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Video:Breastfeeding Positions

with Melissa Nagin

Not sure how to hold your baby during breastfeeding? A lactation expert shows you three different breastfeeding positions.See Transcript

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Transcript:Breastfeeding Positions

Hi, I'm Melissa Nagin and welcome to About.com Health. Breastfeeding is the most natural way to feed a baby, but that doesn't mean that nursing moms don't run into problems along the way.

Perfect positioning and latch on are the keys to a positive breastfeeding experience. Today, I'll show you how to properly position your baby in three different ways.

Hold Your Baby in a U Shape

Place a nursing pillow on your lap so that the baby is right at breast height.

Tuck the tush of the baby into the crook of your arm, your forearm going up the length of his back and his head supported with your thumb and forefinger behind his ears, to have total control over his entire body for the initial latch.

With your other arm, hold it in a "U" shape, not a "C" but a "U," in order to make a sandwich for the baby and make the latch on much easier.

Breastfeed Using the Football Hold

In the football hold, you'll have your nursing pillow on your lap once again, and this time, your arm will be holding the baby in a clutch hold.

So the baby's tush again will be tucked in the crook of your arm of the same breast that you're feeding from this time.

Forearm goes straight up the length of the back again, the head is supported behind the ears with your thumb and forefinger.

You're going to hold your breast in a "C" because the sandwich is different this time. The baby is going to be looking up at you. And so we want to make that latch as compact as possible.

Breastfeed Using the Cradle Hold

For the older baby, the regular cradle hold is a very nice position. The baby is held in the crook of the mom's arm with his head there this time.

An older baby can nurse in virtually any position they want. Their head control is much better, and they know how to latch already. So however the mom is most comfortable will work for the baby as well.

In this position, we have the baby being held with two arms, cradled in there just like a little cradle.

You can always find the help and support you need by contacting a board certified lactation consultant.

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