Preparing for Lactation Consultant Visit: Top Tips

September 9, 2023

For an At-Home Lactation Consultant Visit

Welcoming a lactation consultant (LC) into your home can be an empowering step toward ensuring a successful breastfeeding or chestfeeding journey. These professionals offer guidance, hands-on support, and solutions for a myriad of breastfeeding challenges. To make the most of your visit, consider the following preparation tips.

1. Gather Your Questions

Prioritize what you'd like to address. Jot down questions or concerns so you won't forget them during the consultation. Whether you're worried about latching, milk supply, or pain during feeding, your LC is there to assist. Here is an editable Moms & Baby's Activities Tracker, which can help you keep track of your baby's feeding schedule.

2. Create a Comfortable Space

Identify a cozy spot in your home where you'd prefer to nurse. This could be a chair, your bed, or the living room couch. Ensure the area has good lighting and is quiet enough for conversation.

3. Have All Supplies Ready

Gather all breastfeeding equipment and supplies you've been using, such as:

  • Nursing pillows.
  • Breast pumps and their parts.
  • Nipple creams or shields.
  • Any supplements or medications you're taking related to lactation.

This will allow the LC to assess and guide on best practices for each item.

4. Dress for Comfort

Wear something that makes it easy to expose your chest for feeding and for the LC to observe the baby’s latch. A nursing tank top or a comfortable shirt can be a good choice.

5. Feed Your Baby

It might sound counterintuitive, but try to feed your baby about an hour or so before the LC arrives. This ensures your baby will be ready to feed again during the consultation, allowing for real-time observation and assistance. Do check with your LC beforehand to understand a good time to feed the baby before consultation.

6. Keep Feeding Logs

If possible, maintain a log of feeding times, diaper changes, and any challenges you've encountered in the days leading up to the visit. This information can provide valuable insights for the consultant.

7. Have a Support Person

Consider having a partner, family member, or friend present. They can take notes, offer emotional support, and ensure you retain the vital information shared.

8. Prepare Mentally

It's essential to approach the visit with an open mind. Remember, the goal is to improve the breastfeeding experience for both you and your baby. It's okay to feel vulnerable or emotional; your LC is trained to provide compassionate and non-judgmental support.

9. Ask About Follow-Up

Before wrapping up the session, discuss with the LC about potential follow-up visits or check-ins. Knowing there's ongoing support can be very reassuring.

10. Payment and Paperwork

Ensure you're clear on the payment process. If you're hoping to get reimbursed by insurance, get any necessary paperwork (e.g super bill) from the LC. It's also helpful to have a pen and notepad ready for any additional notes or instructions.

For Your Lactation Consultant Office Visit

Visiting a lactation consultant (LC) at their office is a proactive step towards a successful breastfeeding or chestfeeding journey. Whether you're a first-time parent or experienced in the world of breastfeeding, an LC can provide expert advice and hands-on assistance. Here's how you can prepare for a smooth and productive consultation at the LC's office:

1. List Down Your Concerns

Before the appointment, jot down any questions or issues you've encountered. Whether it's latching difficulties, milk supply concerns, or discomfort during feeding, having a list ensures you won’t forget to address any pressing matters.

2. Dress for Comfort and Accessibility

Wear clothing that allows for easy access to your chest. A nursing bra or tank top can be helpful. This will enable the LC to observe a feeding session and provide real-time feedback.

3. Timing is Key

Try to schedule the appointment around your baby's typical feeding time. If the baby is ready to feed during the consultation, the LC can observe the session more effectively.

4. Bring Essential Items

Pack a bag with items you commonly use during feedings:

  • Nursing pillows.
  • Breast pumps and their accessories.
  • Any lactation supplements or medications.
  • Nipple creams or shields.

Having these items on hand allows the LC to offer guidance tailored to your specific tools and products.

5. Document Feeding and Diaper Changes

Maintain a log of recent feedings, including their duration, which side you fed on, and any challenges faced. Note diaper changes too, as this can give insights into the baby's milk intake. Here is an editable Moms & Baby's Activities Tracker, which can help you keep track of your baby's feeding schedule.

6. Consider Company

If possible, bring along a partner, family member, or close friend. They can provide emotional support, help recall information shared during the session, and be an extra pair of hands if needed.

7. Familiarize Yourself with the Office Protocol

Some LC offices may have specific protocols or guidelines, especially in the current health climate. It's a good idea to check in advance if there are any guidelines you should be aware of, like wearing a mask or filling out any preliminary paperwork.

8. Be Open-Minded

Every breastfeeding journey is unique. While you might have read or heard about various breastfeeding experiences, it's essential to be open to personalized advice and suggestions. Remember, the LC's primary goal is to enhance your breastfeeding experience.

9. Inquire About Follow-up

Ask about follow-up consultations, either in person or virtually. Continuous support and guidance can often lead to better outcomes in the breastfeeding journey.

10. Clarify Payment Procedures

Before the consultation, ensure you understand the payment process. Check if your insurance covers the visit and what documents (e.g super bill) you might need for reimbursement.

A visit to a lactation consultant can be a game-changer for many families, ensuring that both mom and baby are thriving in their breastfeeding relationship. By preparing in advance, you set the stage for a productive consultation, equipped to address challenges and embrace the joys of breastfeeding.

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Disclaimer: This blog's content is provided for informational purposes only, and does not intend to substitute financial advice, legal advice, professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and you should not rely solely on this information. Always consult a professional in the area for your particular needs and circumstances prior to making any professional, legal, medical and financial or tax-related decisions.