27 June 2013

How can an osteopath help with breastfeeding?

If your baby is struggling to breastfeed there is plenty of information and support out there to help you both. You can seek advice online or from breastfeeding groups, lactation consultants, tongue tie specialists and your midwife. Not to mention tips from friends and family! But did you know that these specialists are increasingly recognising the role that cranial osteopaths can play to help your baby feed?

At an appointment your osteopath will check the muscles, ligaments and joints that are involved in feeding. For example osteopaths check to see if your baby can turn their head comfortably to feed from each breast. Your osteopath will look at the jaw movement to check that they can open their mouth wide enough to feed. He or she will also check tongue movement for signs of tongue tie or weak suck. Osteopaths can also give advice on feeding and winding techniques specific to you and your baby.

Cranial osteopathy is a gentle treatment which may improve the way your baby feeds. Here are some signs to look out for which might make you see an osteopath. Does your baby:

  • Prefer feeding from one breast more than the other?
  • Struggle to get enough nipple in their mouth?
  • Make a clicking noise or break their seal when feeding?
  • Come on and off the breast at every feed?
  • Seem uncomfortable during feeds?

Laura Tilson BA(Hons) M.Ost DPO runs a children's clinic at The Putney Clinic on Thursday mornings. Please call 020 8789 3881 or email the Clinic at info@putneyclinic.co.uk for more information.

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