Dangle feeding is one of the lesser-known breastfeeding positions because it’s primarily used if you have a clogged duct or mastitis. Both are terrible in their own way, but using this breastfeeding position can help remove the clog and get you on the road to recovery.
After breastfeeding four kids, I can tell you that I’ve had to dangle feed more times than I liked. I’m prone to clogged ducts, and this position, combined with the help of gravity, does work to remove the clog. A clog is also what starts mastitis, which is an infection in your breast.
Here is what you need to know to dangle feed properly.
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How Dangle Feeding Works
The concept of this position is quite easy.
Put your baby on a surface, such as your couch or bed, on his back. Crouch over top of your baby on all fours and let your breast out of your bra. Doing so dangles your breast and nipple in front of your baby. Let your baby latch onto your nipple as it dangles above him.
That’s all there is in this position! 😀
Some women can dangle feed while sitting, kneeling over their baby on a bed, or lying down but propped up on their arms. Use as many cushions and pillows as necessary to support yourself. If you can find a comfortable way to do this position, you can use it as many times as needed to get rid of the clogged duct or mastitis.
Why Does This Position Work Well
Has your baby ever latched onto your skin? If so, you know your baby’s latch is the most powerful vacuum force you’ve ever felt. Nothing matches the strength of your baby’s latch.
When you combine the force of your baby’s latch and gravity, it creates a force that brings down the milk. It makes it easier for your baby to drain your breast, and undrained breasts are a cause of clogged ducts. Some women use it as a preventative measure to stop the formation of clogs or blockages.
The angle is different than any other position you would try. Sometimes, all you need is a way to get your milk to move more freely.
When Should I Try This Position?
In most cases, there is no need to use dangle feeding throughout your regular day. It’s not the most convenient or comfortable position to use for long periods.
While there is no scientific evidence that dangle feeding does help unplug ducts, millions of mothers will tell you that it does work. The theory is that the gravity from dangling over your baby helps encourage the clog to come out.
So, I suggest you only use this position if you feel a clog developing. You also could try using it if your baby has problems draining your breast entirely.
It Won’t Fully Treat Mastitis or a Clogged Duct
It’s important to remember that while this position can help, it won’t take away a clogged duct by itself. Mastitis requires antibiotics, so you do need to visit the doctor. An infection in your breast is nothing to mess around with, so use this position, but get medication to support your recovery.
Keep this breastfeeding position in the back of your mind in case you face a clogged duct. Most breastfeeding mothers will have a clog at least once while nursing, and using this position early can help stop the problem before it becomes worse.