Breastfeeding With Confidence
Breastfeeding a baby, especially at first, may require learning a new skill. With the right moves and the right accessories, breastfeeding will quickly become part of your daily routine.
Good Positions For Breastfeeding
A maternity nurse or midwife will explain in detail the correct way to position your baby at the breast. When you return home, do not hesitate to contact your health care provider or a lactation consultant if you have any questions.
Breastfeeding is a moment of shared intimacy. For maximum benefit, you must be both comfortable: so your baby can suck better, which helps stimulate your milk production, and prevents physical discomfort such as backaches or sore nipples.
The “Madonna” and the “Football”
One of the best positions to start breastfeeding is with the most traditional position, called the "Madonna". Face your baby towards you, his belly against yours. Place your forearms against his back, put your hand under his bottom, and place your elbow on an armrest for support. With the other hand, you can, if necessary, insert your breast in the baby's mouth. His chin should touch your breast and his nose, your nipple.
Another convenient position is called the "football". As its name suggests, you hold the baby as a football, on your side, up to your waist, cupping him with your arm. His neck rests in the palm of the opposite hand. You can learn about comfortable feeding positions more on the Gerber site.
Get The Right Accessories
A few simple aids can make breastfeeding easier and more successful. Choose clothes well designed for breastfeeding, with openings in the front, such as dresses and blouses. And consider the following accessories, as well:
- The nursing pillow, which can be any rounded wedge, helps your baby to stay in the correct position, and gives you a free hand when nursing.
- Shells or breast pads, disposable or washable, can prevent the milk stains on your clothes. They also keep the nipples dry between feedings, which can help to prevent cracked nipples.
- The nursing bra can help you to breastfeed discreetly and comfortably. To find the right size, it’s usually advised to choose a size up from what you had in the eighth month of pregnancy. Check with a professional where possible, because this is not always the case.
Learn and Build Confidence
As you get a bit of practice, you’ll begin to get more comfortable. It’s simple to know if your baby is in the right position: you should not feel any pain, and your baby should be quiet and slowly sucking. Here are a few common questions, and our suggestions:
- One breast or two during a feeding? The ideal is to always give both breasts to your baby, but nothing prevents you from doing otherwise.
- Breastfeeding twins? Yes, it is possible. Simultaneous breastfeeding is convenient and fast: Adopt the “football” position with both babies, with your infants face to face. You can also take turns to breastfeed them individually - starting with the hungriest.
- Baby a little reluctant to breastfeed? Don’t worry, it can happen. Tickle his upper lip, or give a few caresses on his cheek. Talking softly is also very effective. Don’t force it however: the baby will decide when he wants to drink.
For more information, visit Gerber.com
Keep Everything You Need in Reach
Before breastfeeding, make sure you have everything you need on hand first, such as a glass of water (because breastfeeding makes you thirsty), a diaper, a small blanket and cushion (regular or a breastfeeding pillow).