to remove the breast. You can then proceed to the other side, or not if baby is satisfied.
Don’t worry if you find yourself not breastfeeding according to exact custom. What is more important is finding what works for you both.
Watch this short film from Lansinoh for some extra advise on latching on. The Lansinoh brand started over 25 years ago by a breastfeeding mum who struggled with the pain full side effects of breastfeeding her new baby and looked to find her own solutions to this common problem.
Lansinoh believes when mums choose to breastfeed, they should have the support and encouragement they need to experience all of its benefits, and ensure baby feels the same. They’ll always take mothers seriously and their needs personally, creating high-quality products mums want and can trust as they nurture their babies and develop a special bond only formed in motherhood.