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Positioning & Attachment

When learning how to breastfeed getting the position and attachment right will help make feeding pain-free for you, establish a good milk supply and enable your baby to thrive.

There are lots of different positions for breastfeeding. You just need to check the following, whichever position you are using:

Are your baby’s head and body in a straight line?
If not, your baby might not be able to swallow easily.

Are you holding your baby close to you?
Support their neck, shoulders, and back and avoid putting pressure on the back of your baby’s head. Your baby should be able to tilt their head back easily and open their mouth wide. They shouldn’t have to reach out to feed.

Are you comfortable?
It’s worth getting comfortable before a feed, although it’s ok to change your position slightly once the baby is attached to the breast. A footstool and cushions might help. Make sure if you use cushions that your baby isn’t positioned too high to feed from your breast.

Is your baby’s nose opposite your nipple?
Your baby needs to get a big mouthful of breast from underneath the nipple. Placing your baby with their nose level with your nipple will allow them to reach up and attach to the breast well.

Take a look at these videos for more support:

If you are confident that your baby’s positioning and attachment are good and your baby is still struggling to feed, it would be good to have a full feeding assessment at one of our infant feeding clinics as there may be a restriction to their tongue movement (tongue tie).

Who Can Help?

If you are struggling with breastfeeding take a look at our pages on Introducing Breastfeeding and Breastfeeding Basics.

Your Midwife or Health Visitor may have given you details of local support available already. If you have any other questions or concerns, you can contact the Healthy Child Programme by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520631590. Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays.

We have weekly infant feeding assessment clinics across the county and trained staff who are available to help at home when needed.

If your baby is less than 28 days old you can also contact your local Midwifery team.

            

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Disclaimer

Norfolk Children and Young People’s Services deliver a wide range of NHS services and support free of charge. If you are not sure whether a specific service is available from the NHS, please call Just One Number on 0300 300 0123. We may also provide information about services delivered by other organisations or operate in locations owned by other organisations. This does not mean we recommend or endorse these services or organisations. It is the responsibility of the person wishing to use the service, to ensure that the service provider is qualified or accredited to deliver that service and to find out whether or not any fees apply.

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