A lactation consultant is a specialist trained to help you breastfeed your baby. Babies should drink only breast milk for their first six months, but if you are facing challenges that you are unable to handle alone and breastfeeding is becoming more stressful for both you and your newborn, help is available.
Here are seven reasons you should contact a lactation consultant for individualized assistance:
You’re in Pain
Are your nipples sore, cracked or bleeding? Pain can make you lose your motivation to keep nursing, but a lactation consultant can help you figure out if there is an issue with how your baby is latching on.
You also may have a plugged duct or an infection. A trained specialist can make sure you get the right treatment and show you how to prevent these issues in the future.
Baby Is Losing Weight
It’s normal for babies to lose a small amount of weight in their first few days. However, if breastfeeding is challenging and you notice that your baby is not wetting and soiling diapers frequently enough, it could be a sign your baby is losing weight or not gaining as fast as he or she should.
A lactation consultant can provide insight as to why this might be the case, offering solutions to help you make sure your baby is getting necessary nutrients.
You’re Breastfeeding Multiples
Breastfeeding can be difficult when one baby depends on you, but multiples can be even harder to manage. You will need assistance from someone experienced with this scenario to help you develop a routine that works for you and all of your babies.
Your Baby Was Born Early
If your baby was premature or either you or the newborn experienced difficulties during labor and birth, you may need guidance when starting or keeping up with breastfeeding.
You’re Facing Health Issues
Have you developed diabetes or are you facing another health issue? Talk to a lactation consultant about how you can continue to breastfeed throughout this time.
Baby Is Developing Teeth
How do you manage when your baby’s teeth begin to appear? Teething can make you uncomfortable, and may even motivate you to stop breastfeeding. Before you make that decision, discuss the problem with a lactation consultant to see if there are strategies you could try that would help you and your baby work together so breastfeeding can continue.
You Have Questions
Any time you have a question about breastfeeding, such as how it affects your baby’s sleep schedule or how to pump enough milk if you’re returning to work, talk about your issues with a lactation consultant and get a professional’s take on your situation.
Depend on Rocky Mountain Women’s Health Center to help you find a lactation consultant for one-on-one, caring guidance that will help improve you and your baby’s breastfeeding experience.