Breastfeeding can be beautiful and easy when it works but in the early days when mum and baby are both learning the ropes it can lead to aches and pains in all sorts of places which can make the process stressful. Here are some tips for making breastfeeding more comfortable:
- Sit with your back against the back of the chair or put cushions behind you to support your back.
- Bring baby into you – don’t lean forwards to make your nipple reach baby’s mouth as this puts extra strain on your back.
- Don’t rely on breastfeeding pillows – if you are shown how to hold your baby at the breast correctly you won’t need the assistance of a breastfeeding pillow – these type of nursing aids don’t always place baby at the right height for your breast/nipple which can interfere with the correct positioning of baby and the comfort of your back. They can also create extra insulation for you and baby – making you both feel warm. Also remember that when you’re out and about with baby it will be difficult to take your breastfeeding pillow everywhere you go! If you feel that you need some support due to the size and weight of your baby then push a normal pillow or cushion down your side to then rest your elbows on.
- Relax those shoulders – it’s so common & you don’t realise you’re doing it – it’s one of the first things I tell a new mummy when I’m helping her to breastfeed. When you’re learning to breastfeeding there can be a tendency to feel anxious in both body and mind as you get to grips with everything. You may wonder if you’re “doing it right” or worry if your baby “is on right” or if they are “getting enough”. The result of this is a tense body which can lead to muscular aches and pains; so once baby is latched on take a deep breath & relax those shoulders!
- Make sure you have everything you need within arm’s reach –it’s important to be well hydrated whilst breastfeeding so a drink is essential. A healthy snack is also a good idea to keep your energy levels up plus don’t forget your phone!
Breastfeeding does get easier I promise! If you have any concerns about your breastfeeding please seek advice from your Midwife or other breastfeeding expert. They can also put you in touch with local breastfeeding support groups where you can meet other mums in your area who are breastfeeding – you will find lots of support and advice at groups like this. We also have our “Bosom Buddies” Breastfeeding Oils which we have developed to support your body and mind during your breastfeeding journey, click here to find out more.
Thanks for reading
Jane – The Midwife
For more blogs on pregnancy, birth and life as a new mum please visit www.naturalbirthingcompany.com/blogs/news
If you are unsure about anything or have any concerns whilst pregnant please speak to your Midwife.