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Do You Know about the Breast Crawl?

Posted on January 25th, 2013 by | 12 views
By Megumi Burr, Compassion Tree Mama Care Services
http://megumiburr.com/mama-care

Do you know that a newborn instinctively knows how to find the breast and start breastfeeding? Placed skin-to-skin on mama's belly or chest immediately after birth, babies can find their own way to the breast and start suckling.

The Breast Crawl, also known as self-attachment or baby-led breastfeeding, is important to baby's brain and emotional development, and the crawl stimulates mama's contractions to deliver the placenta, and reduces uterine bleeding.

Primed by a special state of alertness, the scent of amniotic fluid on his or her hands (which is matched by the smell of mom's nipples), and vision zeroing in on the dark areola, an uninterrupted newborn can find the breast and self-attach within its first hour.

Labor medications, separating baby from mom, and immediately washing baby have been demonstrated as interfering with newborns' ability to complete the Breast Crawl. Mamas wishing to set baby up for a successful Breast Crawl can specify their desires in their birth plan, and talk with their care provider ahead of time.

If baby didn't make the Crawl at birth, you two can recreate the experience later. Babies maintain this instinctual capacity well into babyhood.

Here are some Breast Crawl resources for you to explore:

Enjoy!

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