Breast Compression is a great technique to increase the flow of breast milk when feeding. If your baby is not feeding on its own, then using this technique can help encourage your baby to receive milk.
What is breast compressions useful for?
- Babies who are struggling to gain weight
- Colic in the baby – this is an attack of crying resulting from abdominal pain
- Frequent feedings or long feedings
- Sore nipples for mum
- Recurrent blocked ducts and or mastitis
- Encouraging a baby who falls asleep to continue drinking
- A “lazy” baby who seems to want to pacify rather than feed
How do I do breast compression?
- Breastfeed your baby as you normally would and get a deep latch and good position
- As you are breastfeeding watch for when your baby stops sucking. You can tell they have when they stop sucking actively and the jaw movement slows down.
- Using your hand, cup and squeeze the breast between your thumb and fingers. Your thumb should be on top of the breast and your other fingers below it. Another method is to press the breast against the chest wall and have their fingers on top of the breast and the thumb below.
- Make sure your hands aren’t too close to the nipple as you don’t want to disrupt the baby as they feed.
- Don’t press too hard that it becomes painful.
- Milk should start to flow, and your baby will continue feeding. Maintain this technique and release the pressure as your baby pauses and feeds.
- Continue to repeat the compressions until your baby finishes feeding.
- Ensure you are alternating breasts.