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Neck pain from breastfeeding

Updated on June 24, 2017

Preventing neck pain during breast-feeding

Neck pain during breast-feeding is often said to be caused by poor posture during breast-feeding. Be sure to support your back. Sit up straight in a comfortable chair with your back leaning against pillows or the back of the chair to help prevent neck pain during breast-feeding.

Have your baby lying on a pillow such as the "Boppy" which is advertised widely or an ordinary bed pillow. The use of an ergonomic foot stool will also elevate your lap and bring your baby closer to you when you are breast-feeding. While seated in a comfortable armchair, put your feet up on the footstool directly in front of you, legs bent at the knee. These types of stools are available at retailers such as Babies-R-Us. You should never have to lean forward to breast-feed.


The above mentioned advice applies especially to the traditional position for breast-feeding but also remember that there are various positions you can try. Many women do middle of the night feedings when they are lying in bed or propped up against many pillows in bed. Such positions also help moms who are spending more time in bed perhaps because they are recovering from c-sections but they still choose to breast-feed.

If you do experience neck pain while breast-feeding, you might want to try a new position such as lying down but be sure to pay attention to your posture if you continue to use a chair.

To relieve the neck pain that might have already occurred and prevent it from getting worse, you can apply warm compresses to your neck. Using a towel that has been soaked in warm water and wrung out might be helpful for you. Try some neck exercises such as raising and bowing your head and turning your head from side to side. A gentle neck massage can also help to alleviate the pain.


Perhaps one of the most helpful things for relieving neck pain is to stop sleeping with a pillow. Whether you typically sleep with your head on one or two pillows, remove the pillows and have your head resting on just the fitted sheet of the mattress or mattress pad. Your head will be at the same level as the rest of your body and you might experience a notable improvement in the neck pain from just one night of sleeping without the pillows(s).


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    • Journey * profile image

      Nyesha Pagnou MPH 6 years ago from USA

      Thank you Hello, hello!

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

      A very good pont to raise. Well done.