“A midwife walked up the bed, tutted at me and told me I was feeding her all wrong. Five minutes later another one came in and told me the opposite!”
As healthcare professionals, we know that new parents get confused and frustrated by contradictory advice around baby feeding (and everything else!) To combat this, midwives and health visitors have been told to tell each mother exactly the same thing, to “sing from the same hymn sheet.”
The problem is…it doesn’t work. It stands to reason. All mothers and babies are unique. Breasts are different sizes, shapes and textures. Nipples may hang high or low, point in different directions, protrude or not. Babies vary in size, the way their mouth and tongue works, how they are feeling after the birth, their health and physiology. Both mother and baby may have some constraints after a challenging, instrumental or caesarean birth. While there are some general guiding principles, it can take a skilled and experienced eye to figure out which particular positions and techniques for feeding might help them best.
In truth, breastfeeding support is a skill that takes qualification and experience. Midwives are given very little training in it, and doctors even less so. It is time to devote the resources necessary to help every mother and baby along their breastfeeding journey.
Please contact me if you would like some experienced, tailored help for you and your little one.