Latching Tips


My tips for a great latch:

Here are my favorite latching videos:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=deKN3wJ17Mk
This one is cool because it shows how the nipple is positioned in baby’s mouth.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Hdhiii573A&t=20s

Flipple technique for deep latch:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CpPIO8DB6GY

Here are my tips for latching:
1) be skin to skin with baby. Undress him down to the diaper and have your skin touching him.
2) Turn his body so that his neck, back and legs are in one line.  You don’t want him lying on his back and turning his head to the side to feed.
3) Nipple to nose.  You actually want his nose lined up with your nipple so that he has to tip his head back and then open his lower jaw to latch. This allows your nipple to slide along the roof of his mouth, in the proper position.
4) Support him under the side of his head by his ear, or under his neck. Do not touch the back of his head because it can cause a newborn to reflexively arch back, away from the nipple.
5) Wait till he opens a little then gently push down on his chin with your finger or your breast itself (while holding your breast with finger and thumb) to get him to open really wide (see flipple video above). 
6) Then let him arch forwards and latch on.
7) Check that his upper lip and lower lip are flanged out like a fish mouth. If not, gently flip them with your finger. 
8) Look at the angle of the corner of his lips. Should be at least 90 degrees (corner of a square) but ideally closer to 120 degrees. If not then try to lever more breast tissue into the lower jaw.  If he doesn’t get deep enough then take him off and try again. 
I also think it’s important to know the difference between comfort sucking and nutritive sucking.  Comfort sucking is fast, little jaw movements.  Very little milk is transferred.  Nutritive sucking is large jaw movements, at a slower rate, with a pause every 1-2 sucks for a swallow (sometimes you can see a ripple in the throat as they swallow).  Your job is to teach baby to feed efficiently.  As soon as the nutritive sucking rhythm slows down, you need to stimulate him by touching under his chin, top of his head, along his back, blow on his face, talk to him. If after 30 seconds he is not back in a productive sucking pattern, take him off, change his diaper, burp him, switch breasts.  Don’t let him learn to just feed for a minute then fall asleep or your feeding sessions will take hours each!
Non-nutritive (pacifying, not transferring milk) sucking:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ugw5brAshi0
Nutritive (Good milk transfer) sucking:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HvYF7z7Rfiw