If you’re part of my Instagram community, you probably already know that we’ve been dealing with our first baby cold. My poor baby has been battling a fever, runny nose, and congestion. To feel better, he wants extra snuggles, more bathtime fun, and a whole lot of comfort nursing. All of this extra time breastfeeding makes me so glad I set up the perfect nursing station for breastfeeding!
As a new mom, it completely surprised me just how much time I spent breastfeeding.
Between cluster feeding, comfort nursing, and learning to nurse more efficiently, we literally spent hours breastfeeding each day. At first, we struggled to start nursing successfully, so our early nursing sessions were fairly frustrating. Because of this, I was incredibly thankful that I created the perfect nursing station to maximize our comfort and minimize additional stress.
I highly recommend that all breastfeeding moms put together a nursing station. You’ll be amazed at how much your nursing station can improve your breastfeeding experience! Without my comfortable little sanctuary, I don’t know if I would have made it through the tough days!
Top 10 Recommendations to Create Your Perfect Nursing Station:
Keep reading to learn the top 10 things I recommend adding to your nursing station. Prepare your station today to guarantee that breastfeeding becomes easier and much more comfortable for you!
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1 – A Comfortable Chair
I firmly believe that a comfortable chair is THE most important part of a great nursing station. I’ve nursed in several locations in our house, experimented with chairs when visiting family, and breastfed in tons of places once I finally started to feel comfortable nursing in public. From all of this, I learned that the right chair makes all of the difference.
With the right chair, I feel comfortable and enjoy breastfeeding. But when using the wrong chair, I’m constantly readjusting and count every second until I’m done nursing.
Here are the qualities I look for in my perfect nursing chair:
A Wide Seat:
I love the wide chair in my nursing station. I can sit however I want to feel the most comfortable: feet on the floor, crossed legs, sitting in the middle or off to one side, with a nursing pillow or without, etc.
A wide seat gives me all of these options. It also gives me enough room to switch up breastfeeding positions and always have enough room for me and my baby.
A Supportive Back:
Breastfeeding can be really hard on your back if you don’t focus on good posture and nursing in the correct positions. Making sure your nursing station has a chair with a supportive back makes a huge difference in avoiding back pain.
I prefer chairs with tall, supportive backs and chairs that aren’t too deep. Otherwise, I feel a little stuck in them and can’t get up as easily as I want. I also love recliners for my nursing station so I can slightly adjust the angle to be as comfortable as possible each time.
I wouldn’t have survived
Pro Tip: One way to avoid acid reflux is to always ensure that your baby’s head is higher than her stomach when she eats. Read this post to learn more about ways to get rid of baby reflux.
I also look for chairs with footrests when putting together the perfect nursing station. I like being able to elevate my feet when I want to. What works best for me is a recliner with a pullout footrest, a little footrest I can put in front of us, or a few pillows to throw on the floor under my feet.
2 – A Nursing Pillow
Once I find the perfect chair, it’s time to add things that make me more comfortable while breastfeeding. For me, adding a nursing pillow is the ultimate way to make my nursing station much more comfortable.
With my nursing pillow, I don’t have to constantly re-adjust my baby or strain my arms to hold him in the perfect position. Because it makes things so much easier, my nursing station always has a pillow tucked next to my chair.
My nursing pillow preferences have changed a little as my baby grows.
I loved the MyBrestFriend Pillow when my baby was a newborn. He was so tiny and I constantly struggled to get him pulled close enough to my body to nurse. But this pillow added the perfect amount of support.
My favorite feature is that it strapped behind my body so I could keep it super tight. This ensured that the pillow didn’t move around as we switched nursing positions, stopped to burp, or even stood up for a couple of minutes.
Once he got a little older, we fell in
I love that it is so easy to put on and take off, even with one hand. It also
Now that he’s even bigger, we often just use a regular pillow to prop him up a little. He lays across my lap and can hold himself up without needing a nursing pillow. But tossing a regular pillow under my arm keeps his head propped up to make sure we avoid stomach aches.
3 – A Blanket
The next way that I make my nursing station as comfortable as possible is by adding a blanket. Although you don’t need a blanket to breastfeed, snuggling up in a warm blanket makes me feel so much more comfortable. Instead of complaining about how much time we’re spending cluster feeding or comfort nursing, I snuggle up and enjoy the bonding time with my baby.
I have two different blankets folded up the the bottom section of my nursing station.
One is a thick, heavy blanket I use when I really want to feel cozy. This one is perfect for chilly days or days when I wear a nursing bra instead of a nursing tank top. I get all snug and warm and then nurse my baby on top of this blanket.
I also always keep a soft, thin blanket in my nursing station. This is my favorite when I want to snuggle under the blanket with my baby too because the heavy blanket always makes him super sweaty.
Pro Tip: Sweating can be perfectly normal, especially when sleeping or snuggling during nursing sessions. But it can also be signs of heart problems (which we didn’t know until our doctor brought it up!). If your baby is super sweaty, make sure to bring it up with your doctor. It’s probably nothing but always good to play on the safe side!
