Breastfeeding is a natural act for babies and mothers, but it’s also a learned behavior that needs some knowledge and practice, especially at the beginning. Investing time early on to practice and get help if you need it means that you and your baby will be able to enjoy the very special bonding that happens during feeding.
The first step to successful breastfeeding is getting you and your baby to feel relaxed and comfortable. Practice breastfeeding comfortably. Find a place where you won’t be disturbed. Preferably somewhere quiet, where you and your baby will feel comfortable and safe, a crying baby is difficult to latch, as the baby is often in too much distress.
If your baby is crying, try to calm her before you begin to breastfeed. Several comfortable positions can be used while breastfeeding.
These include the cradle or cross-cradle, the football hold, or even laying down. There are many positions in which your baby can breastfeed.
The key is to find out which position is comfortable for both you and your baby, as this may change depending on circumstances, successful breastfeeding requires as much contact as possible between your baby’s tongue and palate and your breast.
If your baby doesn’t take enough breast into her mouth, your nipple will push against her hard palate. This is called a shallow latch. With a shallow latch, breastfeeding can be painful, and your baby may not get enough milk or no milk at all.
The friction and pressure from this kind of lead can also lead to painful cracks. The goal is for your baby to take as much breast in the mouth as possible so that your nipple is against the soft palate. You should not feel any pain when the baby suckles.
If the latch isn’t good, gently insert your finger at the corner of the baby’s mouth to break the seal. The baby should release the breast.
Do not pull the breast out of the baby’s mouth, as this can hurt your breast. Then try again to latch your baby.
The baby needs to be held in the correct position to help her achieve an effective latch.
First, the mother’s arm supports the baby while she holds her baby close to facing her. The baby’s ear, shoulder, and hip should be more or less in the line.
The baby’s nose should be near the nipple and her chin should be touching the breast
To encourage her mouth to open wide. You can try touching your baby’s top lip to your nipple, and then moving her away slightly. Repeat until your baby opens wide, and has her tongue forward, as if she is yawning.
waiting until the mouth is wide open, allows the baby to take enough breast into the mouth, ensuring the nipple reaches the soft palate and the tongue cups the breast.
A good, deep latch should feel comfortable for you. Watch and listen for signs that your baby is getting enough.
You should see that her cheeks are full. You don’t hear any drawing of air, you hear the feeding rhythm, suck, swallow breathe. These are all signs that your baby is taking in milk
Once you have a good latch and your baby has started to feed you can both enjoy the special time until your baby falls asleep or releases your breast. This is a sign that she has had enough milk.
Remember, all women have different breast shapes and sizes. So keep trying until you get comfortable breastfeeding.
If you are worried or unsure, get your baby’s latch checked by a healthcare worker. Remember, you and your baby are designed to breastfeed and breast milk is the best milk you can give Your baby.