Skip to content
The dos and don'ts of newborn attachment

The dos and don'ts of newborn attachment


Breastfeeding plays a crucial and beautiful role in nurturing a newborn, supporting not just their physical well-being but also nurturing a profound emotional bond between parent and baby. Establishing a proper latch is crucial for successful breastfeeding and building a strong bond. Understanding the do’s and don'ts of attaching a newborn to the breast can significantly enhance the breastfeeding experience.

What are some tips for successful breastfeeding?

 Dos for successful breastfeeding:

  1. Positioning: Ensure a comfortable and relaxed position for both you and your baby. Use pillows or supports to help find a comfortable posture that allows the baby to reach the breast easily.
  2. Hold the Baby Close: Keep the baby close to your body (tummy-to-tummy) while breastfeeding. This proximity helps the baby feel secure and facilitates a proper latch.
  3. Support the Baby's Neck and Back: Provide support for the baby's neck and back. Gently guide their body to the breast with your hand, allowing them to tilt their head back to latch on more effectively.
  4. Wait for a Wide Mouth: Wait for the baby to open their mouth wide before guiding the breast for latching. This ensures a deeper latch and reduces discomfort for both you and the baby.
  5. Aim the Nipple Towards the Roof of the Mouth: When latching, aim the nipple towards the roof of the baby's mouth. This positioning helps the baby get a good mouthful of breast tissue for effective feeding.
  6. Pay Attention to Sucking Patterns: Observe the baby's sucking patterns. Look for rhythmic sucks and swallows, indicating proper milk transfer.
  7. Calm Your Baby: If your baby is crying or showing resistance to latching, it's advisable to pause and soothe them. Engaging in skin-to-skin contact serves as an excellent method to comfort the baby while also promoting natural feeding instincts.
  8. Wake Baby for Feeds: Pediatricians usually advise waking a baby for feeds if they haven't fed for an extended period, but individual circumstances may vary based on the baby's health and weight gain. Always consult a healthcare provider for personalised guidance regarding your baby's feeding schedule.
  9. Seek Help When Needed: Don't hesitate to seek help from a lactation consultant or healthcare professional if you're experiencing difficulties with latching. They can offer guidance and support tailored to your situation.

What shouldn’t you do during a breastfeed?

Don’ts for successful breastfeeding:

  1. Avoid Forcing the Baby's Head: Refrain from forcing the baby's head onto the breast. Allow them to instinctively seek the breast, promoting a deeper more natural, and comfortable latch.
  2. Don't Pull the Baby Away: Avoid pulling the baby away if the latch doesn’t feel right. Instead, gently insert a finger into the corner of their mouth to break the latch and try again.
  3. Avoid Missing Feeds: Newborns have small stomachs and high metabolic rates. Regular feeding, typically every 2-3 hours, is essential to provide them with the necessary nutrients for growth and development. Frequent nursing sessions help establish and maintain a robust milk supply, ensuring an adequate amount of breast milk for the baby's needs.
  4. Don't Get Discouraged by Initial Challenges: Don't be discouraged by initial challenges. Latching may take time to perfect, and it's normal to face some difficulties at the beginning.
  5. Avoid Nipple Pain: If you're experiencing pain during breastfeeding, don't ignore it. Pain can be a sign of an improper latch, and addressing it promptly is crucial for a successful breastfeeding experience.
  6. Don't Rush the Process: Avoid rushing the baby to latch. Take your time, stay calm, and be patient during the process, allowing both you and the baby to adjust comfortably.
  7. Don't Compare Your Journey: Refrain from comparing your breastfeeding journey to others. Each experience is unique, and what works for one might not necessarily work for another.
  8. Don't Hesitate to Change Positions: If a certain position isn’t working, don't hesitate to try different breastfeeding positions until you find what works best for you and your baby.

Perfecting the skill of attaching a newborn to the breast demands patience, practice, and adaptability. Following these guidelines while avoiding common pitfalls helps caregivers establish a supportive and comforting environment for successful breastfeeding. If you face any difficulties with attaching your newborn during breastfeeding, don't delay in seeking assistance from a lactation consultant.


Berens, P., Eglash, A., Malloy, M., & Steube, A. (n.d.). ABM Clinical Protocol #26: Persistent pain with breastfeeding. Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine.

Degefa, N., Tariku, B., Bancha, T., Amana, G., Hajo, A., Kusse, Y., Zerihun, E., & Aschalew, Z. (2019, April 7). Breast feeding practice: Positioning and attachment during breast feeding among lactating mothers visiting health facility in Areka Town, southern Ethiopia. International journal of pediatrics.

Parashar, M., Singh, S., Kishore, J., & Patavegar, B. N. (n.d.). Breastfeeding attachment and positioning technique ... - sage journals. Sage Journals.


Svensson, K. E., Velandia, M. I., Matthiesen, A.-S. T., Welles-Nyström, B. L., & Widström, A.-M. E. (2013, March 11). Effects of mother-infant skin-to-skin contact on severe latch-on problems in older infants: A randomized trial - international breastfeeding journal. BioMed Central.

    Leave your thought here

    Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.

    Related Posts

    Breast preference
    April 07, 2024
    Breast preference

    The recommendation by the World Health Organisation (WHO) is that infants receive only breastmilk in the first six months...

    Read More
    Mastering breastfeeding: Understanding latch and attachment
    April 03, 2024
    Mastering breastfeeding: Understanding latch and attachment

    Breastfeeding is a beautiful and essential part of nurturing your newborn, providing them with vital nutrients, and fostering...

    Read More
    Drawer Title
    Similar Products