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Breastfeeding Positions

BREASTFEEDING: Getting your baby well positioned on the breast is probably the most important thing to do in the early days and weeks for breastfeeding and it can prevent problems occurring.

Try not to breastfeed sitting up in bed, as you won't be in the right position - your back needs to be upright, and well supported, so your breasts are not tilted away from the baby.

Sitting comfortably

Choose a comfortable position to breast-feed, one that lets you feed without straining forward, leaning backward or hurting your stitches or caesarean wound. Sit on a chair with your thighs flat (you may need a footstool or thick books to bring your legs to a position where they're not sloped upwards or downwards or cross-legged on the floor. Use pillows, or a cushion, to bring your baby up to the level of your breasts.

Lying down

Another good position is lying alongside the baby, with her/his head at the level of your breasts. This will need practice, and some women find it hard to do without help until they get used to it. The baby should be close, facing your body, with her/his chest close to you; there should be no need to turn his/her head toward your breast. Hold him/her with the back and neck well supported. Many women find this easiest by using the arm on the opposite side from the breast they're feeding from, with the baby's bottom cradled in the mother's elbow and the baby's neck and head supported by the mother's wrist and hand.

Over time, you'll work out a number of different positions that are good for you and your baby.

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