Establish appropriate expectations for new parents at the time of their baby’s birth
Encourage mom to ask for support from staff with breastfeeding immediately after birth and during hospital stay
Be available for mom in early days home, and beyond
Provide consistent, evidence-based information to parents
Recognize uniqueness of each mom/baby
Recognize and address risk factors for early weaning before they interfere with successful breastfeeding
Assist mom in plan for reaching her own breastfeeding goals
If humans are wired to breastfeed and it's been done since the beginning of time, why do I need help to do it?
This is a valid question. The answer is that maybe you won't! Many moms, through the course of pregnancy and birth, find that they are surrounded by friends and family who have experience with breastfeeding. That may be why breastfeeding seems like a logical choice! The more we see it, the more normal we think of breastfeeding. That's a good thing! But while breastfeeding has always been natural, that does not mean that it comes naturally, or easily to many moms. When you give birth, often your midwife, or your nurses, will help you get started with breastfeeding. Once you are home, friends, family, and support groups, can usually offer help and suggestions that will resolve any difficulties. I highly recommend seeking out that support! (click here for the support group and other resoures page)
Because of your circumstances, you may prefer to have a professional give you personalized attention and assistance. Private practice IBCLCs fill this role. Many moms, find that what they need is one-on-one help when they have questions or breastfeeding seems difficult, in spite of all the help or advice they are getting. Maybe, you are getting conflicting advice and it's really making things difficult! My personal motto is There are lots of right ways to do things! But you need help figuring out what is right for you!
I am a registered nurse, certified in maternal newborn nursing, and a board certified lactation consultant in private practice. While $125 - $205, seems like a lot for the time required for a consultation, think of it this way: you get someone with years of study and experience, my full attention focused on you and your baby, two full weeks of follow up via email, phone or text, detailed reports for health care providers (putting everyone on the same page for your care), and someone who is required to learn, learn, learn how to support you. As an IBCLC, I spend time reading research, connecting with other lactation professionals, and staying up to date on the latest methods, trends, and breastfeeding products. Adding all that up, compared to the cost formula feeding, it’s a bargain! But of course, it's not just about the money. Breastfeeding has so many benefits for mother and baby!
If an in-home consult seems expensive, compare the value along side other things you would spend or already have spent money on for your baby. How much did you pay for your stroller? How about all the other cool baby gear that you thought you needed? Would you be willing to pay that much for expert support? If you are feeling challenged by breastfeeding and considering giving up, consider the cost of NOT seeking professional help: artificial baby milk (formula) bottles and the energy required to prepare, heat, store, and clean them; and the statistically likely increase in healthcare costs for a baby who doesn’t receive breastmilk. If you are having problems, if it hurts, it's time to ASK FOR HELP!
As an RN and an IBCLC, I can be a critical player on your team. My job is to play a unique and expert role in detecting and solving breastfeeding problems. My role is also to encourage you to seek out support of other moms. I can't stress enough how invaluable that is.
You get a professional, an encourager, a detective, a clinician and cheerleader all rolled into one! All that in a house call! Strong support means strong Moms and Babes!