Laid Back Breastfeeding
The Biological Nursing position was a game changer for me and I hope it will be for you too! If you are expecting or have a newborn at home, give this position a try. Not only will it save your back, but there a ton of evidence to say that baby is actually in a really great position to maximize their feeding and minimize the discomfort you may feel!
(PS- and because I’m all about making life easier for you, you don’t even have to get out of bed to try this one!)
Want more info on Laid-Back Breastfeeding? Check out this La Leche League article! And if you caught that little snippet at the end, one of the KEYS to breastfeeding in the early days is Skin-To-Skin contact – Read more about The Benefits of Skin-To-Skin!
Tell me in the comments below: Have you tried this position? Will you?
Hey there, and welcome to another episode of Your Empowered Birth. My name is Lara Proud, I’m a Registered Nurse and I am here to talk to you this week about one trick that is going to help you with breastfeeding postpartum.
Breastfeeding can be one of the trickiest things about postpartum.
It’s one of the things that people hear about all of the time, from friends and family members who’ve experienced difficulties, or who have gone through it themselves, and just want to come out on the other side feeling a little more confident this time. One of the tricks that I’m going to show you this week is backed by evidence, and what it is, is called laid-back nursing.
Laid-back nursing, biological nurturing, biological breastfeeding position, these are all names for the exact same thing. But this position is honestly one of the biggest lifesavers.
I will explain why, but first, I’m going to show you what I mean by it.
*Lara sitting on bed with pillows behind for support*
One of the ways to do the biological breastfeeding position is to actually prop yourself up in bed. This is easily done in a hospital bed, right after delivery or if you deliver at home. Grab a couple of extra pillows and basically all you do is lay back, get yourself comfortable, bring baby to your chest and allow them to drop just a little bit. This is the laid-back position. So when your body is reclined, you’re in quite a comfortable position – meaning that it’s going to be easier for both you and baby to be in this position for an extended period of time. Baby is happily and easily able to suck and swallow, they have lots of free movement of their jaw, and are able to really get a good latch.
*Lara Sitting Up On A Couch*
Another really common way to do the biological breastfeeding position is to sit on a couch or chair. Find yourself a really comfy spot, get yourself a glass of water, and have everything around you that you need so that when you get into this position, you’re nice and comfortable, and you’re ready to go. When baby is teeny tiny, but still in that newborn stage, it might be a little tedious to try and get them latched on if you’re already laying back. So baby if they are actually latched on while you’re still in a bit of an upright position, and then you just recline yourself back into a nice seated position, it can be a smooth transition. Baby is either slightly sideways laying on you or they can be a little more up and down, depending on how you want to do it. You can use pillows to prop baby up, you can use pillows to prop yourself up, and it’s actually very comfortable.
So now that you have an idea of a couple of different ways of doing that breastfeeding technique
Let’s talk about the benefits of laid-back breastfeeding.
One of the big benefits, right off the bat, is being able to have your baby get a proper latch. When baby is actually laying down on top of you, baby is able to take their mouth, open it up wide, put the angle that they need to be able to get the most breast tissue in their mouth. It’s not called nipple feeding – it is called breastfeeding for a reason – and it’s because you need to have a lot of breast tissue in the baby’s mouth to be able to have a good, effective latch and get that milk flowing.
Another really neat thing about this biological breastfeeding position, is not only baby able to get a really deep latch, but the milk transfer is also much easier for them to manage. When baby is laying on top of your chest the milk has to be able to be drawn out against gravity. It teaches babies to suck really well, it teaches them a proper latch, and it also helps them to control the flow of the milk.
Upwards of 30% of the population, if not more, have something called a perceived oversupply.
Now, an oversupply is a topic we will cover another day, but it could caused by any number of reasons (check out this post about Oversupply for more info). With this perceived oversupply, sometimes baby can sputter, they can cough, they can choke a little bit, and it can be really difficult to get a good feed in because they’re trying to just keep up with the flow. Having baby back in that biological breastfeeding position helps them to be able to control how much is being taken out at a time and use gravity to their advantage.
Mind you, if you have a really strong letdown, they may still have a bit of an issue. But again, gravity is going to help because anything extra will just come out of their mouth.
Also good to know, biological breastfeeding position, or laid-back nursing, is not just for people with oversupplies. It has been found in recent research that if you are using this position when you first start nursing, or for baby’s first latch, it is actually showing that babies have higher rates of being able to breastfeed, lower rates of weight loss, and are able to stay breastfeeding for longer because there is much less pain and latch issues associated with this position.
So the more time that you are able to spend skin-to-skin with your baby, it helps to encourage, not only your milk supply, but also your baby to be able to smell and know where to go when they’re hungry.
There’s so many different benefits and so many bonuses to being able to this position!
I would love to know if it is something that you have ever heard of, if you have ever tried, and if you plan on trying it now?