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mom to be Archives - Lactation Link

Do I need a breastmilk freezer stash?

By | Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding support, breastfeeding tips, Uncategorized
do i need a breastmilk freezer stash? via lactationlink.com

{Simple Wishes Supermom Bra} Use code LLINK for 20% off!

 

Hi mamas! I’m Kristin Gourley, an IBCLC and mome of 5. I’m here to answer some concerns about breastmilk freezer stashes. Enjoy!

If you spend any time on an internet breastfeeding support group, you’ll see at least a few mentions of a breastmilk freezer stash.  If you aren’t familiar with the term, it’s a way some moms refer to the bags, sometimes hundreds of ounces, of breastmilk in their freezer.  

There are lots of ways women end up with freezer stashes, but are they necessary?  Do you need a freezer stash of any size to be successful at meeting your breastfeeding goals?

Having your breastmilk available in the freezer at all times is not a necessity to be successful at breastfeeding—but many families have circumstances that make it very convenient to pull milk out from the freezer to feed baby.

do i need a breastmilk freezer stash? via lactationlink.com

Common reasons moms might consider a freezer stash:

  1. You are returning to work.
  2. You have a premature or sick baby.
  3. You pump more than your baby needs when you’re at work.
  4. You want a date night or vacation away from baby.

If you don’t foresee yourself leaving your baby for more than an hour or two, you may not need a freezer stash at all!  Many mothers, throughout the world and for millennia, have successfully and exclusively breastfed their children without pumping or storing a single ounce.  Watching your baby’s feeding cues and bringing baby to breast whenever he or she wants is the best way to meet your breastfeeding goals, but we are glad we have pumps now to provide more options for moms!

There are lots of ways women end up with freezer stashes, but are they necessary? Do you need a freezer stash of any size to be successful at meeting your breastfeeding goals?

If you have more questions about pumping or storing milk, like how to get the most milk in a pumping session or how long your milk can be stored in the fridge or freezer before going bad, check out our Pumping and Storing video class.  It has everything you need to know to pump and store your milk!

Thanks for stopping by,

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Kristin Gourley, IBCLC

5 ways family and friends can support a new mom

By | Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding support, breastfeeding tips, community breastfeeding support

The village really seems to mobilize after a baby is born! After birth, mom needs to focus on healing and bonding with baby. In my video classes, moms write down their breastfeeding goals. They also write down two people they know they can turn to for breastfeeding support when they need it.  Family and friends can help reduce stress and provide support in many ways.

  1. Learn how family and friends can give a new mom the support she needs after giving birth so she can focus on bonding and breastfeeding.Bringing meals. Coordinate with family and friends to create a meal train for the family for several days or weeks. Another option is a sending them a meal delivery service to cut down on time spent planning and purchasing food.
  2. Housekeeping. The last thing Mom should be worrying about is housework when she’s bringing home a newborn (whether its her first or fifth!).  Mom’s attention should be kept on trying to rest, breastfeed, and bond with baby. Family and friends can be so helpful by helping out with a few chores around the house.   If you aren’t close by, you can send a gift certificate for a cleaning or laundry service.
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  3. Healthy snacks. If you aren’t close by, sending mom a box of Milkful lactation bars can be super helpful! They are delicious and a healthy, fast snack for mom. Use code LLINK for 15% off!
  4. Make her a breastfeeding basket. While breastfeeding, it’s nice to everything you need within arms reach. A bottle of water, snacks, an extra phone charger, nipple cream and good nursing pads like Bamboobies are some ideas of what to include. (Use code LLINK20 for 20% off Bamboobies!)
  5. Help with older children. If the mom has older kids, this is a great time for playdates so mom can rest with baby. Bringing over kid-friendly snacks and meals is also helpful.
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 What did your family and friends do that helped support you breastfeed and recover after birth? Share in the comments.

Related articles from Lactation Link:

5 Ways Grandparents can support breastfeeding

5 Ways partners can support breastfeeding

How to create a community of support for breastfeeding

 

I’ve created a free e-mail course to help you get breastfeeding started on the right foot! Click the image below for more info.

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Thanks for stopping by,

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Lindsey Shipley, RN, IBCLC

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Infant Loss Awareness Month

By | Breastfeeding, motherhood

This month during Infant Loss Awareness month, we wish to show love and compassion for the women and families who have had the heart-wrenching experience of infant loss.  We send our love and light to all of you who have experienced this – in all of its forms. We see you, we love you. With the personal stories that are shared today, we hope you feel some solidarity and support in your experience.


