The short answer is every birthing person should have a lactation consultant and support team before and after birth! The fourth trimester is a transitional time in the mother/ birthing person’s life. You
have a new, highly dependent person to take care of 24 hours a day! Your baby’s every scream,
movement, and behavior can be hard to interpret. On top of all the newness of parenthood, you might
have questions and concerns about nursing and breastfeeding. Where do you turn? The first step is to
surround yourself with supportive family, friends, and new mother and parent support groups. A
community of support is so important to help you know that you are not alone – many others have gone
through what you are going through right now and can give you tips to help!
But what if your support network is not enough? What if you feel like you’ve tried everything you know
and you or your baby are struggling with breastfeeding/chestfeeding? Or maybe you have breast or
chest concerns during the prenatal time that you think will impact lactation postpartum? Now is the
time to call a Lactation Consultant (IBCLC)!
What on earth is an IBCLC?
Glad you asked! IBCLC stands for International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant. To become an
IBCLC, the student goes through an extensive lactation training program that requires 14 health-science
classes, 300-1000 clinical hours, and 95 lactation-specific education hours with a certifying exam
administered by the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (https://iblce.org/). An
IBCLC, once certified, is a member of the allied healthcare team which includes your pediatrician,
OB/GYN, and other health-care providers. An IBCLC works alongside and with your health care team to
help give you the confidence and tools you and your baby need to reach all your breastfeeding and
Specifically, what can an IBCLC help you with?
First and foremost, a lactation consultant will always support your family’s nursing goals, whether that
means exclusive breast/chestfeeding, mixed feeding, formula feeding, exclusive pumping, and more!
You, your baby, and your support people are the experts on your own journey. An IBCLC can offer
support, targeted suggestions, specific education, and a personalized care plan to help you succeed.
These are some of the things an IBCLC can help you with:
- Latch and positioning difficulties
- Increase low milk production
- Decrease overproduction
- Assess milk transfer at the chest/breast through test weights
- Comfort measures for pain, nipple wounds, engorgement, plug ducts, mastitis, and more!
- Assess pump flange fit and optimizing pump output
- Provide prenatal and postpartum lactation education
- Referrals to other health care providers
We are here to help you reach your goals! Reach out to Tara and Michelle today at 281-699-8054 to
schedule your consultation.