Shopping Cart
Your Cart is Empty
Quantity:
Subtotal
Taxes
Shipping
Total
There was an error with PayPalClick here to try again
CelebrateThank you for your business!You should be receiving an order confirmation from Paypal shortly.Exit Shopping Cart

Sweet Pea Births

Chandler, Arizona

Sweet Pea Births

...celebrating every swee​t pea their birth

Blog

Insurance May Cover Lactation Consults

Posted on August 6, 2013 at 8:23 AM Comments comments (1)
I am happy to share information about lactation care as it relates to the Affordable Care Act with you today.  Desiree, a friend of mine from Phoenix, has been kind enough to share her vast knowledge on the topic.  She has spent countless hours on the phone with the insurance companies learning how to best use the law in favor of nursing mothers.  This is the first in a three-part series on how you, as a lactating mama, can use the Affordable Care Act to your advantage.

What a relief, to know that you might be able to use insurance to cover Lactation Consults in the early days after you deliver your baby.  This is the first in a series of articles on the Affordable Healthcare Act as it relates to breastfeeding: 

  1. What is the benefit provided by the ACA?
  2. How can I request coverage for a Lactation Consult with an IBCLC
  3. What do I do if my insurance company does not contract with an IBCLC?

 
I am an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant in private practice and I share this material for informational purposes only.  Each insurance plan is a little different and it is best to call and request the specifics from your individual plans. 

Copied from the Health Services Administration website:  Non-grandfathered plans and issuers are required to provide coverage without cost sharing consistent with these guidelines in the first plan year (in the individual market, policy year) that begins on or after August 1, 2012”  http://www.hrsa.gov/womensguidelines/

At first glance the law seems pretty straightforward.  Breastfeeding support, supplies and counseling by a trained provider is covered for non-grandfathered plans renewing 08/01/2012.    It is included in Women’s Expanded Preventive  Services Benefits.  If you qualify for the breast pump or free contraception, you likely have the coverage, but call first.  It is supposed to cover services without applying to your copay or your deductible. 
 
Here is where it becomes less straightforward: the law does not define who exactly is the trained provider, how long the services must be rendered, and that it apply to both in-network and out-of-network benefits.  The US Surgeon General, in her Breastfeeding Call to Action in 2011, explained the provider of choice for the services is an IBCLC.  IBCLC credentialing is essential for Lactation Consultants providing Lactation Services to breastfeeding mothers.  The credentialing process entails coursework, 2000+ counseling hours with mothers, following a code of ethics, and an international board exam.  We recertify every 5 years with 75 hours of CERPS and take the board exam every 10 years.  It is considered the gold standard of Lactation Care and is equivalent to a Physical Therapist, Speech & Language Pathologist, or Occupational Therapist in years of study, counseling, assessment, and intervention skills. 
 
Insurance companies often assume it is the OBGYN, Pediatrician, or hospital IBCLCs who provide the service.  What they don’t realize is OBGYNs and Pediatricians often refer to IBCLCs and that most women need additional help after leaving the hospital when her milk comes in.  Insurance companies may confirm you have the benefits, but neglect to inform you that it is only available with an in-network provider.  Confirm whether you company contracts with an IBCLC and if not clarify whom it feels is a trained provider.  If, you are given a pump rental company, and they are not a trained provider, then push for an IBCLC.  Currently there are two insurance companies in AZ contracting with IBCLCs- Aetna and BCBSAZ.  United Health Care is exploring the possibility, but no contracts yet and CIGNA will not contract with IBCLCs. 
 
I imagine this is all clear as mud to you right now.  What I often recommend to my clients is that you call your insurance company to clarify benefits and policies while you are pregnant, between 28 weeks-36 weeks of pregnancy, that way if you need the services once your baby is born, you can have peace of mind preparing for birth and breastfeeding.  If you can, get their responses in writing.  My next article will cover how to request coverage from your insurance company. 

 
Desiree Allison, IBCLC
602.903.0002

I am an Aetna contracted provider and am negotiating with several other insurance companies for contracts.  I have a passion to help mothers and babies thrive.  I have been an IBCLC for 3 years and have over 8years experience as a breastfeeding volunteer with an international organization.  Most importantly, I am a mother of three incredibly inquisitive and independent children.

Please leave us a comment - it will be moderated and posted. 
In an effort to keep the spam to a minimum, I am taking the time to moderate comments now.
 

Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonDisclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.



Humans Feeding Humans

Posted on August 5, 2013 at 9:29 AM Comments comments (2)
World Breastfeeding Week 2013 Blog Carnival - NursingFreedom.org and The San Diego Breastfeeding Center 

Welcome to the World Breastfeeding 2013 Blog Carnival cohosted by NursingFreedom.org and The San Diego Breastfeeding Center!

This post was written for inclusion in the WBW 2013 Blog Carnival. Our participants will be writing and sharing their stories about community support and normalizing breastfeeding all week long. Find more participating sites in the list at the bottom of this post or at the main carnival page.

***


Celebrating Each Mother's Journey: Not every breastfeeding relationship looks the same. There are mothers who exclusively breastfed, exclusively pumped, breastfed with supplementation, breastfed for three hours or three years, never breastfed but wanted to, or did some combination of these. The important thing is that each mother is supported and given accurate information. Today let's discuss how we can celebrate every breastfeeding relationship. 


We can celebrate every breastfeeding relationship by acknowledging the variety of ways that women can feed their babies.  As described in today’s topic prompt, there are more ways to feed an infant than breast to baby.   Besides breastfeeding, there are relationships where the MotherBaby, “exclusively pumped, breastfed with supplementation, breastfed for three hours or three years, never breastfed but wanted to, or did some combination of these.” 

In addition to those scenarios, there are also women who educated themselves and participated in human milk sharing, or maybe allowed a friend or relative to wet nurse.  These are all available options besides the two most commonly acknowledged and debated food delivery systems: exclusive breastfeeding and formula feeding.

As a childbirth educator, it is my honor and privilege to offer information about breastfeeding in our classes and to introduce our students to the wide world of breastfeeding support for their journey.  Although I am not a certified lactation consultant, I have been the ear for mamas on their path to feed their children with their own milk.  The mothers in our student base have run the gamut all of those options.  Due to the amount of support our mamas have, so far all the families have found a path to breastfeed for at least the first six months of infancy as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics.  I have heard their tears of disappointment, and wept with joy when they share the news that their baby finally latched.  We celebrate when they are no longer pumping and cleaning pump parts and bottle-feeding systems.

These MotherBabys succeed in their pursuit of a breastfeeding relationship because they do not feel judgment for their inability to exclusively breastfeed.  Instead, they are provided with a plethora of options to support them in their journey to feed their human babies human milk.  They are provided with lists of breastfeeding support groups in our area that offer information and camaraderie.  They are offered names of lactation consultants when they need one-on-one support.  Even if a MotherBaby does not live in a metropolitan area with face-to-face support options, the age of the internet has given rise to video resources and websites available 24/7 via the world wide web (see some of our student's favorite resources at the end of today's post). 

In order to celebrate the variety of ways that families feed their babies, I propose that we find some new ways to communicate about breastfeeding that are not so divisive.  In our eagerness to share the joy of breastfeeding, it is easy to forget that the questions we ask may unintentionally put people on the defensive. 