4 – A Water Bottle
If you’ve already started nursing or breastfed previous babies, you know how thirsty you can get while breastfeeding. Of
Pro Tip: There’s actually a reason for this! The suckling motion and increase in oxytocin while breastfeeding stimulates thirst in moms.
Babies do NOT like unlatching for you to get up and grab a water mid-nursing session. And if you’re like me, it’s awkward to continue nursing and waddle from your chair to the kitchen so you can fill up your water bottle.
For this reason, it’s super important to always have a water bottle in your nursing station. I love water bottles that help to track how much water you’re drinking because it’s so important for me to stay hydrated to keep my milk supply up.
5 – Healthy Snacks
Many new moms (myself included!) also find themselves getting
To help me start making healthier choices, I always add some healthy food options to my nursing station. This guarantees that I have good choices available as soon as I’m hungry. My favorites are high-protein snacks or dried fruit to combat my sugar cravings. Many moms also love adding foods designed to help increase milk supply.
6 – Nursing Log
During the early breastfeeding days, it’s super helpful to add a nursing log to your nursing station. You can either document this information online or you can use a paper form.
These logs are helpful for a couple reasons.
Every time you go to the doctor or visit a lactation counselor, they will ask how often your baby is nursing and how long she spends nursing. At first I had no clue. Seriously, I drew a blank and couldn’t even estimate if I nursed 8 times a day or 18 times a day… (Mom brain is a real thing!)
It’s also helpful to make sure that your baby is eating and using the restroom enough. As a rule of thumb, newborns should
With your online app or paper notebook, you can track breastfeeding times, dirty and wet diapers, bottles, and more! I always made sure this was in my nursing station. Then I kept track of things for the first several months until we found our groove.
7 – Haakaa Breast Pump
You might have already learned about these amazing manual pumps from my post about baby shower gifts new parents love. (It’s one of my favorite choices to gift all expecting moms!)
Using a Haakaa breast pump is seriously the easiest way to build up a freezer stash of milk. And a freezer stash is always handy. You never know when you will need to stop nursing early, need bottles while you’re away from your baby, or want to donate to a mom that can’t breastfeed.
I make sure to always have my Haakaa breast pump in my nursing station. It’s super easy to hook up on the side that your baby isn’t nursing on. All of your letdown (and then some!) goes into the Haakaa pump and you can add a few ounces every single time that you nurse. It is so easy and I quickly built up a big freezer stash without ever spending extra time pumping.
For moms with a heavy letdown, this can also be a great way to make things easier while nursing. Instead of worrying about using a nursing pad, towel, or burp rag to catch letdown on the opposite side, save every drop of that precious liquid gold for when you want it later!
Pro Tip: Watch this video to learn exactly how to “latch” your Haakaa pump to get the most milk each time! (The best tips are from 1:02 to 2:41) I also recommend gently squeezing it 5-10 times right after you latch to stimulate your let-down reflex.
8 – Burp Rags
Your nursing station isn’t complete until you’ve added a few burp rags. Most babies spit up, sometimes infrequently and sometimes every time they nurse. Ideally, you’re prepared and catch all of this in your burp rag instead of searching after it’s too late.
Burp rags are also super handy to wipe runny noses, catch additional let-down if you’re still waiting for your
9 – Entertainment Options
We all want to believe that we will just stare at our babies in awe and spend every nursing session bonding with them. And sometimes you will. Some of my favorite nursing sessions are spent staring at my baby’s beautiful eyelashes as he wraps his hand around my
But when you spend so much time nursing, it can quickly become frustrating and boring to just sit and breastfeed all day long.
One of my favorite ways to make nursing sessions seem faster and more enjoyable is to make sure that I have a few entertainment options. My nursing station always has a book, a magazine, remotes for the TV and Amazon Fire Stick remotes, and my phone. This gives me several different options to keep me sidetracked and entertained, even on the days when I swear I’m spending all of my time breastfeeding.
10 – Nipple Cream
Last, but certainly not least, I always make sure to include a tube of nipple cream in my nursing station.
The first few weeks of breastfeeding are challenging and can be incredibly painful as your baby learns to latch properly and your body gets used to the demands of nursing. Although things are so much better now, I find myself getting sore again during every cluster feeding week or times when my baby wants to comfort nurse more often.
As soon as I start getting sore, I make sure to start applying nipple cream from my nursing station. I love this nipple cream and apply it immediately after every nursing session. This helps to prevent cracking and bleeding and makes breastfeeding so much better for me. Plus it’s safe for my baby when he decides he needs to nurse again.
Browse Amazon for other helpful items to add to your nursing station:
When setting up your nursing station, think about what will make things easier and more comfortable for you.
Use these tips to get started putting together your perfect nursing station today!
Plus, don’t forget to think about other things you might want to add. Ideally, as soon as you sit down to nurse, you have everything you might need. This allows you to sit back, relax, and bond with your baby instead of watching the clock because you need to get up for things you forgot.
Did you have a nursing station while you were breastfeeding? What were your favorite nursing station essentials?