Where to Look for Breastfeeding Support
Breastfeeding is hard. No matter how many books you read, classes you attend or videos you watch, nothing can quite prepare you for the feeling of a hungry baby latching and unlatching every few hours for the first few months of their life. Whether you’re dealing with a painful latch, oversupply or undersupply, or other challenges as you head back to work, you should know that you’re not alone. Breastfeeding is one of the best things you can do for your little one's health and there are a number of groups and organizations that exist to support women as they nurse. If you’re struggling with a particular challenge, or just want to get ahead of the game, check out the list below for ideas on where to look for breastfeeding support.
1. La Leche League (in person or online)
Perhaps the best known breastfeeding group around, La Leche League’s mission is “to help mothers worldwide to breastfeed through mother-to-mother support, encouragement, information, and education, and to promote a better understanding of breastfeeding as an important element in the healthy development of the baby and mother.” La Leche League hosts in-person meetings in most communities but, if your local meeting is just too far away, they also offer online support through Facebook groups in which moms can get answers from LLL leaders and a helpline moms can call for breastfeeding support.
When you have a question about anything breastfeeding related and need a quick answer, KellyMom.com is the place to go. KellyMom features research-backed information that highlights the basics of breastfeeding as well as addresses what to do if you’re having specific challenges. KellyMom also features other great parenting information for moms of little ones so head over and see what you can learn!
3. The local hospital or birth center
Most hospitals and birth centers recognize the importance of breastfeeding and have programs or support groups in place to help moms meet their breastfeeding goals, many even have lactation consultants on staff who will see you before you check out. If you get home and encounter something unexpected or difficult, give them a call to see what resources they offer to breastfeeding mothers.
4. Your OBGYN
Many people believe that their OGBYN’s care stops after they give birth. In reality, however, most will work hard to support you as you breastfeed. Whether it’s seeing you in their office to help you deal with supply issues or nursing injuries, or referring you to outside local breastfeeding support services, your OBGYN should be someone you can reach out to with your nursing questions or concerns.
Good luck, mamas!