Instead of asking, “Are you breastfeeding,” with the implication that they should be, we can ask, “How are you feeding your baby?”  If the answer is not breastfeeding, then we can ask, “Did you want to breastfeed?”  If the answer is another “no,” we can share the benefits of skin-to-skin and eye contact when a baby is being bottle-fed, maybe let them know about babywearing, and then move on, making our best effort not to pass judgment.  We can also share information about milk sharing to open the door to the possibility, and offer to share more information in the future: “I don’t know if you knew that some families are choosing to supplement with human milk instead of formula.  If you ever want to know more about that, I would be happy to send you some resources so you can look into it.”

If the answer is something akin to “I tried and it hasn’t been working out for us”, we can follow up with “Would you let me help you find the resources to help you breastfeed?  Although it is natural, it is not always easy and there are many women who have needed help getting off to a good start.”  By asking gently, the door is open for us to share any and all information to help the MotherBaby develop the breastfeeding relationship that works for them.

We must also focus our ire on the lack of information about all the different ways to feed infants human milk where it originates.  Instead of pitting the breastfeeding camp against the formula feeding camp, we need to go back to the source of the challenge: the formula manufacturers.  



It is not in the formula companies best interest to have the majority of the population exclusively breastfeed, so the lie that formula is “as good as” breastmilk has persisted.  I am not anti-formula.  I know that formula is a great option to provide the necessary nutrients when there is no other option available.  However, the wholesale equality that has been attributed to formula has kept women and children from taking advantage of nature’s best nutrition simply because we are trusting.  We trust that our doctors would not withhold information, we trust the advertising campaigns, and we do not question the status quo.

So do celebrate breastfeeding in all its forms.  Commend the mother who is exclusively breastfeeding.  Praise the woman who exclusively pumped, because that is the mother of all commitments.  Support them women who breastfed with supplementation, and ask them what you can do to help them if they want to exclusively breastfeed.  Congratulate the woman who breastfed for three hours and educate her on how she can still achieve a breastfeeding-type bond with her child.  Cheer the woman who breastfed for three years, and encourage her to tell her story so that other families know it has been done and they are not alone.  Mourn with the woman never breastfed but wanted to, inform her that her past relationship does not dictate her future breastfeeding stories, and help her find the support groups to try breastfeeding again with her future children.  Applaud the human milk donors and the wet nurses.  Theirs is an ancient tradition that is coming out of the shadows of time and back into awareness. 

Last of all, we can celebrate by sharing a smile.  No matter how you see a woman feeding her child, smile at her because we are all sisters on the journey of motherhood.  Accept her, because in spite of different choices, we are all mothers doing the best we know how to do today.  At the end of the day, our children may be playmates, classmates, friends and lovers. 

Let’s set the tone for celebration and acceptance by living love, starting with the mothers who know of our sleep deprivation in the newborn phase, the tickle in our bellies when we get to share a smile with our baby, and the pure joy that we feel every time we look at the miracle that we loved so tenderly from their first moments on earth.  That really is something to celebrate.

Breastfeeding Support Groups:
La Leche League~ http://www.llli.org/
Hospital Support Groups – call your local hospital to see if they offer classes or support groups
 
How to find a Lactation Consultant:
Read THIS post that explains the different designations in lactation consultants.  Training can vary from a 16-40 hour course, with and without clinical hours, to IBCLC's who have the equivalent of a college degree in human lactation.

IBCLC:The gold standard in lactation care, these support people have the equivalent of a college degree in human lactation.  You can find an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant HERE.

Human Milk Sharing:
Eats on Feets~ http://www.eatsonfeets.org/
Human Milk 4 Human Babies~ http://hm4hb.net/

On-line resources:
BreastFeeding, Inc.: “aim is to empower parents by ensuring they receive the most up-to-date information to assist them with their breastfeeding baby. We strive to provide them this information through breastfeeding resources which include, but are not limited to, free information sheets, video clips, and articles.”
http://www.breastfeedinginc.ca/

KellyMom: “our goal is to provide support & evidence-based information on breastfeeding, sleep and parenting. I am the mother of three lovely children, and I am an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC).”
http://kellymom.com/

Stanford School of Medicine: Videos and articles about breastfeeding
http://newborns.stanford.edu/Breastfeeding/

Infant Risk Center: "The InfantRisk Center will be dedicated to providing up-to-date evidence-based information on the use of medications during pregnancy and breastfeeding." 
http://www.infantrisk.com

Please leave us a comment - it will be moderated and posted. 
*I think* that the amount of traffic you so generously generate has led to a lot of spam posting.  In an effort to keep the spam to a minimum, I am taking the time to moderate comments now.
 
Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonDisclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

More Posts From Nursing Freedom and San Diego Breastfeeding Coalition World Breastfeeding Week Blog Carnival:

August 5: Each Mother's Journey and Milk Sharing

  • An Unexpected Formula-Fed Attachment — Kyle (of JEDI Momster and) writing at Natural Parents Network, exclusively breastfed three healthy babies. So when she was pregnant with her fourth, she assumed she would have no breastfeeding troubles she could not overcome. Turns out, her fourth baby had his own ideas. Kyle shares her heartfelt thoughts on how she came to terms with the conclusion of her breastfeeding journey.
  • It Take a Village: Cross Nursing — Shannah at Breastfeeding Utahshares how cross-nursing helped her baby in their time of need, and how that experience inspired her to create a community of cross-nursing and milk-sharing women.
  • Random little influences and Large scale support communities lead to knowing better and doing better — amy at random mom shares how her ideas and successes involved with breastfeeding evolved with each of her children, how her first milk sharing experience completely floored her, and how small personal experiences combined with huge communities of online support were responsible for leading and educating her from point A to point D, and hopefully beyond.
  • Mikko's weaning story — After five years of breastfeeding, Lauren atHobo Mama shares how the nursing relationship with her firstborn came to a gentle end.
  • My Milk is Your Milk — Lola at What the Beep am I Doing? discusses her use of donor milk and hhow she paid the gift back to other families.
  • World Breastfeeding Week 2013 Blog Carnival - Celebrating Each Mother's Journey — Jenny at I'm a full-time mummy lists her experiences and journey as a breastfeeding mother.
  • Working Mom Nursing Twins — Sadia at How Do You Do It? breastfed her twin daughters breastfed for 7 months. They made it through premature birth and NICU stays, her return to full-time work, her husband's deployment to Iraq, and Baby J's nursing strike.
  • So, You Wanna Milkshare? — Milk banks, informed community sharing and friends, oh my! So many ways to share the milky love; That Mama Gretchen is sharing her experience with each.
  • Milk Siblings: One Mama's Milk Sharing Story (and Resources)Amber, guest posting at Code Name: Mama, shares how her views on milk sharing were influenced by her daughter receiving donor milk from a bank during a NICU stay, and how that inspired her to give her stash to a friend.
  • Humans Feeding Humans — Krystyna at Sweet Pea Births shares ideas on how we can celebrate all the different ways modern mommies feed their babies. While we are comfortable with the breastmilk-formula paradigm, she proposes that we expand our horizons and embrace all the different ways mamas feed their infants.
  • When Breastfeeding Doesn't Go As Planned — MandyE of Twin Trials and Triumphs shares the challenges she faced in feeding her premature twins. She's still learning to cope with things not having gone exactly as she'd always hoped.
  • Taking Back My Life By Giving Away My Milk — When Amanda Rose Adams's first child was born, he was tube fed, airlifted, ventilated, and nearly died twice. In the chaos of her son's survival, pumping breast milk was physically and mentally soothing for Amanda. Before long her freezer was literally overflowing with milk - then she started giving it away.
  • The Tortoise and the Hare — Nona's Nipples at The Touch of Lifediscusses why we care about breast milk and formula with everything inbetween.
  • Finding My Tribe of Women Through Milk Sharing — Mj, guest posting at San Diego Breastfeeding Center shares her journey breastfeeding with low milk supply and supplementing with donor milk using an at the breast supplemental nursing system. She shares the impact milk sharing has had on her life, her family, and how it saved her breastfeeding relationship.
  • Human Milk for Human Babies — Sam at Nelson's Nest shares her perspective on milk-sharing after an unexpected premature delivery left her pumping in the hopes of breastfeeding her son one day. Sam's milk was an amazing gift to the other preemie who received it, but the connection was a blessing in the donor mom's life too!
  • Sister, I Honor You — A mother feeding her baby is a triumph and should be honored, not criticized. Before you judge or propagate your own cause, go find your sister. A post by Racher: Mama, CSW, at The Touch of Life.
  • Every Breastfeeding Journey Is Different, Every One Is Special — No two stories are alike, evidenced by That Mama Gretchen's collaboration of a few dear mama's reflections on their breastfeeding highs, lows and in betweens.
  • A Pumping Mom's Journey — Shannah at Breastfeeding Utah shares about her journey pumping for her son, who was born at 29 weeks.

