Babies are born with the reflexes needed to nurse, but that doesn’t mean it happens automatically. Here are three tips to help you start breastfeeding.
Babies are born with the reflexes needed to nurse, but that doesn't mean it happens automatically. Here are three great tips that can help:
- First, help your baby latch on right. Pull him close. When his chin hits the breast, his mouth will open wide. Stroking his cheek or lips will encourage this response. Aim the lower lip well below the nipple so the baby gets a large, mouthful of breast. Your breast shouldn't hurt when doing this.
- Second, find a comfortable position. Try not to lean forward or back. A pillow tucked behind your back supports you, while a nursing pillow supports your baby. Switching between different positions helps prevent soreness and clogged milk ducts.
- Finally, keep up your milk supply. Let your baby nurse on-demand and alternate the breast you offer first. Or, offer both breasts at each feeding.
You can get more tips from a lactation consultant, doula, nurse, or peer counselor. Keep a phone number handy for troubleshooting help from an expert or a friend who has breastfed.
With practice and time, both you and your baby will soon get the hang of breastfeeding.