How to Help Baby Latch
While breastfeeding can be a beautiful experience for mothers and their babies, it isn’t always sunshine and rainbows. In fact, most mothers find themselves struggling with breastfeeding at some point. As mothers start breastfeeding, one of the most common challenges is trouble with their baby latching properly. This can cause some serious frustration for an already exhausted mother. If that’s you, hang in there, as there are ways you can help your baby latch better.
Babywearing or using a baby carrier can be a great way to help your baby latch, with many additional benefits for both mom and baby too! Keep reading as we share how to help baby latch better using your Tushbaby carrier that can double as a breastfeeding pillow. Save your back while getting your baby to latch and feed anywhere with Tushbaby, the ultimate baby carrier design. Activate GO mode, with Tushbaby you’ll be unstoppable.
How to Help Baby Latch Better
Table of Contents
- Signs of a good latch
- How to help your baby latch on the breast
- Common breastfeeding latch problems
- What to do when baby is not latching
- How to break baby’s latch on the breast comfortably
Signs of a good latch
So how do you know if your baby truly has a good latch? First things first, a good latch shouldn’t cause you pain. If a first attempt at latching is causing you pain or discomfort, you can use a clean finger to break the latch and try again. Here are a few signs that you can look out for once you’re comfortable in order to know your baby has a good latch on your nipple:
- You see your baby’s jaw, ears, or temple moving - this is a great sign of a good latch that results in sucking!
- You see or hear your baby swallowing - now that your baby is latched and suckling, hearing or seeing them swallow can help reassure that the milk is flowing properly.
- Your baby’s mouth is open wide around your breast, not just the nipple. The wider their mouth is open, the better success they will have in latching and getting milk.
- Your baby’s lips are turned out - by this, we mean kind of like a fish!
- Your baby is close enough that their chin touches your breast - keeping your baby close helps keep the nipple in reach.
How to help your baby latch on the breast:
- Check your latching and holding position. Be sure your baby is properly supported so that their head, neck, and spine are aligned. Your baby’s chin should not be tucked into their chest. Achieving the right holding position can be done much more comfortably with the aid of a carrier or nursing pillow. Tushbaby’s hip seat carrier doubles as both, making it a breastfeeding must-have for nursing moms.
- Encourage baby to open their mouth. To encourage your baby to open their mouth for nursing, you can brush your nipple gently against their lip to let them know it’s time to open wide. Encouraging your baby to open their mouth widely will help in ensuring a good latch.
- Bring baby to your breast for breastfeeding posture best practices. Not only should you be looking out for your baby’s posture, but you should also be keeping yourself comfortable and safe too. With so much time spent breastfeeding, improper posture can start to cause aches and pains. To practice good breastfeeding posture, you’ll want to bring your baby to your breast rather than leaning forward to get your breast to your baby. By strapping your Tushbaby carrier high and tight above your waist, you can provide your baby with a comfortable place to lay while getting them close to your breast. Your back and arms will thank you for the added support the ergonomic hipseat provides.
- Look and listen during feeding. You can look and listen for cues that are a sign your baby has a good latch and is getting that liquid gold. Once your baby is latched and sucking, you should be able to see their temple, ears, or jaw moving slightly. This can indicate that they are swallowing milk, along with the sounds of sucking.
Common breastfeeding latch problems
One of the most common breastfeeding problems when it comes to latching is due to poor positioning. If your baby’s body is too far from yours, your nipple will simply be out of reach for your baby. Also, poor positioning can cause discomfort, which can make breastfeeding a challenge for moms. You’ll want to keep your baby close to your body, well supported, and facing you for the best position to achieve latching success. Using your Tushbaby in the feeding position is a great way to do just that.
Another common problem with breastfeeding is due to a lack of milk production. Pumping is a great way to keep milk production going, which is why a breast pump is on the list of breastfeeding must-haves.
What to do when baby is not latching
When your baby isn’t latching, it can be easy to feel stressed or overwhelmed. While easier said than done, the best thing to do is to relax and keep yourself (and your baby) calm. Here are a few things you can try to help your baby latch better:
- Skin-to-skin: Because skin-to-skin promotes bonding and relaxation, this can be incredibly helpful in creating an environment for latching success. Not only that, but this is also a great way to bond with baby while breastfeeding.
- Finding a quiet place: A quiet place can promote a relaxing feeding environment and mean fewer distractions for your baby. With less stimulation, your baby may be able to solely keep their eye on the prize and focus on that latch after all.
- Try letting baby find nipple on their own: While still keeping your baby supported, allow them to guide themselves to your nipple. Keeping your baby close to your breast will help them achieve this, so strap that Tushbaby high and tight to keep ‘em close! Our hip seat carrier doubles as a breastfeeding pillow, which is yet another way it can help support you and your baby.
How to break baby’s latch on the breast comfortably
To break a baby’s latch from your nipple comfortably, use a clean finger and slide it into your baby’s mouth starting at the side of their gums. Do this while pressing against your nipple and work your way to release their latch. Pressing against your breast will help prevent your baby from going back to bite or suckle at the nipple while trying to release their latch.
Now that you know how important proper breastfeeding posture is for a good latch, you may be asking yourself, ‘are breastfeeding pillows worth it?’ As you’ll read, the answer is yes, especially when they can double as a baby carrier. The Tushbaby doesn’t stop there, though. Learn more about how the Tushbaby can make life with a baby easier.