Thursday, August 26, 2010

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Prescription Milk: Trailer

We need to combine the advanced medical technology with the human technology and have both work together to save the lives of babies born prematurely. Feeding premature babies donated human milk is life saving.

The latest statistics show that 1 in 8 babies are born prematurely. This equals about 500,000 babies a year, with 40% of the babies not making it through their first year of life.

Liquid Gold - another lovely name for human milk. Mothers donate their liquid gold, their milk because they know that without the immune factors and antibodies provided from their milk, babies will die. WE need for mothers to donate their milk and we need for hospitals and insurance companies to support these efforts.

Feel free to share this video.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Moms sharing breast milk - Channel 12 Interview

I was recently interviewed on Channel 12 News in Phoenix, Arizona.

HUMAN MILK FOR HUMAN BABIES! This is what I would have liked the headlines to say!

The interview lasted close to 30 minutes and below is the final piece. One of these days I will have an opportunity for a full half hour interview and it will all be shown. There was so much more that we talked about and more info I wanted to share.

We talked about local mothers sharing their breastmilk with others and all of the emotions surrounding it as well as the health issues too. There was a discussion about how milk sharing or direct breastfeeding of other babies was very common for many years and why and how things have changed.

Heather and I also talked a bit more about the details regarding friends, family and the mainstream public about this subject and the fact that it is not for everyone. Also discussed was how some families make the decisions as they weigh the health benefits of breastmilk sharing and risks of formula feeding. What is often not talked about is the fact that infant formula is not a guaranteed safe product as there has been many recalls. Infant formula is also not a product that has been approved by the FDA. Interestingly enough, when I talk about these facts, most people have no idea that formula has ever been recalled and are shocked to find this out.

We think it is important to mention this fact as parents weigh their options. We also talked about, that in terms of options, it would be great if all mothers had access to donated milk from the milk banks as their first option. However, this needs a physicians prescription and is very costly and therefore, prohibitive to most families.

I had hoped that also as a part of this interview, was a lot more info on the safety of Human Milk Banks as this would be so educational for the public. It would also have been great to have highlighted some of the few hospitals that are currently using donated milk from the milk banks to feed their most ill babies in the NICU. There are many studies on the amazing health benefits of this. Hospitals that are feeding their very ill babies donated milk from the human milk banks are seeing huge health benefits. Their babies are having less health issues, decreased death rate, gaining weight easier and are discharged earlier that their formula fed ill babies.

For more information on the services that I provide please take a look at my website

Click here for article and video:

Moms sharing breast milk

Friday, August 13, 2010

Nursing mother kicked out of McDonald's

Clarissa Bradford was told to leave a Phoenix McDonald's Wednesday night because she was breastfeeding her 6 month old baby. When the assistant manager told her to leave, Clarissa responded by stating that by Arizona law she was allowed to breastfeed her baby anywhere she wanted to. The assistant manager did not listen or care what she had to say and proceeded to insist that she leave. Below is her story.

Interestingly enough, my daughter Carly, has several friends visiting her and they are all staying at my home. The girls are in the young 20's and are from Scotland, England and New Zealand. When talking about this story, none of the girls could really believe it is true. They have never heard of, first of all needing such laws to protect breastfeeding, and second it never occured to them that breastfeeding in public was something people would object to.

When asked about the laws in their country and about public views on nursing in public, they say they are not absolutely sure of the law, but they do know that nursing in public is not something that is talked about in a negative way. Actually they all said that it was a very normal thing to see. Most moms nurse discreetly, some using a coverup of some sort and others not needing to. In a good way, it is such a non-issue in their countries that they feel there really is not much to talk about.

Comments are welcome. My personal comment on this issue continues to be: "is this really happening in this day and age? In America? It just can't be."

