Despite being one of those most natural things in the world, breastfeeding doesn’t always come naturally. There are so many things to know about breastfeeding, and it takes a lot of practice to get right, especially as a new mother.
You might find it easier to get your baby to latch while lying down or sitting upright. It can take patience, practice and the right position to get a good latch, but once your baby has, it can be a wonderful experience for both of you!
In honour of World Breastfeeding Week, we want to share 8 different breastfeeding positions with pictures to help you find the right one for you and your baby.
One of the most popular breastfeeding positions, the cradle is a great position for newborns. Lie your baby down horizontally, facing your chest, and place their head on your forearm to support their back.
This position might work best for babies who struggle to latch on. Unlike the cradle position, instead of the crook of your arm supporting the head and back, your open hand and arm is holding your baby. Hold your baby with the arm that is opposite to the breast you’re feeding from, and use your other hand to hold your breast.
#3 Back lying
Lie on your back against pillows to give yourself a slightly inclined position, hold your baby against your chest and relax! The laid back position for breastfeeding is ideal for babies prone to reflux after feeding.
If you have large breasts or have had a c-section, the football hold breastfeeding position might be the most comfortable for you. Just like holding a football, tuck your baby under your arm and to the side of your chest, using your open hand to support their head.
#5 Australian Hold
Also known as the saddle, the simple Australian hold works well for older babies who can hold their own head up and are tall enough to sit on your lap. Sit upright, allowing your baby to sit on one of your legs and face you to latch on.
#6 Inverted Side Lying
If you’ve got a tender area and feel like you’re not completely emptying your breast, the inverted side lying breastfeeding position is a great way to make that sore spot a little more comfortable as your baby’s mouth will be latching on at a different angle
#7 Side Lying Cradle
Using the cradle breastfeeding technique to hold your baby, lie on your back and rest on your side, and use your opposite hand to guide their mouths to your nipple.
#8 Side Lying
If you’re tired (which, as a new mother, we’d be more surprised if you’re not!), feeling under the weather, or have a sleepy baby, the full side lying position is great. On your bed, floor or sofa, lie down on your side in a comfortable position. Lie your baby down facing you and tuck your arm under your head.
Remember, it’s most important that both you and your baby are comfortable in the process. Don’t feel disheartened if your baby doesn’t latch on straight away. Practice makes perfect so keep trying until breastfeeding becomes a breeze and you can build that strong emotional bond with your baby.