Updated: Dec 23, 2020
Lactation consultants are experienced, vital healthcare practitioners
LCs support families to meet self-defined goals, in a time of BIG transition when everything can feel overwhelming and a bit confusing. I don't know who invented the myth that chest/breastfeeding comes naturally to women. It sounds romantic and beautiful but it just isn't true. I mean, sure there are some folks out there who put their babe to breast/chest and they feel no pain and it all falls into place. I haven't met any of these theoretical folks, but I am sure they are out there somewhere?! I've worked in public, walk-in feeding clinics that are beyond packed 5 days a week, every week because MANY OF US STRUGGLE WITH BREAST/CHESTFEEDING.
Feeding time with your baby, whether by bottle, breast, chest, tube, spoon or cup is a time for getting to know your child, and for them to get to know you. A time to gaze at one another and revel in a moment of calm. Unfortunately when parents are experiencing pain, stress or other exhausting feelings related to infant feeding issues this sacred shared time may feel like something to dread. A time where baby cries, and maybe where you cry too :(
The Value of an LC
The value of an effective LC's support when you have been struggling is immeasurable. Feeling alone, scared and at your wit's end is not how you want to feel in the days after birth (if you carried or were supporting someone through their birth), or at any part of this journey for that matter. You don't have time for all of that, you have to sleep folks! You have to heal, regenerate and get those hormones back in balance. Parents deserve to NOT feel lost at a time when they are expecting so much of themselves. Despite often feeling helpless, parents do struggle with spending money on getting support with their infant feeding issues even though the price is reflective of the valuable service.
Let's compare the cost of an LC to some other healthcare practitioners that we wouldn't think twice about dishing out some dough for.
Let's Talk Moula
On average, private lactation consultants (LCs) cost $120/hr and travel to you which is a big luxury.
Registered massage therapist - $103/hour
Dental Hygienist teeth cleaning $80 - 175 + cost of fluoride
Does it seem pricey because we've already shelled out a bunch of money on baby gear and taking time off of work?
We wouldn't have to justify spending money to go to physio to take care of our bodies if our ankle was busted, or getting our teeth cleaned, but by the time baby is born we've already bought so much baby stuff to set up for our new additions that we feel cleaned out and can't justify another purchase. Fair enough! BUT... what if you planned for this potential cost before baby came, before you bought the stuff that you may or may not need. WAIT...what if you REGISTERED for either a feeding session, or a Visa gift card that you could use if you need to towards a session with an LC. Hopefully you won't have to cash that giftcard in, but I'll be honest here, most people need a bit of support, reassurance or want to learn how to increase their comfort when they feed, increase supply etc. even if their latch is good other things come up, from day 1 to day 700 and onwards. Dr. Google is super helpful but can also be overwhelming, anxiety producing and varies (WIDELY) in expertise and varies in the level of trustilibilty of information.
There are lots of hidden costs to an LC
There are lots of hidden costs to an LC such as: the time and expense to travel to you, the time it takes to communicate with your healthcare team after your visit and document this contact and fax appropriate documents, our cyber security processes (to protect you and your information), and when you’re one of MY CLIENTS unlimited time we use to text and chat on the phone after our session to make sure you’re supported when you’re applying new skills.
I offer free secure messaging and phone support to my clients for 2 weeks after every session because it’s who I am and also we are going to accomplish a whole lot in our session but things may need further support. This contact aids us in updating your care plan, practising skills, learning new ones and fielding any question you might have around infant feeding.
So, when you think about it a 1.5 hr session for $200 and 2 weeks of unlimited free phone, messenger and video support seems like a pretty awesome rate, right? Right!
Often there are free public services available to you in your community through your local public health department that will support you in your chest/breastfeeding journey. My services are private and come to you. I accept sliding scale payment in the case that you do not have the funds to pay in full. Click on the underlined text to message me to request these services.