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What is the best way to feed baby while lying on the bed?

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Pediatrician, Infectious Diseases
Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 1528 Questions
I was doing lunch time discussion with one of my friend on kids. Both my friend and I have a baby of age less than a month(precisely about 12 days as of today for my baby). The fundamental question/argument what we had was on feeding the baby while lying on the bed vs. feeding the baby while sitting. Please help me understand what is the best practice to feed the babies as the argument went on with a conclusion that both of us don't know precisely which is the best practice/approach.
Posted Thu, 30 Aug 2012 in Child Health
Answered by Dr. Hema Yadav 1 hour later
Thanks for posting your query.
There are four to five recommended breast feeding positions all of which are good in their own way and each has it's benefits and disadvantages.There is no single best position as each mother & baby might differ in their comfortable positions.
Yes the sitting or cradle hold position is the commonest position during the newborn period but even the lying down position is a good alternative especially during night feeds and in mothers who had a caesarean section .If adequate support is used ( pillows etc) both can be equally comfortable to mother as well as baby.
If you are arguing regarding the best position for baby , that too has an equivocal answer. For a baby the most important part is proper latching to the breast of a comfortable mother . In both cradle hold and lying position proper latching can be easily achieved by the baby and milk supply will be the same .
In both cases burping the baby is important after feeding from one breast as if not done adequately it may cause reflux or colic.
In both positions it's important to keep one hand to support the baby's head to prevent inadvertant aspiration.This is especially important in lying down position during night feeds where care should be taken by mothers not to inadvertently smother the infant.

As pediatricians we do offer a choice to the mother and sometimes they may opt for both the positions using cradle hold for daytime feeding and lying down for night feeds. So the answer to your query would be that though the cradle hold position is the most commonly practiced , there is no best position recommended for all and lying down position if practiced appropriately is as good as the sitting one .Each has it's advantages and disadvantages equally .

Hope I have answered your query.
I'll be available for any follow up queries.

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