Hundreds of gadgets and gizmos are on the market that all claim to make parenthood a breeze. It’s easy to get sucked in thinking the more products you buy, the easier and simpler your life will be!
But sadly, this is not entirely true.
Boppy pillows are one of those magical products that claim to make nursing, and other newborn baby struggles super easy, but is it true? Lucky for you, we’ve researched whether Boppy pillows are worth it and how to use them.
The short answer is yes; Boppy pillows are worth it. There are dozens of uses both during pregnancy, postpartum, and of course, for the baby. Boppy pillows can be used for nursing, bottle feeding, as a sitting aid for both and mom, and to help with acid reflux.
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What are Boppy Pillows?
Boppy pillows have several uses for young babies and are generally very popular. C-shaped pillows can support both mom and baby in several scenarios.
Boppy pillows are one of the most popular options available as a nursing aid, as the C shape of the pillow fits nicely around a mother’s belly to provide support.
The pillow angle is also used to help the baby sit upright while their abdominal muscles grow, allowing the baby to view the world without being fully upright.
How to Use Boppy Pillows – 6 Methods
How to use Boppy Pillows for Nursing Support
- Find somewhere comfortable to sit with good back support.
- Place the Boppy pillow on your lap and wrap the C shape around your waist.
- Place your baby on their side on top of the Boppy, with their face pointed towards you.
- Try to level the height of their mouth with the breast you’re intending to nurse with. If the baby is too low, support their head and upper torso in your arm and bring them higher and closer. Either the baby or your arm should be resting on the Boppy, and you should be relatively comfortable.
- Nurse your baby.
- Don’t arch your back and lower your chest to your baby. Try to ensure you are in a comfortable, upright position, and instead, adjust the pillow and baby to fit your needs. Consider using another pillow under the Boppy if your baby is too low, or lift the baby in your arms and rest your arm on the pillow.
- Use the football hold if that is more comfortable for you. Next, position the baby alongside your body, perched on the Boppy pillow. Their feet should be pointing towards your back.
- If you have yet to find a comfortable position to nurse with the Boppy, dozens of videos on YouTube outline the different ways to use a Boppy pillow for nursing. You will be nursing A LOT, so it’s worthwhile finding a position that is comfortable for you and your baby.
How to Bottle Feed Using a Boppy Pillow
The method is similar to nursing. However, it’s important to note that you should not use the Boppy pillow to prop up your baby so that he/she can feed herself/himself.
Babies who can’t sit or hold a bottle of their own are not ready to feed unassisted and may choke when feeding.
Steps for using a boppy pillow for nursing:
- Find somewhere to sit with good back support.
- Place the Boppy on your lap, wrapping it around your waist.
- Place the baby on their back, on the Boppy.
- Cradle the baby’s head and upper torso in your arm.
- Make sure your arm is not in a position of tension and is instead resting on the pillow.
- Feed the bay by holding the bottle with your other hand.
- Feed away!
How to Use a Boppy Pillow as a Sitting Aid for Baby
Boppy pillows are super helpful in assisting your baby to sit up slightly before they have the necessary stomach muscles to do it on their own.
Lying down all the time, starting at the ceiling, can be pretty dull for babies. So instead, it’s nice for them to sit up slightly and see what’s going on and be able to see where you are.
Even after your baby has enough tummy muscles, the Boppy is still useful to help them when they are tired to prevent them from falling over.
How to use the Boppy for sitting up:
- Place the Boppy on the floor- not somewhere elevated, such as a couch or table, as the baby may roll off.
- Place the bay in the center of the Boppy, with their back against the curve of the pillow and their legs pointed towards the opening.
- Tuck the ends of the pillow towards each other to close off the C shape a little, and snuggle the baby into the seat. This will prevent the baby from rolling and falling out of the Boppy.
- As the baby gets a little older and stronger, move the ends of the C shape a little further apart, so they have a little less support. This will allow the baby to continue gaining confidence and strength so they eventually learn to sit on their own.
- Supervise the baby while they are in the Boppy, as they may fall over and won’t be able to move themselves back into the correct position.
How to Use Boppy for Baby’s Tummy Time
Tummy time is when you place your baby on his or her stomach while they’re awake and supervised. The purpose is to prevent flat spots on the back of their head while they develop and strengthen their neck and shoulder muscles so they can sit up, crawl, and eventually walk.
You can use a Boppy pillow to assist with tummy time while the baby is very young and unable to really participate in tummy time.
Steps for using a Boppy for tummy time:
- Place a soft blanket on the floor that will feel comfortable on your baby’s skin.
- Place a Boppy pillow on top of the blanket.
- Place the baby inside the curve of the C shape with their face towards the ground but still in the open air so they can be comfortable and breathe easily.Their arms and shoulders propped on top of the pillow.
- Place a few toys in front of the pillow as an incentive for them to lift their head and move a little.
- Allow the baby to play on their tummy until they are unable to hold their head up and begin crying or fussing. This should be around 5 to 20 minutes, depending on their age and strength.
- Supervise them at all times. Very young babies have little control over their heads and may bury their faces into the pillow and accidentally suffocate.
- Additionally, the position can become uncomfortable for the baby, and they won’t be strong enough to readjust themselves to the correct position. So make sure you’re there and able to reposition their arms and legs to be more comfortable.
- Increase the length of tummy time gradually as your baby’s strength grows.
How to use Boppy Pillow for Mommy’s Sleep and Sitting
Boppy pillows can be used to help moms sleep more peacefully either during pregnancy or in postpartum.
However, Boppy pillows should never be used for babies when they sleep.
When sleeping, place the Boppy pillow between your knees or thighs to position yourself more comfortably. If you often experience back pain or sciatic pain during pregnancy, Boppy pillows can be very useful in bed.
You can also use the Boppy pillow postpartum to make sitting more comfortable. Sitting on a Boppy takes the pressure off your bottom and vagina and can make sitting a lot less painful, especially when recovering from tears and hemorrhoids.
You can also use Boppys to provide more back support. You can throw it around the back of your neck for support or simply place it behind your back when on the couch.
How to Use Boppy Pillow for Baby’s Acid Reflux
Many babies experience bad acid reflux, which causes them to spit up continually. It can be very uncomfortable for the baby and make them super miserable.
Until the baby’s digestive system matures, acid reflux can be a real pain and cause gas pain.
Placing your baby on a Boppy pillow, sitting up slightly, can help keep their milk or food down a little and reduce the frequency of spitting up.