Breastfeeding Positions

Best Breastfeeding Positions

The last thing you want to do is start out breastfeeding uncomfortable.

I’ve seen it too often: mom hunches over, cranes her neck and tries to latch baby. Then baby latches and…

They can’t move.

By the middle of feeding time, mamas back is screaming at her and she may even start to shake. Often, the latch is lost and they have to start over.

That’s why it’s so important to start out comfortable!

Use as many pillows as you need to prop yourself up, grab a stool to bring your feet higher, anything you need! Then, choose one of these fantastic breastfeeding positions to breastfeed your baby!

Cross-Cradle Pose

In this pose, baby and mommy are “tummy to tummy”, and mommy supports baby with the arm opposite the breast baby is feeding from.

Offer baby support with your hand, but make sure that baby can still tilt their head back while feeding. This position frees the hand on the feeding side for use with breast compression if needed.

Cradle Pose

Cradle pose is similar to cross-cradle, but baby’s head is supported by the arm on the same side as the breast.

The other arm may be used as extra support behind baby’s shoulders. Many moms find placing a pillow under their arms makes the feeding session more comfortable and offers more support.

Football Pose

Football pose places baby at the mother’s side, with support coming from the arm on the same side as the breast baby is feeding from.

Football pose can be helpful for women with big breasts, as the hand on the opposite side is free for any breast manipulation that may be necessary.

Reclining Position

In this position, mommy should comfortably lean back against a pillow or other supportive surface. Baby will lay on mommy’s stomach, and may have head support with mommy’s hand.

Again, it is important to remember that baby needs freedom to move their head if necessary. Sometimes this position is useful for women with a forceful letdown.

Australian Pose

This is also called the “down under” pose because the mother is down under baby. The baby is lying on mommy’s chest, and may be supported by either of mommy’s hands.

This position may be necessary for mothers that have an extremely forceful letdown or an overabundance of milk. The baby can more easily control the flow of milk so they are not overwhelmed.

Side-Lying Pose

Both mommy and baby are laying on their sides, facing each other with side-lying pose.

Baby can be supported with mommy’s free upper arm if needed, or mommy may place her supporting arm under baby’s head.

Most important: be comfortable! Make the breastfeeding experience positive by choosing the right position for you and your baby.

If you need professional help to find out which position is best for you, Little Bear Care offers online lactation counseling from the comfort of your home! Click here for breastfeeding help!

This content is for educational purposes only. For medical emergencies, please contact your primary health care provider or dial 911.

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