Emily’s Story

14812900_10154735455613274_1764331127_oMiscarriage is hard. For me, miscarrying the first time vs the fourth time was just as hard. I question over and over again if I did something wrong that caused it, or if there was something I could go back and change to keep it from happening. To help me cope with miscarrying, I found myself reading blog posts and forums about other women’s experiences with miscarriage. I also found that journaling about my experience and feelings was really therapeutic and it also helped for when someone wanted to talk about it, I had already tried to make sense of my over-abundance of emotions on paper.
After I miscarried my first, a family friend who was an OBGYN said to me, “Oh don’t worry about it, 1 in 4 women miscarry.” His words were far from helpful and they brought me to tears as I stood in front of him. What I’ve learned from what he said is that YOU ARE NOT ALONE. Seek out others who have had similar experiences and connect over this very raw and fragile event. There is strength in numbers and I have made many beautiful friendships as I’ve been willing to open up and reach out to others who have miscarried.
~Emily Manning

Roman’s story

kelley and family

Last year I gave birth to a baby boy named Roman with a very rare and terminal lung disease. For the first 2 weeks of his life he was so fragile the doctors wouldn’t let us hold him. Even too much physical touch could send him into distress. So for two weeks we sat and watched and waited and prayed for a miracle. And I pumped. I pumped and I pumped and I pumped.  I pumped so much the nurses nicknamed me “Bessy”. Almost every other motherly duty had been taken from me, and the one thing I could still do for my child was to provide him with the nourishment of my breastmilk, even if the only way he could receive it was through a feeding tube. Roman eventually did grow stronger and soon we were able to hold and snuggle with him, even though he could never tolerate nursing.  At 3 months of age Roman took a turn for the worse. The stress of seeing him decline definitely affected my milk supply. I was only pumping 1/10 of what I used to. There were days the doctor would have “the talk” with us and I didn’t want to pump at all. Soon my milk was almost completely dried up, but by this time Roman’s disease had progressed enough that we knew it would soon be time to let him go. The best advice I received while in the NICU was, “If you want to be there for your child, then you first must take care of yourself.” As mothers we often put everyone else’s needs before our own and we simply forget how important our own physical, emotional, and mental well- being is. During the last few days of Roman’s life I was so grateful that I could spend that precious time with him without the stress of pumping and feeling engorged. Roman passed away in my arms just 1 day shy of turning 4 months old.  Losing a child is awful, but trials do make you stronger and I’m proud to be able to look back at the strength I’ve gained through this experience. ~Kelley Airapetov

Nathan’s story 

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My Nathan was 3 days shy of six months and exclusively breastfed when we lost him to SIDS. His big appetite had created an abundant milk supply so it was only a matter of hours when aching breasts joined my aching heart over the sudden loss of my sweet baby. So what do you do when your milk is suddenly not necessary? The frequent feeling of breast fullness is a constant reminder of your loss. I did become uncomfortably engorged pretty quickly, but my milk supply dwindled with time.  I did hand express in the shower just enough to make the pressure bearable and avoid mastitis. Within 10 days my milk was pretty much gone.  If you are dealing with an established milk supply, I suggest to not bind your chest, because it will be painful and can trap milk and cause mastitis. Just wearing a supportive bra and leaving your breasts alone as much as possibly might be all you need. 

A few weeks into my grief and healing I looked for something to do with the 400 ounces of liquid gold in my freezer. At that point the only mother’s milk bank I found that was taking donations was in Colorado. I did talk to them, but the screening process and procedure were more than my broken heart could handle at the time, so all my hard work and sacrifice to feed my baby got old in my freezer and went down the drain. Fortunately, Mother’s Milk banks are on the rise, and it has become easier to donate milk since then. ~Amy Mitton


Thank you all for sharing your stories and your heart with us. We wish any parent with loss, seen and unseen, true peace.  You can view more stories and connect with other parents that have experienced loss at Still Standing Magazine and The Compassionate Friends. You can also join support groups about infant loss at Share Pregnancy and Infant Loss.  If you would like more information on donating expressed milk visit Human Milk Banking Association of North America.

