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What Is a Lactation Consultant & How They Can Make Your Life Easier

 

Are you having difficulties when it comes to breastfeeding your infant? This can be common for many mothers, but finding a lactation consultant might be helpful if you are looking for extra support or guidance.

If you’re experiencing any difficulties or concerns when it comes to breastfeeding, remember that you’re not alone, and there are resources available to help you. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed, anxious, or feeling stressed about whether or not you are breastfeeding “correctly.”

If your baby is growing healthily and not experiencing any discomfort when breastfeeding, you are most likely doing a great job. However, consider reaching out to a lactation consultant if you are feeling worried, need support, or have any breastfeeding issues or challenges while breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding can be a challenge for many mothers, so there is no shame in needing a helping hand.

At Greater Than, we want you to have a smooth transition from birth to breastfeeding. That’s why we created our high-electrolyte drinks to help boost your energy and breast milk production. Let’s discuss what a lactation consultant is and whether or not they’re right for you.

Who Are Lactation Consultants?

An international board-certified lactation consultant is an expert who specializes in breastfeeding and has received credentials from the IBLCE. Training is rigorous and requires lactation-specific education and 300-1,000 hours of directly supervised clinical lactation practice.

What Do Lactation Consultants Do?

These breastfeeding specialists help to treat common and serious nursing issues. Solutions can come in many forms, such as how to increase your milk supply, help you find the best nursing position, and alleviate discomfort when breastfeeding.

How Do They Help?

Lactation consultants can help you with your breastfeeding goals. Breastfeeding can be a challenge for many first-time mothers, so finding support from an expert with no judgment can be an excellent option for many mothers.

Lactation consultants can help you with various challenges or issues you may encounter. Here are some ideas on how a lactation consultant can help you:

  • If you are taking medications while breastfeeding
  • If you had a lack of breastfeeding support, especially during your hospital stay
  • If you are experiencing problems with milk production, such as low milk supply
  • If you have concerns about your infant’s nutrition or baby weight
  • If you have problems with your baby latching

Lactation consultants can make your life as a mom more manageable, especially if you need support if you’re experiencing difficulties while breastfeeding.

There are many different ways they can help. Here are some examples of how a lactation consultant can help you:

  • They can help you improve your baby’s latch
  • Help you increase your baby’s weight
  • Help you determine a pumping schedule
  • Help you boost your breastmilk supply production
  • Help you treat nipple soreness or breastfeeding discomfort
  • Help you with mastitis or plugged ducts,
  • Help improve your baby’s latch
  • Help you determine the best breastfeeding positions
  • Help you establish your baby’s feeding schedule

You can find lactation consultants through a variety of resources, such as through your hospital, birth center, childbirth educators, midwives, or visit the International Lactation Consultant Association website.

There are a variety of reasons why a lactation consultant can be helpful for you and your baby. Always reach out to your healthcare provider to get referrals on a lactation consultant and whether or not they can be beneficial for you.

When To See a Lactation Consultant?

You can expect to see a lactation consultant the first few days after birth. This is a critical period because you learn how to establish breastfeeding and monitor your baby’s weight gain.

The two weeks after you bring your newborn home is crucial in establishing successful breastfeeding, and you may find that a lactation consultant can be helpful during this time.

If you are experiencing any minor issues or have any questions, you can call a lactation consultant as soon as you are able. Suppose you are experiencing any serious issues while breastfeeding or have concerns about latching. In that case, it’s essential to contact a specialist as soon as you can.

The cost of seeing a lactation consultant varies depending on where you live, your services, and your health insurance. If you receive a visit from a lactation consultant during your stay at the hospital is covered by your specific plan.

What To Ask A Lactation Consultant?

Every breastfeeding mom is different and may need a lactation consultant. Asking questions can be an excellent way to get to know your lactation consultant to see if they are a good fit.

Here are some questions you can ask:

  • How do I know if my baby is hungry?
  • How do I begin to breastfeed?
  • What are the best positions to breastfeed?
  • What if I can’t produce enough milk?
  • Why does it hurt when I breastfeed?
  • How do I use my breast pump?
  • How will I know if something is wrong?
  • When should I start weaning?

It can also be helpful to ask questions if you’re interviewing them prior to giving birth. Here are some other questions you can ask:

  • What should I expect in the first few days after birth?
  • Can you come to the hospital after my baby is born to help me?
  • Are you always available for questions?
  • What should I expect when seeking breastfeeding help?

If you are experiencing a specific issue or challenge while breastfeeding, it’s important to come up with some questions about what you’re experiencing to reach a solution.

Working With A Lactation Consultant

When you get a lactation consultant, expect them to be very hands-on because they will see and touch your breasts to help evaluate and treat breastfeeding problems. It’s normal to feel awkward during this, but you will become used to it as time passes.

A Final Note From Greater Than

If you are having any difficulties or struggles when it comes to breastfeeding, we want to stress that you should not feel ashamed to ask for help. You are not a bad mother, and it is completely normal to experience challenges during this time.

We know how frustrating it is to find it challenging to nurse your baby, especially if it’s causing you stress or impacting your sleep quality. Again, you are not a bad parent, and chances are, if your baby is gaining weight, then you are doing more than enough.

If you are experiencing challenges, even minor, or need extra guidance during this time, especially if you have a newborn, then make sure to reach out to a lactation consultant.

At Greater Than, we want to make sure you have the information you need to make informed choices that are best for your and your baby’s needs.

We want you to know that you’re supported, whether it’s through our hydrating drinks or blog posts to help you with whatever you need. Our Trial 6-Flavor Variety Pack contains endless benefits for mothers and the entire family! After all, not all hydration drinks are created equal.

Sources:

NEW FALC Directory | International Lactation Consultant Association

Breastfeeding | WHO

International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners | IBLCE

Mastitis - Symptoms and causes | Mayo Clinic

Managing plugged ducts, mastitis when breastfeeding | Mayo Clinic Health System

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