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Thread: How do you nurse lying down?

  1. #1
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    Default How do you nurse lying down?

    This probably seems like a bit of a silly question, but I can't figure out how to nurse lying down in bed. In the book "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding," there is exactly one picture of this and it's not helpful. I can't get him lined up right with the nipple. I also have only one hand to use -- I can either use it to hold the breast or to hold him. Does anyone have any pointers or pictures I can refer to?

    I can put him in the crook of my arm, but he doesn't seem to like that...while lying down though, I don't really have any control over that arm so can't use it to pull him to the breast.

    Thus far, we have nursed using the cross cradle and football holds. Both of these obviously give me a bit more control over baby's head for positioning. I can't use a cradle hold yet either -- basically for the same reasons (lack of control over head, problems lining up with nipple, inability to pull baby to breast when he opens his mouth).

    He is 2 weeks old and I'd really like to nurse in bed at night. Actually, adding ANY other position would be nice.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: How do you nurse lying down?

    You can try folding a receiving blanket and put it under him like you would do with a pillow, once he star growing more it will become easier. Keep practicing, it might take you a bit to get the hang of it.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: How do you nurse lying down?

    Pillows, Pillows, Pillows. Either using a boppy or down pillows I always position him so he's facing me and he's on a pillow,(down pillows help keep him in place) but the one i'm using is higher up so I'm comfortable while we're doing it but the baby is "level" with me. It does take some practice and you have to be able to see your LO over a mountain of boob to feel comfortable. Experimant with pillows. Also I don't know if you have a lactation consultant available to you but if you do they can usually help.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: How do you nurse lying down?

    I've heard good things about the nursing nest ...

    Nursing Nest

    Side lying nursing in bed at night is heaven! I don't know how I survived nights with my all night nurser before using that position. Good luck!

    Mama to Adeline Brett, breastfed for 4.5 years (12/14/05) and little Eliza June, new tiny sprite in my arms and still learning the ropes (7/18/10)

    Family Blog • If I'm here I'm nursing and typing one handed ... forgive the typos!
    And I'm not a newbie at all ... I'm trying to get my old user ID working from back in the day ... paint-the-moon

  5. #5
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    Default Re: How do you nurse lying down?

    It took me a while to figure this one out, too.

    Some things I did:

    Step one: I sent my husband out to get a ton of cheap pillows and pillowcases (for nursing in general, not just side-lying).

    I sometimes nursed sitting up in bed with pillows underneath my arms so I could just doze off.

    For side-lying, I held DS in the crook of my arm and then used that to maneuver him around. The tricky thing about the crook-in-the-arm business is that you want to make sure your baby's head, neck and body are in a straight line (that his neck isn't all scrunched up on top of your arm). As a result, the baby will be at an angle. I remember thinking that my baby wasn't as close to my body as I expected him to be in that position. I had a pillow between my legs and also wedged under my back, behind me, so I could lean against that. I found the description in the Dr. Sears Baby Book very helpful.
    http://www.askdrsears.com/html/2/T021200.asp


    If you have a local LLL meeting coming up, someone can demonstrate for you. I have fond memories of seeing our leader demonstrate it on the floor.

    Good luck, and hang in there. The thing I always told myself when I was having problems figuring out sidelying was, "Oh well. I guess I have lots of opportunities to practice" LOL.

    Oh, and it's not a silly question! It took a lot of Moms and babies I know a while to figure this one out. You also want to be sure not to sacrifice the quality of the latch for the convenience of the position.
    Last edited by hilde; July 15th, 2006 at 09:44 PM.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: How do you nurse lying down?

    Thanks -- I guess we just need to keep at it. I'll try again tomorrow (that seems to be a mantra these days).

    Becky

  7. #7
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    Default Re: How do you nurse lying down?

    And if tomorrow your not comfortable try again next week. Often this doesn't become something your comfortable with until your baby has neck control and your completely comfortable in your breastfeeding relationship. I don't thinkwe got it good until after the 5 week point!

  8. #8

    Default Re: How do you nurse lying down?

    Don't give up, itis alifesaver once you figure it out. like nursing, in general, there will come an aha! moment where it just works. I had a really hard time figuring it out and for a while I had mastered this weird way of nursing in bed. I had dd lay/lie (I hate that! I never get it right! and I am a grammar snob) diagonally across me with her head turned to the side, kind of in my arm pit. Since my boob (bless its heart) naturally also flops to the side when I lie on my back it was right where she needed it!

    All of this to say, keep trying, I made some pretty crazy arrangements work out in an attempt to not get out of our bed in the beginning. Good luck!
    Mother to Emily June, b. Sept 18, 2005 and Lucy Quinn, b. 1/20/2012

    “Buy the ticket, take the ride."
    Hunter S. Thompson

    Excitement on the Side: Who doesn't love a confident woman with long boobs...

  9. #9
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    Default Re: How do you nurse lying down?

    Quote Originally Posted by DJ's Mom
    Often this doesn't become something your comfortable with until your baby has neck control and your completely comfortable in your breastfeeding relationship. I don't thinkwe got it good until after the 5 week point!
    Oh -- this makes sooo much sense. I keep reading that this is great in the "early weeks," which I think I have been taking to mean the "first weeks." We'll definitely keep at it...I think we'll all get a lot more sleep when we get it right!

    Thanks.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: How do you nurse lying down?

    Quote Originally Posted by becktuck
    We'll definitely keep at it...I think we'll all get a lot more sleep when we get it right!
    It is a lifesaver as a PP said. It does get much easier as your babe gets older. Both baby and I barely have to wake up to nurse now at night. In fact, she'll just open her mouth and reach out for me when she's hungry or needs comfort. In fact, I've woken up and looked down to see Addie’s bright, wide eyes staring up at me as she helped herself to breakfast (yes, I usually leave the breast nearest her out and available to her! ). There she was nursing, looking up at me and when she saw me waken, she flashed me a huge smile while she continued to nurse.

    Mama to Adeline Brett, breastfed for 4.5 years (12/14/05) and little Eliza June, new tiny sprite in my arms and still learning the ropes (7/18/10)

    Family Blog • If I'm here I'm nursing and typing one handed ... forgive the typos!
    And I'm not a newbie at all ... I'm trying to get my old user ID working from back in the day ... paint-the-moon

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