Breastfeeding Help – Latch
The first step to a proper latch on is getting baby to open WIDE! Brush baby’s upper lip with your nipple to encourage him to open wide, as if yawning.
Once baby’s mouth is open wide, quickly pull him onto the breast by pulling the baby toward you with the arm that is holding him. Make sure you move the baby towards you, and not move yourself towards the baby.
The baby’s gums should completely bypass the nipple and cover approximately one inch of the areola behind the nipple. Make sure the baby’s lips are not inverted. Some baby’s will tighten or purse their lips, especially the lower one. If the lower lip is inverted (turned in), try simply pressing down on baby’s chin to avoid an inwardly turned lip.
Correct latch-on. Note how the baby’s lips are correctly everted, and the mouth is open wide. Also notice how much breast tissue has been taken in, almost the entire areola is in the baby’s mouth.
If your baby is latched on and sucking correctly, you should not feel any pain. If you feel pain, or the baby does not seem to be sucking correctly, stop and start over again. Break the suction by putting your finger in the side of the baby’s mouth between the gums. DO NOT let the baby continue to feed incorrectly, as you can develop painful and damaged nipples, and the baby may not be able to get enough milk.