Burping and positioning for burping

Burping helps to get rid of some of the air that babies tend to swallow during feeding. Not being burped often and swallowing too much air can make a baby spit up, or seem cranky or gassy.

Burping your baby regularly, even if they don't show discomfort or release any gas when you burp them. While a few babies need to be burped more frequently, many parents make the mistake of disrupting feedings with unnecessary attempts at burping. This prolongs the feeding time, which frustrates a hungry baby and increases air swallowing.

There are three common burping positions: over your shoulder, sitting on your lap, or face-down on your lap. Choose the one that's most comfortable and effective for getting burps out of your baby. Whichever position you choose, though, have a burp cloth by your baby's mouth to catch any spit-up.

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Stand or sit comfortably, slightly reclining, and hold your baby under their bottom for support. Make sure they're facing behind you, looking over your shoulder, with their chin resting on a soft cloth to absorb any spit-up from a burp. Use one hand to hold the baby and the other to burp.
Put a cloth over your shoulder. Put the baby over your shoulder and support the baby with your hand on the same side. When the baby is upright, gently rub and pat serially baby’s back with your other hand.

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Your baby might vomit up some milk during burping. This is normal.

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Sitting on Your Lap: Place your baby sideways on your lap, with their chest leaning slightly forward. Position your hand under their chin (not their throat) to support their chest and head. Pat their back across the shoulder blades to burp them.
Sit baby upright on your lap. Lean the baby forward with the baby's tummy against your hand. The pressure of your hand on the baby's tummy might bring up wind. Rub the baby's back gently with your other hand.

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Face-Down on Your Lap: Lay your baby across your knees on their belly, with their head slightly higher than the rest of their body, and firmly rub and pat their back.
Place the baby face down on your lap or your forearm so the baby is looking sideways and is supported by your knee or hand. Rub the baby's back gently with your other hand.

Some babies might be unsettled during and after a feed until they’ve been burped. Burping your baby part way through a feed might help. Use the position that works best for your baby.

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