Do you ever wear your baby around the house, or even out in public and think to yourself, I could be breastfeeding right now? Or it would be so much easier if I could just use my baby sling or wrap while I breastfeed. Well, you can! It might take a bit of creativity and some trial and error, but you can most definitely breastfeed while baby-wearing. In this blog we’re going to take a look at some different ways that you can multitask.
Ways to Breastfeed While Baby-wearing
If your baby carrier, sling or wrap holds your little one in an upright position, you can breastfeed while you carry them. Your clothing and access is the most difficult part of this process. If you know you want to breastfeed while they are being carried, choose clothing that works with you. Shirts that you need to pull up from your waist will be hard as the straps of the carrier or wrap will likely try to hold the clothing in place. Nursing specific clothing often pulls apart, unzips or snaps to prove easy access. These make good options.
Tip: You might need to loosen shoulder and/or waist straps to carry the baby a little bit lower.
Cross Cradle Position
Some baby carrying slings and wraps hold your child in more of a cross cradle position. Since your child is already in a nursing position, this is pretty intuitive. The same tips from the koala position apply. Wear breastfeeding specific clothing to make feeding your baby easier. It also makes it a bit more discrete.
You can also use a child carrier in the cross cradle position. By leaving the waist strap tight, and loosening the shoulder straps, you can lay your baby across the carrier rather than having their legs straddle you. Just be sure to keep at least one arm on your baby to make sure that they are still secure and won’t slip.
Tip: This is a great way to nurse and pump at the same time. Because your baby’s head is on one side of your body, you can use a single pump on the other side to make the most of this time and help manage your supply.
Ways to Pump While Baby-wearing
In a recent post, we shared ways to help encourage your let down reflex to happen in order to get more out of your pump session. One of these tips was physical contact and physical smell. When you are wearing your baby in a carrier or sling, not only are they snuggled against you, but their head is right below your nose. You are in a prime position (or rather they are) for a good pumping session.
If you have a wearable pump try pumping while you baby-wear. These fit nicely in your bra and are generally quiet enough that they won’t bother your baby too much. You might even get a contact nap out this time as well! You might need to loosen your carrier a bit to make up for the additional space the pumps take up.
Tip: Play some music or watch your current favorite show for even more relaxation and better let downs!
Use Your Double Pump for a Solo Sesh
If you have a double electric pump you aren’t totally out of luck. Higher up in this post we mentioned that you could pump on the side that you are not nursing. You could use a manual pump, but double electric pumps have the capability to pump on just one side. You might need to adjust your tubing or settings a bit but this should be fairly easy to do.
Tip: This might take a bit of adjusting to make sure there is room for your flange and your baby to be comfortable. Try to aim for a time when your baby isn’t cranky or fussy to make getting your setup stress free and avoid poor alignment.