If you feel up to it, you can start breastfeeding as soon as the baby is born. A healthy baby is able to breastfeed in the first hour after birth. Keeping your baby on your chest (called skin-to-skin contact) is the best way to get breastfeeding started. Your labor nurses can help you and your baby get into the right position.

See Breastfeeding Your Baby to learn more.

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Published: October 2020

Last reviewed: October 2020

Copyright 2023 by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. All rights reserved. Read copyright and permissions information.

This information is designed as an educational aid for the public. It offers current information and opinions related to women's health. It is not intended as a statement of the standard of care. It does not explain all of the proper treatments or methods of care. It is not a substitute for the advice of a physician. Read ACOG’s complete disclaimer.