Signs of a good latch-on

A good latch-on is the key to a good feeding. Regardless of the position you hold your baby, the latch-on remains the same.

The baby has a deep latch with an angle where the lips meet the breast of at least 140o Both upper and lower lips are flanged (rolled out) All or most of your areola is in the baby’s mouth (at least 1” from the base of the nipple). More from the bottom of the areola than the top (asymmetrical latch-on).

You are comfortable through the feeding. There may be some “latch-on” pain that subsides quickly. There is movement in the baby’s temples with sucking and the jaw moves up and down an inch or more. There is slight movement of your breast near the baby’s lips.

Signs of a Good Feeding

Hearing swallowing at least every third suck once the milk comes-in.

Seeing milk in the baby’s mouth Consistent sucking with only brief pauses

The breasts are softer after feedings

Appropriate output for age.
(1 wet diaper on day 1, 2 wet diapers on day 2, 3 wet diapers on day 3, 6 wet diapers on day 4 and on, and several stools each day)

Feeling strong, deep, “pulling”, sucking, no sharp pain Leaking from the other breast or feeling of a “letdown” reflex or noticing a change in the baby’s sucking rhythm from faster to slower

Vigorous sucking on the breast

Your baby nurses 8 or more times per day (24 hour day).

Your baby latches-on easily with minimal attempts and stays latched-on.

Minimal weight loss during the first few days (<10% of birth weight) and return to birth weight by 2 weeks

Lactation Education Resources 2016. Worksite Perinatal Consultants. This handout may be freely duplicated. Please be aware that the information provided is intended solely for general educational and informational purposes only. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your healthcare provider for any questions you may have regarding your or your infant’s medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have received in this information.


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