Basic Breastfeeding Positions
While there's no one right way to hold your baby when you're nursing, here are some of the most popular "holds." Try 'em out and see which ones work for you!
The Cradle This is a right breast, right arm position. While sitting in a comfy chair or on the couch (leaving one hand free for the remote, of course!), cradle your baby in your arm with her head at your right breast, her belly against your body and her legs near your left breast. If you like, use a pillow or the arm of the chair to support your right arm as you use your left hand to help position your breast in baby's mouth. You may need to adjust baby's height (i.e. move your arm up or down) to ensure she's got a good latch and suck, because it's easy to end up with sore nipples if you're holding her too high or too low in this position. Sounds tricky, but you'll get the hang of it!
The Modified Cradle This is a right breast, left arm position (say that two times fast!). Hold your baby cradled against your body with your left arm supporting her body, her head in your hand (so snuggly!). Use your right hand to help position your breast in your baby's mouth. You may want to support your left arm‐and your baby&emdash;with a rolled up blanket or a small pillow so it doesn't fall asleep!
The Clutch or Football Hold Pretend your baby is a handbag or a football—or not. Cradle your baby in your arm. Use your hand of the same arm to support the baby's neck and nestle your baby's side closely against your side. Your baby's feet and legs should be tucked under your arm. With your baby facing you, lift his head so that his mouth is aligned with your nipple. Pillows can help get your baby comfortable. Lots of pillows!
Side-lying You might want to save this position for when you're feeling like a breastfeeding pro since it takes some practice to perfect. But once you get the hang of this position, you'll be grateful since it will help you get some rest!
Lie down on your side and place the baby on her side facing you. Position the baby's mouth so it is lined up with your nipple. Be sure to have lots of pillows handy to help you get into a comfortable position (you'll want a pillow or a rolled-up blanked behind your baby's back so she won't roll on her back).