Small breasts

How do I breastfeed with small breasts?

Small breasts are normal, but they usually mean there is more distance between the mother’s lap and the breasts. Mothers will have to raise the baby, possibly with a pillow, so the mouth is right in front of the nipple. Otherwise, the baby may pull down on the nipple, causing nipple pain or damage or latching problems. Mothers may find their back is sore from leaning forward or they are tired from raising their heels to raise the lap. A very limited number of mothers do not have enough milk tissue and will have extremely small breasts.

 

A) Describing small breasts

Small breasts are usually normal and rarely a sign that mothers will not have enough milk for their baby. Rather the breasts just have less fatty tissue than some other mothers. Mothers with smaller breasts generally can feel when their milk comes in and when the breasts are fuller or emptier.

A very limited number of mothers do not have enough milk tissue and will have extremely small breasts.

B) Positioning the baby at the breast

Mothers with small breasts may have positioning challenges and will need to make certain that their chosen breastfeeding hold works for both mother and baby.

Smaller breasts usually mean there is more distance from the lap to the breast and nipple.
 
If mothers do not raise the baby so the mouth is right in front of the nipple, the baby may pull down on the nipple, leaving the top part of the nipple tender or damaged.
 
Mothers may find that their back is sore from bending forward to allow the baby to reach the nipple. They may raise their heels and stay on their toes in order to raise the lap. This is very tiring.
 
Mothers who put their baby on a breastfeeding pillow, need to make sure the baby’s mouth is right in front of the nipple both before latching the baby and once the baby lets go of the breast after feeding. The former prevents problems and the latter confirms that the baby is at the correct height.
 
Mothers with smaller breasts and wishing to use the under-arm hold generally need a very thick pillow for the baby to lie on.