Tidbits from Peas & Pods

Posted on September 29, 2012 at 4:00 AM Comments comments (0)
We had the great pleasure of hosting some of our alumni mamas and their babies at our home for a "Peas & Pods" playdate today.  Although we have invited current students to join us since we started these gatherings last spring, we had our first student mama come to our group today.
 
She asked a great question and I wanted to share the answer with you.  It piggybacks on a recent post about The Baby Stuff, and I was quite surprised by the answer the mamas gave her since I had not really thought about it before.
 
Q: Tell me about breast pumps, bottles, pacifiers – what do I need to get?
 
A: (Paraphrasing the collective wisdom) ~ Wait until your baby arrives.  Take advantage of the freebies that come with the breast pump, or from the hospital take-home bag.  Although it is tempting to buy the “bargain” multi-packs, purchase bottles and pacifiers in single packs so that you can try one before you make the commitment to purchase more.  Each baby is unique, and if you have any questions about the right kind of bottle for your baby, you can ask a lactation consultant and they will steer you in the right direction.  We know it's hard to "not plan" as a pregnant mama because you want to have everything in order before your baby arrives...this is just one of those areas where it is best to wait because your baby is going to let you know what they like and need after they get here.
 
Bottles!  Isn’t this a breastfeeding advocate writing this post?!?
 
Yes – these mamas were talking about using bottles for expressed breastmilk.  The other item you can “try before you buy” is a breast pump.  You can rent a pump to try the style before you make the commitment to a brand.  I know the store where we teach (Modern Mommy Boutique) has at least two different brands, and you can rent them on a weekly time-frame.  A lot of mamas want to put that on their registry since a pump is a $$$ item.  Instead of requesting a specific brand that cannot be returned once it is opened, maybe you can request a gift card for the approximate cost of a pump .  This lets you purchase the best one for you after baby arrives and you have had the opportunity to try out some different brands.
 
The other thing that was interesting was that all of us that had used pacifiers or bottles had about the same number of “tries” before we settled on the best product for our baby.  All of us had tried three different products and usually the third one we tried was the one we and/or baby preferred.
 
Another gem that came from one of our mamas that work out of the home concerned making milk for a baby in a daycare situation.  She had heard this gem and wanted to pass it along to the other mamas that are getting ready to go back to outside jobs.  Whether you get a lunchtime break to go nurse, or if it’s at a drop-off or pick-up, linger in your child’s care room.  That way you get to breathe in the air that your child is going to be or has been breathing that day, and your body can get a head start on making anti-bodies for baby’s “formula”.  Isn’t that a neat idea?  I really enjoy learning something new.
 
The other thing we talked about today was all the options in cloth diapers.  Some of us use cloth all the time, other mamas use cloth on the weekends when they are home with baby.  There are so many options in cloth today – they are not your mom’s or your grandma’s cloth diapers that were secured with safety pins and covered with an air-tight and water proof plastic pant.  There are at least four different styles, lots of fun prints and colors to choose from…definitely something to look into and sign up for a class in your area.
 
We will be bringing you a blog post from a cloth diaper expert to answer the basic questions about cloth diapering (and maybe a fun contest) in the near future…stay tuned!
 
Have a great weekend!
 
Disclaimer: 


Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, Payson

The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.


 

Breastfeeding and The Law

Posted on September 21, 2012 at 12:56 PM Comments comments (1)
A look at breastfeeding laws in public and in the workplaceI got an alarming text from a student last week.  I won’t share the details since I haven’t asked permission.  What I can tell you is that it reminded me how little the general public and employers know about our breastfeeding and pumping “rights” as outlined in state and federal law. 
 
Since my passion for breastfeeding is second only to my passion for natural birth, I forget that I live in a vacuum of other BF fanatics.  Just because we know and discuss the laws amongst ourselves does not mean that we are doing a good job at educating the public.  Here is one attempt to rectify that.
 
If you live in Arizona, there are two statutes that protect your right to breastfeed in public.  One states that breastfeeding shall not be considered an indecent exposure.  The other one states that moms can breastfeed in any place that they are lawfully present.
 
Here are the statutes and the exact language:
 
A.R.S. 41-1443
A mother is entitled to breastfeed in any area of a public place or a place of public accommodation where the mother is otherwise lawfully present.
 
A.R.S. 13-1402
Indecent exposure does not include an act of breastfeeding by a mother.
 
While I am grateful for our laws, I found out when I was traveling this summer that our home state looks pretty measly compared to the protections afforded to women in other states.
 
Click here to see state breastfeeding laws across the United States.
 
So that is one area clarified:  If you live in Arizona or one of the other 45 states where nursing in public is protected, you can lawfully breastfeed in public.  If you live in Idaho, Michigan, South Dakota, Virginia or West Virginia you will find that your rights to breastfeed in public are not explicitly protected under your state law.  There are some great laws on the books in other states – you can get involved and make a difference for mamas in your home state.
 
The second area that pertains to breastfeeding and the law is pumping in the workplace.  Yes, you can!  And although we have yet to see what the whole law in action looks like, a golden nugget in the Affordable Care Act (2010) is that moms who want to pump at work now have a Federal Law that backs up and supports their choice.
 
One of the provisions in the ACA addressed the needs of moms who want/need to make a career outside the home and breastfeeding work for them.  Section 7 of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was amended to include a provision for mothers who want to express milk in the workplace.
 
Here are the highlights:
  • Employers are required to provide reasonable break time
  • Frequency is “as needed” by the nursing mother
  • A private, non-bathroom place for nursing mothers to express breast milk during the workday should be provided
  • The place is to be shielded from view and free from intrusion from coworkers and the public
  • Nursing mothers are to be accommodated for one year after the child’s birth
 
There are some exemptions for providing a dedicated space if a company is less than 50 employees, however, they must still allow you privacy and the time to express milk for baby.  If your state law is more inclusive and/or provides more protection than the federal law, then the state law prevails.
 
“My” La Leche League leader makes a great suggestion to the working out of the home moms that attend meetings.  She suggests that using a neutral word may make the discussion a little easier to have when you are reminding your boss that they need to follow the law.  Her idea is to  replace the word “breastfeeding” with the word “lactation” when discussing your needs with your supervisors. 
 
For an overview of workplace support under federal law, click here.
 
For a Fact Sheet you can share with your employer, click here.