Thanks for stopping by,

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Lindsey Shipley, RN, IBCLC

how to get a free breast pump through your insurance

How to get a free breast pump from your insurance

By | Breastfeeding, Breastfeeding support, breastfeeding tips, Recommended Products

Hi mamas! We are often asked for advice on the best breast pump and pump accessories so we are excited to share this post with you today! We want all moms to feel like they can meet their breastfeeding goals and many times pumping can help with that! There are lots of reasons women choose to express and save their breastmilk – some are returning to work, some are dealing with unexpected complications or prematurity, others are just preparing for some mother-baby separation time.  Whatever the reason, we are here to help!  Expressing breastmilk through a combination of hand expression and using a breast pump can help maintain a good milk supply even mom and baby are separated.

The easiest way to get a free breast pump! Most moms don't know that you can get a free breast pump from...

As a labor and delivery RN and lactation specialist I know Moms have a lot of questions when it comes to pumping — “When should I start?”  “What’s the best time to pump?”  “What if I get more milk out of one side than the other?”  “How long is the milk good for?”  And so many more!  I answer all of these questions in my Pumping and Storing Breastmilk video class.  It’s a blueprint for how to maximize your milk output with each session and also how to safety store, thaw, and deliver breastmilk to your infant.  After you’ve taken that class, it’s a great idea to get your breast pump ordered.  Many companies allow you to order your pump as soon as your second trimester.  Below is an easy guide to getting your free breast pump through insurance.

dsc_0764Through the Affordable Care Act, breastfeeding supplies are covered by most insurance plans.  So, in most cases, you can get a double electric breastpump from your insurance for free! Even though it’s covered, some women don’t know they have that benefit or how to order it. We’ve done the homework for you so check out the steps below on how to get your free pump from your insurance!

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Follow these steps to get a breastpump from your insurance…

  1. Visit 1Natural Way.  They’ve made the process super simple and have a wide selection of really great pumping accessories.
  2. Fill out their qualification form. Have your insurance card ready so you can upload a picture of it after filling out the form.
  3. 1Natural Way will determine your eligibility–meaning, they will find out if your insurance works with them. They will also determine if your insurance requires a co-pay for your pump (most don’t).
  4. You will then receive an email where you can select your breast pump style options – including an option to add on the Petunia Pickle Bottom pump bag.
  5. 1Natural Way will obtain a prescription for the pump on your behalf. This is another great thing about 1Natural Way, they will obtain the prescription for you!
  6. The pump ships to your door!

Easy-peasy! Check with your insurance about when you can order your pump, but most moms order their breast pump at the beginning of their third trimester.

We are super excited to show you the Medela Pump ‘n Style with the Petunia Pickle Bottom pump bag because it is so cute and helpful for pumping moms! When you order your pump from 1Natural Way, you can also order this Petunia Pickle Bottom pump bag at the same time.

Or if you already have a pump, but are drooling over this bag like us, you can just order the pump bag.

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Make sure you have my free ‘Top Ten Tips for Breastfeeding Success’ to help you reach your goals.

I’ve created a free e-mail course to help you get breastfeeding started on the right foot! Click the image below for more info.

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Thanks for coming by,

Lindsey Shipley, RN, IBCLC

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mom magazine cover

Tuesday Tools with Pregnancy + Newborn Magazine

By | Breastfeeding, Classes, Media

I’m excited to be featured in Pregnancy & Newborn Magazine’s January issue!  I’m debunking a few breastfeeding myths in the article.  Here is a preview of the questions I’m answering:

“Breastfeeding hurts. You’ll just have to get through it.”

“You’ll figure it out as you go.  There’s no need for a prenatal breastfeeding class.”

“Just ask a nurse or lactation specialist at the hospital.”

“At least you tried — just give the baby a bottle.”

“Your mom and sister didn’t produce enough milk, so you probably won’t either.”

Catch my answers and the full article here!  Also, my video breastfeeding classes answer all of these topics in detail!  Available to click and learn and they never expire.  Come say hi on instagram today and make sure you have my ‘Top Ten Tips for Breastfeeding Success’ to start with.

