Many new moms have a breastfeeding story. Maybe the intention was to exclusively breastfeed for the first 6 months, the first year of life, or the first two years of life, but a roadblock stood in the way of that goal. If you’re in need of support, there are many resources that can help you get back on track.
The World Health Organization recommends mothers breastfeed for the first two years of life, and the American Academy of Pediatrics recently announced a similar recommendation, calling for more support for breastfeeding mothers.
Learn from our certified lactation consultants
International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant® (IBCLC) Tiffany Hills and Sandra Johnson, Certified Lactation Consultant (CLC), offer support and guidance to moms through the Breastfeeding Center at Memorial. They shared some of the common issues they see and helpful resources for families.
When asked how a working mom should prepare for returning to work and continuing to breastfeed, Tiffany shares, “Create a pumping routine and research the different pumps that are available that are more convenient for pumping on the go. There is a learning curve to pumps, and we offer support with that. One of my goals as a lactation consultant is to make returning to work and pumping an easier transition for the working mother, which will help extend the mother’s breastfeeding goals.”
Sandra adds, “A lot of moms will tell us that family members are worried about watching the baby because the baby is exclusively breastfed. We encourage moms to pump and leave milk with their partner or family member to support them when they need a break.”
Both Tiffany and Sandra recommend taking a breastfeeding class before baby arrives. Tiffany adds, “Bring the people who will be watching your child so they know what to expect and they can support you adequately.”
Roadblocks to success include a lack of education about breastfeeding, unrealistic expectations about feeding patterns and how much a baby needs, limited support from family, and difficulties transitioning to the workplace postpartum are all common issues.
Resources for families
Resources for expectant and new moms and families include:
- Find out how many lactation consultant visits are covered by your insurance.
- Memorial’s Breastfeeding Center offers consultations, nursing supplies, free prenatal information, educational information, and much more. Call (228) 867-4053 or visit wearememorial.com.
- If you have chosen to stop breastfeeding and want to begin again, speak to a lactation consultant to get guidance.
- Find your local La Leche League group to get support by visiting lllusa.org.
- Breastfeeding information is available through WIC by visiting wicbreastfeeding.fns.usda.gov.
- Memorial BabyTalk prenatal classes are available for free, except for Infant CPR. Call (228) 575-2299 or click here for schedules.
- U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division can help you determine whether you have the right to take breaks to pump at work. Call the helpline at 1-866-4USWAGE for support.
Memorial Health System is designated as a Baby-Friendly® Hospital, providing an environment that supports breastfeeding while respecting every woman’s right to make the best decision for herself and her family. Memorial has implemented the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, complying with the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes.
Remember that no matter where you are in your breastfeeding journey, help is available, and if breastfeeding did not work for your family, let go of the guilt and always remember that a fed baby is best.