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after delivery

Breast-feeding positions

Find out which position works best for you and your baby

There are three common breast-feeding positions. You may find that one works well for you, or that you and your baby prefer to change positions. Remember to keep the baby's nose clear so he or she can breathe while feeding.

Cradle position

  • Sit up in a chair or in bed
    • Place a pillow behind your back for support in bed
    • Make sure your chair has a high back and is comfortable
    • Place a pillow in your lap to help support your arm and the baby
  • Cradle your baby's body in one arm and let the baby's head rest in the bend of your elbow
  • Use your arm to support the baby's back and bottom
  • Gently draw the baby's head to your nipple. Make sure there is proper latch-on

Football hold

  • Sit up in a chair or in bed
    • Place a pillow by your side and under your arm
  • Put the baby on the pillow, with legs toward your back and the baby's head toward the space between your breasts
  • Hold the baby's head in your hand, with your arm supporting the baby's back
  • Place your other hand under your breast, with fingers below the nipple and thumb above the nipple
  • Gently pull the baby close for proper latch-on

Lying down position

  • Lie on your side
    • Place a pillow behind your back for support in bed
  • Lay your baby on its side with the mouth close to your nipple and the feet toward the foot of the bed
  • Lift your breast toward the baby's mouth with your fingers for proper latch-on
  • This position works best when you need to rest or if you need to stay in bed after a Caesarean birth