 
Many moms have been able to resume their career outside of the home and still maintain an exclusive breastmilk relationship with their child.  As I listen to moms who have made the choice to pump after returning to work, I hear that the women who do so successfully have these things in common:
  • Partners support the choice by helping mom in the way that she wants and asks for help, and they appreciate the commitment.
  • They have a clear goal in mind and an intrinsic belief that breastmilk is the choice for their family.
  • They are part of a support system that affirms their choice, whether it’s other moms at work that are making the same choice or a support group, such as La Leche League.
 
Here are some links to help you make the most of your pumping sessions at work:
Milk Calculator – how much does baby need?

Making “the most” out of your pumping sessions

 
I will close by asking pumping moms to look into hand expression.  There are many videos and tutorials up on the internet.  It is a great way to finish the pumping sessions because  the breastmilk only vacuums out what is at the front of the breast.  By becoming proficient at hand expression, a mama can get more milk after the pumping session with the machine is over.

Here is one link - you need to register your email address to access.
 
Do you have any tips to share about pumping during office hours?  Please leave a comment – thank you!
 
Laws in action: A look at state laws along our road trip

Link List:
State Breastfeeding Laws
http://www.ncsl.org/issues-research/health/breastfeeding-state-laws.aspx

FLSA - Section 7 Information
http://www.usbreastfeeding.org/Workplace/WorkplaceSupport/WorkplaceSupportinHealthCareReform/tabid/175/Default.aspx

FLSA - Section 7 Fact Sheet
http://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/whdfs73.htm

Kelly Mom Milk Calculator
http://kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/pumping/milkcalc/

Making the Most of Pumping Sessions
http://bfmed.wordpress.com/2010/11/03/nicu-pearl-cover-the-containers-during-pumping-to-make-more-milk/
 
Hand expression video
http://newborns.stanford.edu/Breastfeeding/HandExpression.html

Disclaimer: 
Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonThe material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

 

In Their Own Words: Daniella

Posted on August 7, 2012 at 1:50 PM Comments comments (1)
This post was written as part of Sweet Pea Birth’s "In Their Own Words" series. For more info on the ITOW or if you want to participate, contact Krystyna Bowman: krystyna{at} sweetpeabirths {dot} com. Today's post is about persevering through breastfeeding challenges.  The breastfeeding ITOW series runs through the month of August. 
 
Daniella is the mother of a six-month old boy, Samuel. Aside from spending time with her two main men (her husband and baby), she likes to collect nail polish, watch cop dramas, and pin lots of things on Pinterest.  Today she shares the long journey her family took from exclusive pumping to exclusive breastfeeding…that is, until she goes back to work again as an elementary school teacher this fall.  Enjoy!
 
As cliché as it sounds, the day my son was born was the best day of my life.
 
 Even after the issues I had with my gall bladder, constantly worrying about my blood pressure, getting induced two weeks early because of my high blood pressure, and an emergency C-section, everything was worth it after hearing my son cry for the first time.
 
Even though he was born two weeks early, my son was perfectly healthy. As soon as we were reunited after recovery, I immediately stripped my gown off so we could do some skin-to-skin time. Soon after that he nursed for the first time. He nursed like a champ! He latched on perfectly and was eating every hour or so. We had a little trouble getting him to latch on my right side due to a flat nipple, but that was the only bump in the road.
 
The trouble started when he was two days old. Our night nurse and my husband took Samuel to get weighed and came back with bad news: He had lost too much weight and looked jaundiced. He weighed 5 lbs., 3 oz. at birth and had weighed in at 4 lbs., 6 oz.  Our nurse was worried about his coloring so the doctor ordered blood tests to make sure everything was okay. His bilirubin levels came back at a level of 14*, which worried the doctor because he was so teeny. She also recommended we supplement his feedings with formula since my milk hadn’t come in. The plan was to feed him to get his weight up as well as getting his bilirubin levels down. We also had to put him in a bili-bed for at least 24 hours.
 
I was heartbroken. I did not want to give my baby formula, yet I knew that he needed to eat in order to get his bilirubin levels down. I conceded, but felt terrible. I felt like it was my fault. I also knew that if he was in the bili-bed, I wouldn’t be able to nurse him on demand because he was in the nursery. At this point I was running on only a few hours of sleep, hated being in the hospital, and would do whatever it took to get my family to go home.
 
So we formula fed. Samuel didn’t seem to like the taste of the formula we were feeding him, which made me feel a little better. I didn’t try to nurse him the first few hours because no one said anything about it; they just talked about feeding him formula. By the grace of God, the nurse that came in on the next shift asked me about breast feeding.
 
“Are you nursing him?” she asked me when my husband and I walked in to feed him.
 
I told her that I was nursing him, but hadn’t yet since the night before when he was put into the bed.
 
“What? No, you need to give him your milk; it’s the best thing for him right now! It’s what he needs to get healthy and back into your room! Who’s your nurse? I’m going to call her and tell her to get you a pump so you can give him that instead”.
 
I went back to my room and was set up with a Medela Symphony breast pump. I was given a quick lesson on how to use it and started pumping.
 
My milk had come in (yay!) and I was pumping about .5 to 1 ounces every three hours. We fed Samuel my milk first, followed by formula. A couple of days later, he weighed 4 lbs., 11 oz., and had bilirubin levels of 7. We were finally allowed to go home, yay!!! Our pediatrician instructed us to continue pumping, give Samuel my milk first followed by a couple ounces of formula and we would evaluate what to do about supplementing after our appointment two days later.
 
At his follow up appointment Samuel weighed 5 lbs., 3 oz., and we were given the ok to stop supplementing with formula and to only feed him breast milk. The nurse practitioner even told me I could stop bottle-feeding him and nurse him exclusively. I was so happy, but inside I was absolutely terrified. What if he wasn’t eating enough? What if I couldn’t produce enough milk? What if he lost too much weight and had to go back to the hospital? I decided to keep pumping so I could keep track of how much he was eating.
 
Because our son was having trouble latching, he would get tired and frustrated at the breast which usually turned into a massive meltdown. I made an appointment with an IBCLC to get my latch checked and to get an expert’s opinion that I was doing this nursing thing right. I was confident that I would come out of the consultation a new mother. I was positive that I would leave and never have to feed my son using a bottle (at least until I went back to work!).
 
However, I left the consultation with some disheartening news: the Lactation Consultant (LC) thought that Samuel had a posterior tongue-tie which affected his ability to latch properly, which led to his frustration and the resulting meltdown. She gave me the name of a pediatrician who specialized in tongue-ties and urged me to meet with him to get confirmation about Samuel’s tongue.
 
I was a wreck. Why was this happening to me? All I wanted to do was nurse my son. It’s how women are supposed to feed their children, right? So why was this so damned hard?! I cried on the way home. My mom tried to comfort me, telling me that she only nursed me for 6 months, my sister for 3 months, and my brother for 2 weeks, and we all turned out fine. If I decided to stop nursing everything would be fine she insisted. Lots of people formula fed their children and no one would judge me for deciding to stop.
 
I talked to my husband about it when he got home from work. He told me the same thing my mom did. I told him how I couldn’t give up. I felt like a failure because I had to have a C-section, I wasn’t bonding with my son, I felt terrible all the time because my pain meds made me feel like crap. I wasn’t going to give up. Even if he couldn’t nurse, I would just continue to pump and bottle-feed him. I would NOT give my son formula if I had been blessed with a milk supply that provided way more than he needed.
 
We talked about going to see the pediatrician that the LC recommended to see if baby did in fact have a tongue-tie. My husband was against it. He agreed with our doctor: Samuel was just so small and had such a teeny mouth, surely he would grow bigger and nursing would become easy for him.
 