Thanks for coming by,

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Lindsey Shipley, RN, IBCLC

Evening fussiness + NuRoo Promo Code

By | Breastfeeding, Classes, Home/Hospital Visits, Recommended Products

Sometimes infants will follow a more consistent feeding pattern throughout the day and then seem to be fussier in the evening and wanting to eat frequently.  Many times mothers will think “What am I doing wrong?” or even, “I must not be making enough milk for my baby’s needs.”  In reality, most likely nothing is wrong!  Especially if baby is having wet and messy diapers, is vigorous at the breast, and gaining weight.  This evening fussiness may be a result of baby being more tired and experiencing over-stimulation.  In certain cases, it could also be due to a slower flow of milk in the evening because milk has been removed efficiently earlier in the day.  This is especially true if Mom has a larger storage capacity and baby tends to sleep longer stretches at night (1).  Not to worry!  This explains why your baby seems to be eating more frequently in the evening — when milk is being removed as its being made, the flow is slower and the volume is less.  Here are a few things to keep in mind about evening fussiness:

#1 – Baby won’t mind having many small meals instead of one large one.

#2 – Mom needs to settle into a comfortable spot and put her milk supply worries to rest.

#3 – Breast compressions/hand expressions during feeding can help maximize milk removal (video tutorials in my video breastfeeding classes).

I’ve also teamed up with NuRoo today to offer a promo code to my readers.  Use code ‘LLINK’ to take 20% off your total purchase today (expires 12/30/16).  They have several items that could come in handy in-between feeds including their pocket, swaddle, and scarf.

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NuRoo Pocket 

The pocket offers full coverage for Mama while allowing for continued skin-to-skin contact with baby.  It comes in black and teal, available in a short-sleeve or 3/4-sleeve option.  The included belt provides safety and support for an infant well beyond the newborn stage!

NuRoo Clouds Lifestyle 3-2

NuRoo swaddler

If you’re looking for a swaddle to soothe baby in-between cuddle time and feeding time, the NuRoo is a great option because it fits newborns up to when baby rolls.  No need to buy multiple sizes, the swaddle grows with baby!  Comes in ten unique and stylish patterns.  Baby can be swaddled at shoulders as pictured, or a bit lower underneath armpits to keep baby warm during play time.

NuRoo Nursing Scarf-2

NuRoo scarf

The NuRoo scarf is a versatile piece that can work as an outfit accessory, also adding coverage and warmth during feeding time.  Comes in five great colors and can be worn during pregnancy, while breastfeeding, and after weaning.

I hope this helps!  Come let me know what you think today on instagram.  Many more great tips like this in my in-person and online video breastfeeding classes.  I also love helping Moms with my in-person consults in their homes, my office, and the hospital.  E-consults are also available via phone or secure video chat.  Arrange personal consultations via email.

Thanks for coming by today,

Lindsey Shipley, RN, IBCLC

 

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  1. Cregan, M., Mitoulas, L., Hartmann, P. (2002). Milk prolactin, feed volume and duration between feeds in women breastfeeding their full-term infants over a 24 h period.  Exp Physiology, 87(2), 207-214.
mother and child

Tuesday Tools – How to stop biting

By | Breastfeeding, Classes, Home/Hospital Visits, Recommended Products

I’ve had a lot of Moms contact me recently about tips to prevent their infant from biting while breastfeeding.  This can really be an issue as infants get a little older and start to cut teeth.  I talk about this more in my Intermediate Breastfeeding video class.

Easing the discomfort of teething

Wearing a silicone teething necklace.  I like these Chewable Charm necklaces because they are safe for baby and also look cute for daily wear!

baby chewing on teething necklace

Offering cold finger foods (frozen peas, blueberries) or also freezing breastmilk in an ice cube tray and offering it to baby in a mesh feeder.

What to do when baby is biting

Many infants will bite towards the end of a feed when they become bored and want to play.  If you start observing closely, you should be able to recognize this playful behavior coming on and stop the feed before biting occurs.  You can do this by breaking suction and turning baby’s attention to a book or toy.  Make sure baby has gotten what he needs from the breast and don’t be alarmed if your infant wants to ‘snack’ more during the teething period.  By ‘snacking’ I mean shorter, more frequent feedings.  If biting ends up happening, you want to break suction and tell your baby “No, no, no,” repeated 3 times.  Be cautious not to yell or startle your baby as this could cause a nursing strike (breast refusal for 2-7 days).  Baby can come back to breast after this, but if biting continues, break suction, say “No, no, no,” 3 times and set baby down somewhere safe and walk away for a minute or two.  When you return, talk to your baby, letting him/her know that biting hurts, and mommy can’t feed when they bite.  It may seem silly, but with consistency this should do the trick!

