Yes! Definitely you can. It is a common misconception amongst mothers who undergo C-section that they cannot breastfeed their babies. Women who deliver by c-section are less likely to breastfeed,or delay breastfeeding initiation. But these women can breastfeed as successfully as those who give birth vaginally, so long as the mother shows real commitment.
Important points for women who have delivered a baby normally or by c-section:
Breastfeeding within the first hour after the delivery is an important factor of continued breastfeeding.
Babies born via c-section have lesser skin-to-skin contact immediately. This delay after birth affects breastfeeding initiation, maintenance, duration and the suckling ability of the baby.
Mothers who undergo C-section find nursing their babies a bit more difficult, especially right after surgery when lying flat on her back and moreover due to the incision site, which might be pressured in different positions of breastfeeding after C-section.
Side lying position is the best position for nursing, in which the mother lies on her side, a pillow behind supporting her back, and a towel under the knees.
Breastfeeding can in fact help normalize the experience of an operative birth. Thus,it is always better to get information in advance regarding rooming-in at the hospital after the C-section, as extra help from your partner and family members will be needed for taking care of the baby.
Always plan beforehand for the extra help that you will need back at home. It is best to have someone from your family or friends to assist in such condition during the first couple of weeks. No time is sooner to start breastfeeding after a C-section.
How to lie on the side post delivery:
Below are step-by-step instructions on getting into the side-lying position (in a hospital bed) after a c-section:
Begin with the bed in a flat position and side rails up.
Use extra pillows behind the mother’s back for extra support.
Carefully roll to one side while grasping the side rail and relaxing the abdominal muscles. Move slowly to avoid strain.
To protect the incision from the baby’s kicking, cover the abdomen with a small pillow or towel.
Place a pillow between the legs to minimize the strain on the stomach muscles.