Over the next few months I continued to pump 8-10 times a day. It was exhausting. It seemed like all I did was pump, clean pump parts, feed my baby, change his diaper and rock him to sleep. Repeat, repeat, and repeat.  It was so tiring because I was home alone during the day. I remember counting down the hours until my husband would come home from work so he could help me, especially on those extra trying days. Now I knew why so many women who struggled in the first few months gave up trying to breastfeed their babies. I was too stubborn to give up. I was producing at least 5 ounces extra a day. If I would have struggled with my supply, it made sense to stop or supplement, but I felt like I had no excuse.
 
Pumping was so hard. Luckily my husband stepped up and helped however he could. When I would wake up every three hours in the first few weeks to pump, he would feed the baby so I could go back to sleep as soon as I was done. He encouraged me not to give up. Samuel was thriving and getting bigger!
 
I was jealous of a couple of women in my family who had babies around the same time as me. They were able to nurse easily with relatively no problems. I was so angry, why wouldn’t my baby nurse? What was wrong with him? What was wrong with me? Like I said, I’m really stubborn, so I wouldn’t give up. I was also sick of having people ask me why I was pumping.
 
“Why don’t you just nurse?” they asked. Ugh!!! If they only knew! My husband and family were extremely supportive. My parents and siblings would watch the baby when my husband was working and I had to pump. They didn’t mind if we couldn’t go out of the house for very long because I had to pump so often. They made the fact that I was exclusively pumping seem so natural. I also got support from a coworker who told me that she was so proud of me for not giving up (thanks for all of your kind words D.K.!!! They helped out so much more than you’ll ever know!!)
 
Eventually I was able to scale back on the number of times of the day I needed to pump. I also continued to seek out help. I met with an LC at our pediatrician’s office. She insisted that he had no tongue tie. Another IBCLC at a hospital said the same thing. Just keep putting him to the breast they insisted. He’ll eventually get the hang of it.
 
I tried to continue putting him to the breast, but it was a nightmare. Already used to the fast flow of a bottle nipple, he would get frustrated at trying to nurse. He would MELT DOWN. Trying to nurse him always ended in both of us sobbing. I actually thought a few times: I will never nurse my baby. I will be hooked up to a pump for the next year of my life.
 
When Samuel was about 6 weeks old, we met with another IBCLC. After witnessing a meltdown, she suggested taking a look in his mouth. She felt around and mentioned that she was positive that he had a posterior tongue-tie, albeit a very slight one. She recommended we see a pediatrician that specialized in tongue-ties to get him checked out. It was the same pediatrician that the first IBCLC recommended!
 
I made an appointment as soon as I could. My husband and parents warned me: Don’t get your hopes up. After 8 weeks of bottle-feeding, Samuel might not want to nurse. I tried not to get too excited. We met with Dr. Agarwal and sure enough, Samuel did have a tongue-tie! We got it fixed and as soon as I got home, I tried to nurse him and we had another epic meltdown. I cried and cried. I had put my son through all of that pain (I could hear him screaming in the waiting room) and he still couldn’t nurse. I kept trying over the next couple of weeks, but no luck. I resigned myself to the fact that if I wanted my son to get breast milk, my best friend (my pump!) and I would be hanging out for the next year.
 
Breastfeeding success at 12-weeks oldOne day, when he was about 12 weeks old (right before I went back to work of course) Samuel started fussing when he was in my arms. I tried to comfort him but nothing would work. Soon he started rooting at my chest, something he hadn’t done since he was in the hospital. I mentioned it to my husband. He suggested I try to nurse him. It couldn’t hurt, right?
 
I got set up and put him to my breast, bracing myself for the screams. He nuzzled my breast, opened his mouth, and latched on. He started to suckle and I started to count down from ten, waiting for him to pop off and start crying. He never did. He stayed on and nursed for about ten minutes. I couldn’t believe it! I started crying, I was so happy. I made my husband take a picture and sent it to my sister and cousin/Bradley™ instructor, the two people besides my husband who were my biggest supporters.
 
A few minutes after he was done, he latched on again and nursed for a bit longer. It had finally clicked!
 
Since I had to go back to work, I continued to pump and bottle feed. I occasionally nursed him, but decided to wait until I was on break to put the bottles away.
 
I met with the first IBCLC that I saw way back when I had a tiny newborn. I wanted to make sure that he had a good latch and was actually taking something in before I stopped pumping for good. She observed that he had a great latch, took in about three ounces in five minutes and told me to stash the pump!
 
The next day I only nursed him and never looked back. Samuel nurses anywhere from 6-10 times a day and is getting so big! The first few days were messy and hard, but you would never guess that we had trouble nursing at first.
 
Instead of pumping every few hours, I now spend my days playing with my newly mobile baby who enjoys napping with my breast in his mouth. I don’t complain though, my favorite thing to do is snuggle with him on the couch while he sleeps/eats. We have a new bond that I treasure more than anything else.
 
I continue to pump once a day. I don’t have to, but I am scared that this will all change and I won’t have anything to give him. I’ve also been able to donate milk to a couple of women. I want to continue to do this, so I’ve created a mini stash in our freezer.
 
My journey from exclusively pumping to exclusively nursing has been long and tiring. I would do it all over in a heartbeat though. It has taught me to be strong and to fight for what I want. The feeling of knowing that your child is thriving because of something that your body is creating is one of the best in the world. It’s so empowering! Along my journey I have also become somewhat of a “gentle lactivist”. My husband playfully teases me whenever I have some new tidbit about women and breastfeeding to tell him. He is my biggest supporter though, and I know he is so proud of me. He is also incredibly selfless. I know that the opportunity to feed our son was something he treasured, and I am so thankful that he set his feelings aside in order for Samuel and I to try and nurse exclusively.
 
To any woman who is having trouble nursing: Don’t give up! If you feel strongly about not giving your child formula, consider exclusively pumping. I had never heard about this feeding option until I started. There is so much support out there, you’d be surprised!
 
To the woman who wants to be able to stop pumping and just nurse her baby: Don’t give up! I truly believe that if you keep trying, it will click. If not, no biggie. Any breast milk is better than no breast milk at all. Please don’t be afraid to ask for help. I know for a fact that if I didn’t have the support that I did, I would have given up in those early weeks. I don’t think anyone would have blamed me for stopping.
 
I want to end this post and thank my family for all of their support. It meant everything to me.
 
I also want to thank Samuel for being the calmest baby when I dragged him all over town trying to find a solution to all of this.
 
To my cousin Krystyna, thank you for being someone who I look up to. I had never seen anyone in our family nurse their children, and you did it so fearlessly. I will never forget the first time I saw you nurse in front of our giant family and act like it was no big deal. You have taught me to parent how I want to and not care what other people have to say.
 
Lastly, I want to say thanks to my husband. Thank you so much for never doubting me or pressuring me to do something I didn’t want to do. Without your support I never would have made it this far. Thank you for encouraging me to keep trying, even though nursing seemed to be going nowhere and for comforting me when I cried. You are an incredible father and husband. I know it hurts you when Samuel cries for me and wants me to comfort (nurse) him, yet you graciously give him to me because you know it’s what your son needs right now. You are my rock and I love you so much!
 
 
Disclaimer: 
Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonThe material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided. 
This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

 

Nursing Under Special Circumstances

Posted on July 29, 2012 at 9:52 PM Comments comments (1)
"This post was written as part of The Breastfeeding Cafe's Blog Carnival. For more info on the Breastfeeding Cafe, go to www.breastfeedingcafe.wordpress.com. For more info on the Carnival or if you want to participate, contact Timbra Wiist landslidephotography {at} hotmail {dot} com. Today's post is about nursing in special circumstances. Please read the other blogs in today's carnival listed in the comments section at www.breastfeedingcafe.wordpress.com The Carnival runs July 16th through the 31st!" 

