Signs your baby has a good latch

Breastfeeding is very much a skill that both you and baby need to learn and master. Many Mamas struggle with pain or with breastfeeding issues because they don't know what they don't know. They think that it's normal.

 

They don't know that pain isn't normal, that it takes time to learn how to breastfeed your baby, that you need to reach out for support.

 

There is nothing wrong with asking for help. When we learn any other new skill, we get help, we don't expect to have it mastered right away. Well, breastfeeding is no different. It takes time and practice and if no one has told how what a good latch looks and feels like, how would you know.

  • Breastfeeding isn't painful. Initially your breasts will be sore, but should resolve after 1-2 weeks⠀
  • Your baby's upper lip should be curled up and their bottom lip curled down⠀
  • They should be latched onto your entire nipple and most, if not all, of your areola ⠀
  • Baby has an asymmetrical latch, meaning you will be able to see some of your areola above their upper lip
  • Baby's chin is touching your breast and their nose is slightly tilted away
  • Your nipple should remain round not flattened or creased⠀
  • You will hear your baby swallow⠀

Signs your baby has a shallow latch:

  • You hear a clicking sound when they are feeding⠀
  • Your nipple is flattened or creased
  • Baby only latches to your nipple⠀
  • Breastfeeding hurts and your nipples are bruised, cracked or chapped
  • Your baby's cheeks are dimpled while they are feeding

Many Mamas do not know the difference between a good latch and a shallow one. If you notice that your baby isn't latched properly, take them off of your breast (by inserting your pinky into the corner of their mouth) and then relatch them.

 

It's important that you correct a shallow latch to:⠀

  • avoid damaging your nipples
  • teach your baby how to properly latch and effectively breastfeed
  • avoid it affecting your milk supply

Mamas it can take weeks, even a month to really establish breastfeeding. Give yourself and the baby grace. It is a learned skill and takes time. Many Mamas do not know this and think there is something wrong with them. There is nothing wrong with you. You're learning a new skill and it takes time.⠀

Don't be afraid to reach out for support. I am offering in-home visits, following the guidelines of the health authorities. Or if you aren't local, I also offer virtual support.

Good luck, Mamas!

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- Agnes (MamaBear)

About Agnes Mayer

Hi, I'm Agnes Mayer, owner of MamaBear Holistic Care. I am a Mama, wife, and RN with over 13 years of experience working in labour and delivery. I use my experience to support Mamas in whatever part of motherhood they find themselves in, whether they are newly pregnant or they have a toddler in need of sleep support. My goal is to guide you through motherhood and make it as easy of a transition as possible.

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