Eine Mutter stillt ihr Baby. Der Blick auf das Baby fällt über die Schulter der Mutter.

Useful tips for breastfeeding

A good start for mother and child

After being born, every new-born needs a different amount of time to want to suckle. Your baby loves the scent of your skin and will start searching for your nipple. Take your time to enjoy this first encounter. Your delivery nurse will help you breastfeed for the first time. Nursing is very important to bond and start the milk-flow.


Grafik eines stillenden Babys, welches die Brustwarze der Mutter mit den Lippen überstülpt.

Correct latching

You can recognize if your baby is hungry because it starts licking its lips and looking for your breasts. Some babies also touch their mouths or champ. When you notice these signs you still have enough time to prepare to breastfeed in peace. However, screaming is a late sign of hunger.

Correct latching is important: 

  • to start the milk-flow
  • to empty your breasts correctly
  • to prevent sore nipples


1. Find a comfortable position

No matter what position you choose to nurse in: Create a comfortable nursing area to breastfeed your baby. It is important to have a peaceful environment to nurse in. Set aside a drink for yourself. Welcome your child and announce that you will start the feeding now. Then you can get yourself focused on the job. 

2. Position your child

Place your child with its tummy facing yours. The upper lip should be at the same level as your nipple. The baby's chin and nose are touching your breast. Make sure your baby's body is in a straight line. You can use pillows or cushions as an aid. You should also sit or lie in a straight position to avoid sore muscles. Your baby will "hug" your breast in any feeding position. That means one arm will be on the left side and the other on the right side of your breast.

3. Latching

Bring your child's head to your breast and not your breast to the child. Stimulate the child's mouth and cheeks so it will open up its mouth wide enough to get your whole nipple and areola in its mouth. Give your baby enough time to react to the stimulation. While suckling the child's lips - especially the bottom one - need to be curved outwards.  

If you feel you need to hold your breast for your child, we recommend the so-called "c-grasp": Your fingers lie flat below the areola and beneath your breast. Your thumb is gently placed above your nipple without squeezing it. 

While suckling, the movements of your baby's tongue and jaw are comparable to the milking procedure. The milk gets emptied out of the mammary ducts. If your child's checks look like it is sucking on a straw, you need to restart the process (help your child if you like). 

You can feel when the milk-flow starts. Some women describe a sense of tingling or twinging. 

It is normal for your baby to take a few breaks during feeding. If your baby falls asleep to quickly, you can help it start suckling again by tenderly stroking its hands.

Let your child drink for as long as it likes. You can feel whether it is drinking properly or only suckling. Though suckling is perfectly normal at the end of nursing.

4. After nursing

When you want to detach your child from your breast, you can end the vacuum of the mouth by putting a finger in the corner of the kid's mouth. Just pulling the baby off your breast can be painful. By carefully pushing the baby's jaw down, you can stop the suction. 

After breastfeeding you can hold your child with its body in a slightly upright position. That way it can burp out the air it has swallowed and fall asleep peacefully. You do not need to hold the baby up and pat its back. At the beginning, new-borns tend to fall asleep while suckling.

5. Keeping warm

Grafik eines Vaters, der sein Neugeborenes auf der nackten Brust wärmt.

New-born cannot regulate their body temperature on their own. They need to be kept warm. Direct skin contact strengthens the connection to your new family member. Place your baby on the naked chest of the mother, father or sibling and cover both up.

When your baby is lying on its own, it needs a hat and a sleeping bag during the first days.

Nursing positions

Lying down

Eine Mutter stillt ihr Baby im seitlichen Liegen.

Lie down comfortably on your side. Relax with your head on a pillow. Find something to lean your back against (e.g. a rolled up blanket). Your baby is also lying down, facing you with its top lip at the same height as your nipple. Your baby’s ear and hip are in one line. You can also support your baby’s back with a cushion or a blanket.

This position is recommended:

  • to be easy on your pelvic base and perineum
  • to get you and your baby used to breastfeeding
  • at night
  • if your cut and stitches are still painful
  • when your baby is restless
  • when your milk has collected in the lower segment of your breasts

Cradle position

Eine Mutter sitzt und stillt ihr Baby im Wiegegriff.

Sit down comfortably and lean back. Place a blanket or a pillow on your lap to get your baby elevated (top lip is level with your nipple). The blanket or pillow supports some of your child’s weight. Your baby is facing you with its tummy against yours. Its head is lying in the crook of your arm while your forearm is supporting the baby’s back.

Foodball hold

Eine Mutter stillt ihr Baby im Rückengriff.

For the foodball hold your baby’s tummy is lying against your side. One cushion is placed on your lap, the other under the arm holding the baby. Your child is facing you with its top lip at the same height as your nipple. Your hand and forearm can support the baby’s back. Make sure to be just as relaxed as when you breastfeed in the cradle position.  

This position is recommended:

  • after a Caesarean section because the baby does not push on the cut
  • if your breasts are large
  • with twins

Leaning back

Eine Mutter stillt ihr Baby in der "Hoppa-Reiter" Position. Sie liegt etwas aufgerichtet auf dem Rücken. Das Baby sitzt neben ihr und wird gestützt.

Lean back while supporting your back. Lay your baby on your tummy or slightly to your side. The more upright you sit, the more support your baby needs. New-born cannot sit by themselves yet.

This position is recommended:

  • if you had a Caesarean
  • if your baby has problems attaching to your nipple
  • if your milk-flow is strong
  • if your breasts are engorged
  • if you have large breasts