Today’s Prompt: Have you nursed in special circumstances? Did you feel supported or like you were paving your own path? If your circumstance included a lot of medical procedures and staff, did you get interesting, strange or just BAD advice from medical staff? Family members? Or did you have support? Where would you encourage moms to go if they were in a similar situation?   

Day 4
Day 4
Half the tubes have already been taken out. I could not bring myself to take a picture when he was attached to all the machines and IV's.
Day 5
Day 5
Nurses are checking out his meds and lines at shift change.
Day 5
Day 5
Giving baby Bruss a little massage to let him know I was there.
The special circumstances we faced only lasted a few days:   
Our son Bruss contracted RSV when he was three months old.  We got a helicopter ride from Payson Regional Medical Center down to Phoenix Children’s Hospital.  His right lung had collapsed, he was intubated and he had two chest tubes poking into his right side to release the pressure in his chest cavity from the oxygen he was receiving.    

By the time we landed in Phoenix, his oxygen level had dropped to 20%.  I was a bystander as the pediatric EMT’s and the pilot evaluated taking extreme measures right there in the elevator, or making a run for the emergency room.  They decided to make the run for the emergency room.  The three of them moved a lot faster together than I could on my own.  I will never forget that sinking feeling as they ran away from me, wondering if our child would be dead or alive the next time I saw him.  Nightmare.  Still makes me tear up as I write those words.   

Happy ending – between the amazing care we received from doctors and ER staff in Payson, and the staff in the ER at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, they saved his life.  Once he was stabilized in the ER at the children's hospital, we were moved to a room in their Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU).  Our son needed to be fed through a feeding tube since he was completely sedated, and at the time, the go-to hospital solution was formula.  I was utterly opposed to the idea – not my exclusively breastfed child!  I wanted to do breastmilk only – we compromised by using my breastmilk as the major component, and they added some formula to each feeding “for calories”.   

We requested and got a hospital grade pump for our room.  I pumped dutifully every three to four hours to mimic our feeding pattern.  I would say the staff was beyond supportive.  They brought me the supplies we needed.  They helped keep the pumping area and supplies sterile.  They even went out of their way to encourage me and praise me for making the effort to feed our son breastmilk.  It surprised me to hear that very few mothers went this route – most of the babies in the PICU were formula fed without question.   

The staff started to notice  and comment on the difference.  Bruss gained weight while he was there.  He made incredible progress – many of them commented how quickly he was recovering in relation to the severity of what he had to overcome.  We were also told he was making more rapid improvement than RSV babies usually made.  Several of the nurses wondered if the breast milk was making the difference.   

My husband supported the choice to use breastmilk because he believes in the benefits of breastfeeding for Mom and Baby.  He thought it was great that we were able to do it in the hospital.  He whole-heartedly believed that his recovery was a result of our choice to give him breastmilk in the feeding tube.  He even remembers that Bruss gained weight when we there!   

I know that the breastmilk made the difference.  By the fourth day in the hospital, the lack of sleep and the stress were starting to get to me.  My production started to tank.  Luckily, we had a stash of frozen milk at home that my husband brought to the hospital.  He encouraged me to take a break from the pump and use our frozen milk instead of fretting over my milk supply.   

Once again, the hospital nurses were encouraging.  One of them was also a lactation consultant when she wasn’t wearing her PICU nurse hat.  She took the time to explain that given the lack of sleep and the stress of our son’s illness, it was not uncommon for milk supply to wane.  She assured me that once we got home and started nursing again, my supply would be very likely to increase again to meet his needs.   

Thankfully, on Day 5 they removed the last of the tubes and he was able to nurse.  I was scared to nurse him in case he rejected me.  I talked one of the nurses into bottle-feeding him to see if he still knew how to suck.  He did!  He devoured that bottle!   

The next time he was hungry, I took a deep breath and put him to the breast.  I cried with joy as my son and I found each other again.  Mama joyfully feeding her baby.  Baby nursing as if he hadn’t been in a crib attached to tubes for the last five days.   

What I have learned since then: you can say no to anything in the hospital.  It is your body and/or your baby and it is up to you to decide what care providers can and cannot do, no matter how the staff words their wishes for your care.  If I had to do it again, I would ask them to allow him to be exclusively breastfed until he showed signs that he was no longer thriving.  If he started losing weight by being exclusively breastfed, then I would consent to adding formula to his feeding tube.  If he maintained the same weight or gained weight, he could show it was okay to stay formula free.   

If another mom finds herself in a similar situation, with her child being in an intensive care setting, I would suggest that she surround herself with support.  Spouse, partner, care team, prayer.  If someone is not on board with her choice to breastfeed in spite of the circumstances, I would ask her if she was comfortable asking for a new care team.   

I would also encourage them to get lots of rest, meditate on the food they were making for the baby when they were pumping (talking to myself did help), covering the tubes and collection bottles with a blanket to take the focus off the ounces and just let the body work (a new tidbit I learned recently), and to research different galactagogues and consider giving them a try in order to keep supply up in the face of sleep deprivation and stress.   

We are blessed that our special circumstance had a happy ending.  One more anecdote that testifies to the wonderful healing power of the unique food we make for our unique species. 

Disclaimer:  
Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, Payson  The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  
This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®. 

Letter from your Breastmilk Bottle-Fed Baby

Posted on March 20, 2012 at 9:22 PM Comments comments (5)
The Bradley Method® classes taught in Arizona: Chandler, Ahwatukee, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, ScottsdaleToday’s post is short and to the point.  This letter was inspired by four strong mamas that have come through our classes recently.  They are having the type of breastfeeding complications that can very understandably make people give up on breastfeeding…for their specific stories check back on Friday. 

They have persevered through some incredibly tough breastfeeding situations and they have raised my level of amazement in human nature.  It’s easy to make the commitment to breastfeed when it works – it is another thing entirely to feed your baby breastmilk via pumps and bottles, and keep it up for weeks and weeks, not knowing if this is going to be your “new normal”.
 
I also want to put my Bradley Method® teacher hat on and state each family needs to evaluate their situation and decide which path is right for them.  This is not a judgment on parents who choose to formula-feed – they have their reasons and that decision is right for them.  My goal with this post is to encourage the families who want to breastfeed because that is the choice they want for their family, and let them know that other people have been in a tough place and made the choice work for them.
 
To our incredible students, here what I imagine your baby would like to say to you:
 
Dear Mommy,
 
Thank you for giving me your breastmilk.  It means so much to me that I am growing and thriving thanks to that warm, white, ever-so-yummy liquid perfection from your body to mine.
 
I am so grateful that you are pumping to feed me.  My tummy likes the texture.  My gut likes the way it’s digested.  My immune system appreciates the extra boost.  My brain likes the way it gets to grow.  My heart likes the way it makes me feel.
 
I know I fuss when I am at the breast sometimes, and I am sorry I am giving you a mixed signal.  I love it when you hold me close.  I love the warmth of your breast.  I love the smell of your skin.  I am just as frustrated as you are that we cannot seem to be “doing the dance” in sync right now.
 
I know it must be exasperating to take me to one appointment after another and not get the answers you need to hear.  I appreciate that you take the time to dress me up and take me out anyway – I know you believe in us.  I trust that you will persist until we find the answers that we need to nurse together the way we both want to.  I won’t give up on you.  Please don’t give up on me.

I also know you are working hard - you don't get to fall asleep right after you feed me.  You have to wash and sterilize and set up for the next time you are going to pump.  I know you are tired and still you persist.
 
