Breastfeeding Support for New Moms and Their Little Ones
Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-- For Alexa Leitz, 32, and Christina Hitchcock, 35, breastfeeding had become a laborious task, causing physical pain and concerns over their babies' nutrition. Almost 3 months later, their little ones are fed breast milk exclusively, thanks to the support provided by the lactation specialists at Broward Health Medical Center's Maternity Place.
Hitchcock, a recent mom of twins, had taken a lactation class while still in the hospital. About a week after arriving home she started experiencing pain and laceration. Needing answers to her many questions, she reached out to the Lactation Center at Maternity Place knowing it would be a "judgment-free zone".
"Sometimes, I was afraid to ask friends and relatives, because everyone has their own opinion about breastfeed," Hitchcock said. "But I had made a good connection with the specialist during my first class and I knew I would not be criticized for the trouble I was having."
Leitz understands exactly the trouble Hitchcock describes. Her baby, Noah, was also struggling with feeding and, after trying by herself at home, she was not making much progress.
"He would get fussy, distracted, and would appear to be choking," Leitz said. "Going back to class, I got more than I expected. The lactation specialist identified my problem as over-production of milk and helped me find the best positions to feed Noah and to reduce stimulus to regulate milk production."
Both moms have been able to fully breastfeed their little ones, and continue to attend the support groups to practice techniques and to enjoy the camaraderie they share with the group. Hitchcock is also getting support in preparing her milk bank to maintain her twins' diet when she returns to work soon.
Broward Health lactation specialists also help moms determine how much milk is consumed during a feeding by weighing babies before and after a session- helping to keep a watchful eye on weigh progression.
Lactation classes and support groups are free and welcome all moms regardless of where they gave birth. For class and support group schedules, call 954-759-7400 (option 5) or visit www.browardhealth.org/events.