There is a lot of baby gear on the market, but the one item that makes all my friends “must-have” lists is the Boppy Nursing Pillow and Positioner–or at least a similar nursing pillow. You might think you can do this a little cheaper and just use a standard pillow, but it is not the same at all.
Even the most expensive Boppy is very affordable and it is well worth the investment. The amount of support and comfort that it provides as well as a seat for your baby to use daily as he or she grows through the first year is unbeatable.
Here are some of the benefits of the Boppy Nursing Pillow and Positioner and some great ways you can use it.
Relieves Back Pain
After I gave birth the first time, I could not believe what a strain the entire pregnancy had put on my back. Most new moms assume that their pregnancy back pain will go away as they recover from labor and delivery, but more often than not, their backs are even more sore and bodies more stressed.
Part of this is from the endless carrying and rocking your baby throughout the first year or two. Another huge contributor is nursing your baby. Nursing can put a huge strain on your back since you either have to hold your baby to meet your breast, depending solely on your arms, or you have to slump over to make your breast meet your baby as you rest your arms in your lap. Either one can be really hard on your body and it doesn’t take long until you know something’s gotta give.
The Boppy Nursing Pillow and Positioner is one of those baby gear products that the mom will enjoy just as much, if not more than the baby. The pillow will wrap snugly around your waist so it won’t slide around and your baby can rest comfortably on the surface of it. This lifts your baby to meet your breast and allows you to sit in a more ergonomic position. You can sit for hours–and you likely will–without being in agony from back pain.
Great For Bottle Feeding Too
Even if you aren’t a nursing mom, the Boppy Nursing Pillow and Positioner works great for a bottle feeding mom and dad as well. Any caregiver can attest that holding a baby, even a very small one, can wear you out after a while. The Boppy will give you the kind of support that you need and will provide a soft place for your baby to lay and interact with their caregiver.
Even when you are not using the pillow around your own waist to aid you in feeding your baby, your baby can still use it. The Bobby Nursing Pillow and Positioner serves as a kind of seat for a newborn that you can place on the floor. Your baby can be propped up to be able to observe the world around him or her.
Helps With Let Down
One of the great benefits of the Boppy is how easily maneuverable it is. Even though it is marketed to nursing mothers, it can also be helpful for pumping mothers. It can be difficult at times to let down your milk without a baby. One thing that experts have found to be helpful is to think about your baby, or look at your baby while you are pumping. If your baby can be propped on a pillow next to you as you pump, you may have more success and produce more.
The importance of tummy time is stressed by most pediatricians from the moment your baby goes home until he or she can crawl. What are the benefits of tummy time and how can the Boppy help?
Benefits of Tummy Time
According to the Mayo Clinic, “placing a baby on his or her stomach only while awake and supervised — can help your baby develop strong neck and shoulder muscles and promote motor skills. Tummy time can also prevent the back of your baby’s head from developing flat spots (positional plagiocephaly).”
How to Encourage Muscle Growth
Your baby tends to stay in one position on their back for long periods of time, especially in the first few months of their lives. However, your baby needs to be able to hold their head up to develop the muscles that it will need to keep holding his or her head up in life. You can start doing mock tummy time from day one by resting your baby up against your chest while awake, so their head is poking up above your shoulder. Early on your baby will attempt to lift his or her head up to look around.
Many babies do not enjoy tummy time for long periods of time. You may want to start them out doing 3 to 4 minutes at a time a few times a day. As your baby gets accustomed to it, you can make the sessions longer and more frequent.
The Boppy is not safe to use for tummy time until your baby is about 3 months old or older because your baby may not be able to keep from laying his or her face flat on the pillow.
Boppy Tummy Time
Once your baby does have some control over his or her head, you can use the Boppy Pillow and Positioner to allow your baby to look around and exercise. It is also a great opportunity to give the back of your baby’s head a rest to avoid developing the flat spots.
If you do use it to position your baby for tummy time, you can encourage your baby to look around and exercise even more by directing their attention to different spots. You can lay some favorite toys in front of them in different positions. Your baby may even try to reach for them, which is also great exercise. You can also position yourself in front of your baby and make cooing sounds and silly faces to distract them if they don’t tend to love tummy time.
The Boppy Pillow and Positioner is a great option for tummy time because it is much more comfortable than the hard ground. Your baby might even enjoy the incline it provides.
The next position that your Boppy Nursing Pillow and Positioner can help with is sitting. As your baby is learning to sit, they will be wobbly and fall often. Just as your baby needed to develop the muscles in his or her neck and shoulders through tummy time and lifting his or her neck, your baby will also need to develop trunk muscles through sitting.
Tummy time actually helps develop the trunk muscles before your baby is even ready to attempt sitting. Some children can even learn to sit by 4 months, according to Parents.com. However most children learn to sit a bit later up to about 9 months.
Provides A Safe Support
The Boppy Pillow holds your baby securely in the hole provided in the middle. The sides are raised just enough to help your baby balance and develop their muscles while moving side to side, but not high enough that they can depend on them completely to hold them up.
While your baby is learning to sit and is still wobbly, do not leave them alone in the Boppy. You should try to monitor your child closely while in the pillow to make sure there are no major falls.
Variety Of Available Fabrics
People go pretty crazy about the style that they want their baby to have in their nursery and the style that they wear, and every parent is different. It is nearly impossible to find a pattern that every parent is going to like while also making them feel unique and special.
One thing that Boppy does, which most moms appreciate, is they offer a wide range of fabric styles that you can buy as pillow covers. They are machine washable, and should be washed often, so you can even buy a variety of patters and styles to change around whenever you get tired of one or the other. You can have more cozy fabrics or more fun designs. Whatever is most important to you, you can get for yourself.
Different Gender Options
You especially appreciate this variety when you are a parent to multiple children. You obviously don’t want to go out and buy a whole new pillow if you have a baby of a different gender than your first. Being able to choose from many different options at an affordable price makes it possible to have a pillow cover that you absolutely love and that fits your baby. No one wants to be limited to gender neutral covers because they know they want more than one child. It’s nice to be able to have a bit of your own style and personality in each baby gear product that you buy.
Overall, there is no doubt why the Boppy Nursing Pillow and Positioner is one of the most popular baby gear products on the market. Mothers have been using them for decades and they are on most baby registries. Until you spend several hours a day feeding a tiny human being, it may be difficult to understand how life-changing a pillow can be, but once you use one for the first time, you will never go back.