Please continue to pump to feed me.  And even though I can’t imagine how devastating it is to know it’s not enough to nourish me, please, please, keep putting me to the breast.  Even though you don’t feel like it’s getting us anywhere, I treasure that extra closeness and the time next to your sweet skin.
 
The Bradley Method® classes taught in Arizona: Chandler, Ahwatukee, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, ScottsdaleI love you mommy.  I am so grateful you were chosen to be my mamma.  I will never be able to thank you enough for persisting through this rough patch to give me my unique milk and offer me the opportunity to receive nature’s perfect gift – the milk you are making just for me.
 
With much love and appreciation,
Your Sweet Pea


Disclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

Breast Care 101

Posted on December 23, 2011 at 3:30 AM Comments comments (0)
We have lots of new mommies in the queue, so I thought I would share some of the great products available for milkin' mammas.  I picked four categories, and with the help of Talisha Heiden, I have product descriptions and some informational videos for you.

Galactagogues
As I mentioned in my newbie's post, it is important that mom's get help within the first three weeks of their current breastfeeding relationship if they have any doubts or are concerned about their milk supply.
In this video, Talisha shares her knowledge of the products she carries to help new mother's increase their milk supply.




Breastfeeding cookie available at Modern Mommy Boutique, site of classes for Krystyna and Bruss Bowman, AAHCCShe also carries a breastfeeding cookie.  As she told me today, at 230 calories a pop, it's not the most calorie-conscious way to increase your milk supply, nor would she suggest it instead of a supplement.  It is however, an option for a snack if you are a nursing mom.  We do tell Coaches in our classes to get mom a tall glass of water and a snack whenever Mom sits down to nurse.  This product has several ingredients that support milk production, making it a good snack choice.


Therapy Pillows
One of the most common words people associate or know in regards to breastfeeding is "engorgement".  When milk comes in after 2-7 days of making colostrum, a mother's breasts will swell as they fill with milk.  If you are producing a regular amount of milk or an oversupply, you are likely to experience some level of engorgement.  This can be uncomfortable and painful.

Both brands of therapy pillows are filled with flax seeds and can provide warming or cooling relief with an all natural, gel-free product. The pillows can be heated in the microwave or cooled in the freezer to provide warming or cooling relief from the common discomforts of breastfeeding.

A warm pillow opens clogged ducts and increases milk production.  The warm, moist heat encourages milk flow, maintains open milk ducts to prevent clogged ducts, promotes let-down and it could comfort the symptoms of infection or mastitis.  

Therapeutic cooling soothes sore new mama nipples and breasts.  You can store them in the freezer and wear them inside your bra between feedings to help reduce the swelling and tenderness of engorgement.  Since they are made to last, you can use them as you complete your breastfeeding relationship to comfort breasts during weaning.

Therapy Pillows
Therapy Pillows
by bamboobies
Therapy Pillows
Therapy Pillows
by Earth Mama Angel Baby
As you can see, the bamboobies product covers the nipple, whereas the Earth Mama Angel Baby product fits around the areola.  The right product for you will depend on which of your nursing parts are sore and need relief.

Reusable Nursing Pads
We suggest that our Bradley Method® students do their research if they decide to use a nursing pad.  If they think they want to use nursing pads, we suggest they take care to choose a product that prevents leaks from showing through their clothing while keeping the nipple area dry.  Moisture in the area can keep a sore nipple from healing and it can also grow bacteria - yuck.

Talisha offers her description of her favorite nursing pads - both of which she sells in her store.  In the product gallery below, you can also see two more offerings.  She does offer a variety because each mom is unique - what feels good to mom is an individual choice.

All of the products shown here are washable and reusable - modern mommies take care to use earth-friendly products :)

Nursing Pads
Nursing Pads
by bamboobies
Nursing Pads
Nursing Pads
by Epibi
Nursing Pads
Nursing Pads
by La Leche League Int'l
Nursing Pads
Nursing Pads
Lily Padz

Nipple Cream
This falls under the "must-haves" on Talisha's breastfeeding survival list.  She is especially fond of the Motherlove product since it made a big difference in the nursing relationship with her firstborn.  A good nipple cream will quickly relieve the discomfort of sore, cracked nursing nipples. Look for a product made from ingredients that are safe for ingestion, so it does not need to be washed off prior to breastfeeding baby.  The Motherlove product she carries fits this description.

Motherlove Nipple Cream available at Modern Mommy Boutique, site of classes for Krystyna and Bruss Bowman, AAHCC

As you can see, Talisha is a wealth of information when it comes to establishing and maintaining a mutually enjoyable and beneficial nursing relationship.  The products shown today are just the tip of the iceberg.  She is a working mama who made the breastfeeding relationship work.  Her experience drives her product line.  She carries a full compliment of breastfeeding supplies and accessories in her store: nursing teas, nursing cookies, nursing covers, breast pumps, milk storage supplies, bottle-feeding equipment and more. 

In addition to speaking with Talisha, you can attend the free Breastfeeding Support group on Monday mornings that is facilitated by Debbie Gillespie, IBCLC, RLC, or attend Debbie's class that is offered the first Saturday of every month.  Talisha and Debbie make a great team for nursing moms that are looking for answers!  If you can't stop in to the store and see one or both of them, you can always call and reach them on the phone (480-857-7187). 

This season, give yourself the gift of knowledge...there is no such thing as a dumb question when it comes to learning how to feed your child the way you want to feed them.  There is no shame in needing or wanting to take advantage of this tremendous resource.  You will be glad you did, and baby will thank you later when they are fed, happy and sleeping peacefully.

Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas to all!


Modern Mommy Boutique
3355 W. Chandler Blvd, #3
Chandler, AZ  85226

480.857.7187










Disclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation. This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.  



Now enrolling for our
Spring Series
March 5, 2012 to
May 21, 2012  

For more information
or to register,
please call us at
602-684-6567
or email us at


MapQuest Terms and Conditions Maps/Directions are informational only. User assumes all risk of use. MapQuest, Vistaprint, and their suppliers make no representations or warranties about content, road conditions, route usability, or speed.

Choosing a Breast Pump and Its Parts

Posted on October 28, 2011 at 2:28 PM Comments comments (0)
Breastfeeding 101 Series

Welcome to this month’s post from Debbie Gillespie, IBCLC, RLC.  You can find her at Modern Mommy Boutique on Monday mornings at 10:00 am for a FREE Breastfeeding Support Group, and she will also be featured here on the fourth Friday of every month.  Please see the end of the post for Debbie's contact information if you are interested in reaching her for more information, or to find registration information for her Breastfeeding 101 Class offered on the 2nd Saturday of the month (October 8, 2011).
 
To read Debbie’s previous posts, please click on the “Breastfeeding 101” link on the left side of the page.

Baby is coming soon and you find yourself standing in the breastfeeding products section of the giant baby store.  Should you buy a pump now or wait?  Which pump should you put on your registry?  What’s the difference between the $60 pump from one company and the $350 pump from another company?  What should you look for in a pump anyway?

Buying a substandard pump or using the wrong pump for the job can jeopardize mom's milk supply or even damage mom's breast tissue, and don’t expect the pimply-faced clerk to steer you in the right direction on this decision.  What’s worse, if you do happen to pick the wrong pump but don’t realize it until you already opened the package, you aren’t able to return it like you could a pair of shoes.  Following are some guidelines to picking the right pump for the job.

