Kellie is a Nurse, Midwife & International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. She has been working with families for over 25 years & has a special interest in supporting families with complex infant feeding issues & gentle sleep & settling support for 0-3 year olds. Her clinics are in Preston VIC 3072 & Greensborough VIC 3088
As IBCLC's, we always aim to wave our magic wands. Truth be known, I have always believed that I have some link with magic & white witchcraft. You see, my ancestors used to support women in childbirth & parenting. Often with some involvement of magical locally grown herbs mixed into potions for pain relief &. boosting mama's milk supplies & easing baby colic. I don't really see myself as casting spells, but I do know that I have some tricks in my bag to make positive changes in the families I help care for. Today, I met with a gorgeous first time mum & her 3 week old babe. He was born via vacuum birth, fatiguing during breastfeeds & struggling to regain his birthweight. The week prior he had gained 20g in 8 days, when it really should have been a minimum weight gain of 160g in that period of time. Mum mentioned that latching was really painful at times as well. Mum was also under the impression that her breastmilk supply was low. As it turns out, this bubba has some residual muscle tension through his head, neck, jaw, shoulders & lower back. This was resulting in his clenching his jaw at the breast, rather than opening & closing his jaw to help scoop mama's magic milk. Such muscle tension is often residual from being compacted in the womb & also from birth. It usually has no long term harm or impact on the baby's health & wellbeing. In waving my magic, I was able to locate the cause of the issue & initiate some intra oral massage to help relax the tension in his mouth. In further guiding relaxation to his whole body tension, was also able to apply some gentle deep pressure massage to his tiny body whilst mum was breastfeeding. Please don't expect your IBCLC to be able to do this, as I have had advanced training in order to do this. It isn't within the repertoire of most IBCLC"s. For the first time, mum noted that he was actively drinking & not fatiguing. He was able to elicit a wide gape & latch deeply & comfortably to her breast. There was no evidence of mum having a low milk supply, but there was a definite issue with her baby being able to effectively remove her breastmilk whilst breastfeeding. I am so happy that she came to see me so soon, because this situation could have easily deteriorated to one that would be incredibly stressful for mum to manage. One of the biggest reasons that I work in a multidisciplinary clinic was evidenced by today. This gorgeous little boy desperately needed the hands of a suitably qualified Osteopath - so I was able to access someone for some emergency treatment. Guess what - he latched again & fed even better still, whilst he was having his Osteopathic treatment. I have to say that this mum & baby's MCHN was totally onto managing this. She had been checking in on them closely. She had mum pumping & giving this bub extra breastmilk. This ensured his caloric & nutritional needs were met. It also helps with maintaining mum's lactation for the short term, until he is able to fully breastfeed effectively. So mum & babe will be seen by their MCHN in 2 days time, I will call them in 2 days time & review them again in my clinic in 2 weeks time. I anticipate that breastfeeding will already begin to improve markedly as will his weight gain this week. Fingers crossed, all going well over the next fortnight, I should be able to discharge this mum & baby to be happily & comfortably breastfeeding! I love such wonderful outcomes....I love it when mum's are so dedicated & proactive in seeking help rather than putting it off until things get far worse!