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Learn about breastfeeding positions, tips, where to get support and how to continue when going back to work or school.

Breastfeeding is natural, but isn't always easy... like anything new, it can take some time to figure out! Get help right away if things aren't going well.

Breastfeeding tips

The following tips may help you and your baby learn how to breastfeed.

Helping your baby latch

It’s important that your baby takes a large amount of the darker area around your nipple (the areola) into her mouth and not just the nipple. Your baby’s mouth will probably cover more of the areola with the lower jaw.

This allows your baby to “milk” the breast and not hurt your nipple.

Tips to help baby latch:

  • Tummy to mommy: Turn your baby toward you.
  • Face to breast: Support your baby so that her head is level to your breast.
  • Nose to nipple: Your baby’s nose should be at the same level as your nipple.
  • Baby’s chin and lower lip should touch your breast first.
  • Wait for your baby to open her mouth wide over your nipple.
  • More of the breast below the nipple (not above the nipple) should be in baby’s mouth.
  • Your baby’s chin should be against your breast and her nose should be slightly back from the breast.

If your baby is not latching, try hand expressing right away, so that your milk supply is being stimulated. This may also help to interest your baby and make it easier for her to latch.

Baby-led latching (Laid back breastfeeding)

Babies are born with a natural instinct to latch and feed at the breast. Baby-led latching is a good way for your baby to learn breastfeeding.

It’s also helpful if breastfeeding is not going well or if you have sore nipples.

How to do baby-led latching:

  • Position yourself in a laid back position, propped up with pillows.
  • Place your baby skin-to-skin and tummy-to-tummy on your chest with his head near your breast.
  • Your baby will start rooting (looking for the nipple) by bobbing his head up and down.
  • Help to support your baby’s bottom and back while he is rooting. This allows him to tilt his head back a little, which helps him to latch.
  • Your baby will eventually find your nipple, though he may find it with his hands first.
  • Your baby will open his mouth wide, pushing his chin into your breast, and latch on.
  • When your baby has latched on, you can adjust his position and provide support to keep him in place. Keeping his bottom tucked in helps to keep him latched well.

Breastfeeding FAQ

Many babies wake up more often when:

  • they are having a growth spurt
  • they are sick
  • they are learning a new skill
  • their mother has recently returned to work or school

Almost every parent of young children wishes for more sleep. Here are some tips to help you survive the lack of sleep.

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