"Do I need a breast pump if I’m going to breastfeed?" 
Some women would say that a pump is absolutely essential to breastfeeding success.  Other women point out that mothers have been breastfeeding their babies for centuries without ever using a breast pump.  The United States has the highest number of pumping moms in the world because our maternity leave policies require mothers to return to work so quickly, compared with other countries.  Fortunately breast pump design has come a very long way in the past 30 years, and pumping is now more comfortable and efficient than ever before.  If you need to express milk from your breasts for any reason – separation, baby won’t latch, problems breastfeeding – a breast pump can be your best friend, especially if you will need more than the occasional bottle.

"When should I buy a breast pump?" 
Some women want to have a pump ready to go before baby is born, in case they want to pump to relieve engorgement in the early days, express milk for separation or “emergency milk” for the freezer, or because they plan to return to work soon after baby is born.  Other moms prefer waiting until baby is born to be sure they choose the right pump for the job, or even to be sure that they are going to breastfeed long enough to need a pump in the first place.  If you do get a pump before baby is born, remember that pumping prior to baby’s birth can induce labor, so set aside your new toy until baby is safely on the outside.

All brands are not created equally. 
Cheaper pumps may look appealing, especially if you are concerned about all the other expenses that come with a baby.  The problem with the cheaper pumps is that they tend to break down unexpectedly, may not even be effective, can even cause tissue damage, and don’t offer a variety of sizes of parts to fit each mother’s anatomy.  Any money saved by purchasing one of these pumps is going to be wasted on buying another pump after that one breaks, or – even worse – the many expenses of formula after your milk supply has crashed.  The only two brands that are reliable, efficient, and versatile are Ameda and Medela; steer clear of other brands.

"I’m staying home full-time with my baby." 
If you’re only planning to need one or two bottles a week, a manual pump like the Ameda One Hand pump or Medela’s Harmony will fit the bill.  Any fancier pump is a nice luxury but not essential.

"I’m going to be working part-time, a few days a week." 
A manual pump may work if separation is only going to be for just a few feedings per week.  A safer option might be an electric pump that only pumps one breast at a time, like Medela’s Swing pump.  This handy little pump, about the size of a donut, can even clip onto mom’s belt for portable use.  It would be nice for this mom to have a pump that expresses both breasts at the same time, but not absolutely required in most cases.

"I’m going to be working full-time, plus commute." 
A pump that will allow you to pump both breasts at the same time is essential with this level of separation, to make pumping fast and efficient, and to maintain milk supply while away from baby.  Medela’s Pump in Style Advanced or Freestyle, or Ameda’s Purely Yours Ultra will do well.  These pumps are designed for use once breastfeeding is going well, mom's milk supply is well established, and baby is nursing well at least half the time (four+ times a day).  If a mom finds that she is pumping more than breastfeeding, I would recommend upgrading to the hospital-grade pump to protect her supply.  FYI both the Ameda and Medela pumps offer an A/C adapter so mom can pump during her commutes to save time and boost milk supply.

"My baby was born early and is now in the NICU."
If baby is not latching at all (in the NICU, for example) or is not breastfeeding strongly immediately after birth, it's important to rent a hospital grade pump to do baby's job of establishing milk supply.  Other pumps do remove milk, but they also leave milk behind and can’t stimulate mom’s milk supply in place of baby.  A good double electric breast pump can run $200-$350 to purchase; a hospital grade breast pump costs about $1,500-$2,000 to purchase.  The first few weeks after baby is born are most critical to a good milk supply for the whole time you’re breastfeeding, so don’t gamble your milk supply on trying to use your store-bought pump to establish milk supply.  It’s like trying to ride a scooter from Phoenix to New York: it’s not impossible to be successful, but it’s not very likely.

Which brand of pump should I rent? 
Hospital grade pumps come in Medela and Ameda brands.  Moms tend to rent whatever they used in the hospital since they already have the parts and are comfortable with the pump itself.  All of the East Valley hospitals but Mercy Gilbert and Chandler use the Medela Symphony in the hospital; Mercy Gilbert and Chandler use the Ameda Elite pump.

Where can I rent a pump? 
Chandler and Mercy Gilbert hospitals do not rent any pumps.  Modern Mommy Boutique (www.ModernMommyBoutique.com), conveniently located in front of Chandler Mall, rents both Medela and Ameda pumps for excellent prices.  Banner hospitals rent pumps, making it convenient to come home with the same kind of pump used in the hospital.  Hospitals tend to run out of pumps to rent, so have a back-up source lined up if this happens.  Two local companies offer free pick-up and delivery: Anything for Baby (www.anythingforbaby.com) and Serenity Feeding (www.SerenityFeeding.com).

Does one size fit all? 
Pump parts come in different sizes because mommies’ nipples come in different sizes.  The part that goes against the breast is called the flange and looks like a funnel.  Flange fittings are important to mom's pumping success and comfort, but I see many poorly fitted flanges.  Unfortunately you can't just "eyeball" the mom's nipple size and choose a flange, because many women's nipples usually swell during pumping.  A fitting should include pumping for at least five minutes before deciding on a flange size; flange size has everything to do with the nipple and nothing to do with the areola or breast size, and rarely changes between babies.  Also, a woman could very easily use one size on one breast and one size on the other.  I often do flange fittings at my consultations, and urge moms to bring their pumps when we meet for consultations to be sure that they are using the right size parts.

Is there anything that can make pumping easier? 
Yes!  A dab of olive oil on the inside of the flange helps eliminate any friction before milk flows.  Fully adjustable pumping bands can hold the parts in place so that mom can pump hands-free.  She can use her computer, read a book, talk on the phone, eat lunch...and allow her body to let the milk flow.  The pumping band holds the flanges in place comfortably and securely, so mom doesn’t have to worry about using too much pressure on the flanges.  The pumping band also provides some coverage for modest pumping.  Some moms even pump their milk while commuting to and from work using the pumping band, using the A/C adapter available on some models.  A nursing shawl can provide an added layer of privacy.  Other things that can improve pumping include photos or audio files of your baby, massaging the breasts before and during pumping, and smelling something your baby has worn.

"I found this pump on Ebay…" 
A good quality breast pump is going to cost a few hundred dollars so it’s very tempting to borrow a used pump from a neighbor, or pick one up at a garage sale or off of Ebay.  You may think you only need to buy new tubing and pieces to the pump, but there is no way to sterilize the pump’s motor and it may be growing a jungle.  Also, even high quality breast pumps are going to eventually die, and you don’t know how many hours a second-hand pump has worked, or how long it will continue to work before it leaves you stranded.  Ask for one at your baby shower, put together gift cards, return baby shower gifts you really didn’t need…a new pump just for you is a wise investment.

Parenthood is a whole new world, and breastfeeding is just one neighborhood of that new world.  If you have any questions about anything before, during or after baby is born, contact an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC).  It’s better to ask than to worry and wonder.  The best thing you can do is enjoy your baby.

To read Debbie’s previous posts, please click on the “Breastfeeding 101” link on the left side of the page.
 
With questions about this post, or to contact Debbie for a consultation:
Debbie Gillespie, IBCLC, RLC
Registered with the International Board of
Lactation Consultant Examiners
(480) 786-0431
 
Breastfeeding 101 Class
Join Debbie for a 90-minute comprehensive breastfeeding class once a month (2nd Saturday - 11:00 am) at Modern Mommy Boutique for only $10/couple.
Call Modern Mommy Boutique for registration: 480-857-7187
3355 W. Chandler Blvd #3, Chandler, AZ 85226 
 
Disclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.  It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation. This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.



New class starting
December 5, 2011
for families with due dates around or after
February 20, 2012

Call 602-684-6567
or email us at
for more information