Nursing mother kicked out of McDonald's

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Breastfeeding is NOT suppose to hurt - Part 2

During childbirth, the pains we feel from contractions do hurt and yet this is pain with a purpose. The work of labor is to cause the uterine muscle to go through changes that create the stretching of the uterine muscles... all to help bring your baby down and out into your arms. This labor period is a relatively short period of time and we can help ourselves tremendously to get through this period. Learning and practicing relaxation techniques, trusting birth and choosing the right careproviders are all part of the ingredients to help you have a safe birth as planned.

So, while pain during childbirth is expected and we can work through it, pain during breastfeeding signals us that something is wrong and we should not have to use techniques to help us get through the pain each and every time you breastfeed. So, what do we do as new mothers when there are people around us who say that newborn breastfeeding pain is normal? My first thought is: Normal for who? And why? And for how long? And just because that was there experience, does not mean it has to be your experience also.

So, here's the thing. My peer lactation consultants and I are pretty intense about teaching mothers that this should not be hurting. Why? Because frequently this means breastfeeding failure. You just discontinue offering your milk altogether, whether it be from the direct breast or from a bottle. Or you decide to exclusively pump and bottlefeed.

What is wrong with this picture? Well, it does not matter so much what I or someone else wants. What is wrong with this picture is that this is not what you had wanted.
You looked forward to the experience of holding your baby against your body, having them latch on and seeing them drink your milk,, directly from you. I strongly encourage mothers who are in this position to seek help from an experienced IBCLC. At least until you can get help, be sure to keep up your milk production with regular pumping and be sure to feed your baby as frequently as he/she desires, which is usually 8 - 10 feedings a day.

If the pump you are using is anything less than a hospital grade pump and you are finding that you are not making enough to keep up with your baby, I would encourage you to switch pumps, at least just temporarily, until you can get breastfeeding going well.

As lactation specialists, our mantra is:

1. Feed the baby ( even if it means temporarily with a bottle)
2. Protect the milk production ( regular and frequent milk removal)

As long as you are doing numbers 1 & 2, there is always lots of opportunity to work on your breastfeeding challenges, solve your issues and begin breastfeeding in comfort. NOT suppose to hurt

That is right! Breastfeeding is not suppose to hurt. Breastfeeding your baby can sometimes be tiring for some mothers in the early days, but it is not suppose to hurt. So, why do so many mothers spend weeks on end enduring significant pain before they either get help or give up? Why? Well, I am frequently told that because they have read or been told that it can be quite painful for the first 2-4 weeks, mothers think this is normal. They suffer needlessly, just waiting for their pain to get better. Certainly for some mothers, their pain becomes less and less as the weeks go on. For other mothers, they may give up because the pain is so bad. And others gratefully receive help from an experienced lactation consultant.

There are a few important facts about early breastfeeding that I work hard to let all mothers know and learn.

#1. Breastfeeding is not suppose to hurt.
#2. If it is hurting, something is not right.
#3. If something is not right and you don't know what to do to fix it, get help.
#4. Getting help from an expert is a lot less expensive than the alternative... especially in the long run.
#5. When you put your baby to the breast, it should elicit a strong feeling of love and comfort and relaxation.

More on this in my next post.


Saturday, August 7, 2010

World Breastfeeding Week Tribute

World Breastfeeding Week highlights the role of health professionals

Please watch this video which discusses the Ten Steps to Healthy Breastfeeding.
All parents to be should be made aware of this information as they go through the process of choosing where they would like to give birth and who they would like to participate in the healthcare of their babies.

1. Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff.

2. Train all health care staff in skills necessary to implement this policy.

3. Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.

4. Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within a half-hour of birth.

5. Show mothers how to breastfeed and how to maintain lactation, even if they should be separated from their infants.

6. Give newborn infants no food or drink other than breast milk unless medically indicated.

7. Practice rooming- in - allow mothers and infants to remain together - 24 hours a day.

8. Encourage breastfeeding on demand.

9. Give no artificial teats or pacifiers (also called dummies or soothers) to breastfeeding infants.

10. Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital or clinic.