baby sucking on his mom's breast

I hope this helps!  My Intermediate Breastfeeding class is a great follow-up to Breastfeeding Basics because it addresses so many common issues like sore/cracked nipples, mastitis, thrush, jaundice, tongue-tie, over supply, slow weight gain, boosting milk supply, how to introduce solids, and much more!  Great information you don’t want to miss out on.  I also offer home/hospital consultations (first priority to those who have taken my classes) as well as e-consults for my clients via secure video chat.  Email me to arrange.  Come say hi on instagram today!  Don’t forget about our current promo code for 25% off your entire Loyal Hana clothing purchase.  Check out the previous post for the code and details.  The photography in this post is by Janae Kristen photography.

Thanks for coming by today,

Lindsey Shipley, RN, IBCLC

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Lactation Link Classes + Consults

By | Breastfeeding, Classes, Home/Hospital Visits, Recommended Products

We’ve changed a few things since launching our video breastfeeding classes this last August.  With some great suggestions and survey feedback, we came up with a few ways to make viewing the classes even more convenient!  Lactation Link has services to help prepare you prenatally as well as provide breastfeeding teaching and support once baby arrives.

Video Breastfeeding Classes

mother working on a computerOur video classes are now available to view as many times as you like and do not expire after purchase.  Each class also come with a printable outline convenient for note-taking!  The three available classes are Breastfeeding Basics, Intermediate Breastfeeding, and Pumping and Storing Breastmilk.  Read the course descriptions here.  Each class is $39.99 or you can purchase all three in a bundle for $89.99.  These classes can be taken anytime after 12 weeks in pregnancy.  They can also be taken after delivery.

In-person Breastfeeding Basics Class

breastfeeding class

I offer a live format of Breastfeeding Basics 1-2 times monthly in Highland, UT.  This is a 2-hour course that offers interaction and hands-on demonstration.  We use life-sized baby dolls for position practice and there is a Q&A portion at the end.  There are also grab-bags for each attendee and giveaways from some of my favorite baby shops.  Opportunity to secure a personal home/hospital consultation after the class.  Class size is limited and kept small to allow for questions.  Upcoming dates are 10/24, 11/5, and 11/14.  This class can be taken anytime after 12 weeks in pregnancy.  This gives opportunity to go over notes many times and take the other 2 courses (Intermediate Breastfeeding and Pumping and Storing Breastmilk).  If you are interested in having a live group class taught in your state/area, please email us!

E-consults

Sometimes its tough to get immediate breastfeeding assistance when you hit a snag! An e-consult is an easy, convenient, and informative way to get the answers you need – now! These 25-minute sessions can be done through email, phone, or Secure Video. Secure Video is a HIPAA compliant video chat. After securing your appointment you’ll receive a link to join our protected, personal consultation.  Appointment times are listed here.  Email me for urgent appointments – lindsey@lactationlink.com

In-person home/hospital visits

mother being visited in the hospital

{Ergobaby nursing pillow}

Many clients feel reassured by having me plan to be at their place of delivery shortly after baby arrives to ensure a proper latch, provide hands-on support, and answer questions. I also provide home visits before or after baby is born for a variety of reasons. Some clients prefer a private breastfeeding class in their home. Others have taken my Breastfeeding Basics class and need more specific information for: multiples, inverted nipples, previous breastfeeding issues, etc. Some clients have me come to their home after delivery when they run into problems with latch, slow weight gain, milk supply, etc.  Clients who have taken my classes have priority for the limited personal consultation appointments. These appointments are reserved via email – contact lindsey@lactationlink.com to arrange.  I am based out of Highland, UT, and generally serve Utah and Salt Lake counties. Contact for appts outside those areas.

mothers with a lactation consultant

Hope this helps and you find these services a valuable resource.  My goal is to get research-based information to as many women as possible.  As a RN and IBCLC-lactation specialist, I love to educate women on their options so they can guide their experience and reach their goals.  I believe that “Mama Knows Best”, I’m just here to support and help!  Make sure you come say hi on instagram today and download my free PDF – “Top Ten Tips for Breastfeeding Success” link available in my bio.  I also love to see class reviews posted on your own page with the hashtag #lactationlink and tagging me @lactationlink so I can see them!

I’ve created this great e-mail course to help you get breastfeeding started on the right foot! Click the image below for more info.

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Thanks for coming by today.

xo ~ Lindsey, RN, IBCLC

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