How to Choose a Breastfeeding-Friendly Physician

stethoscopeHaving a physician who is supportive of breastfeeding is a very important factor in having a successful breastfeeding experience. Here are some tips to look for before you give birth and after baby has arrived.

Make sure your Obstetrician or Family Practice Physician covers these things during pregnancy:

  • Asks you early in the pregnancy if you are planning to breastfeed
  • Encourages you to breastfeed and informs you of the benefits for you and baby
  • Checks your breasts and nipples
  • If you have flat nipples, refers you to a Lactation Consultant for help
  • Later in the pregnancy, checks to make sure you have had breast changes and if not, refers you to a Lactation Consultant
  • Encourages you to do skin to skin after delivery as much as possible and
  • to put baby to breast within the first hour after delivery

While taking care of baby, make sure your Pediatrician or Family Practice Physician:

  • Encourages you to breastfeed your baby and informs you of the benefits
  • Asks how breastfeeding is going in the hospital and observes a breastfeeding session if possible
  • Encourages you to exclusively breastfeed in the hospital and only orders small amounts of formula supplement (5 to 10 cc’s) if medically necessary
  • Encourages you to room in while in the hospital and get to know your baby
  • Sees you in the office one to two days after discharge, weighs your baby and makes sure your mature milk has come in
  • Recommends frequent nursing for jaundice and pumping if baby is too sleepy to nurse well
  • Only recommends formula if mom’s milk isn’t in yet, baby is still losing weight or jaundice is worsening by day four to five
  • Refers you to a Lactation Consultant if recommending supplementing for any reason
  • Checks baby’s weight at two weeks to make sure they are up to birth weight and refers to a Lactation Consultant if not gaining weight properly
  • Asks about breastfeeding with every well baby check up
  • Encourages exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months and continuing to breastfeed for at least a year in accordance with the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines
  • Recommends seeing a Certified Lactation Consultant for any breastfeeding issues or concerns before suggesting the use of formula

Still have questions? Don’t hesitate to call or email Diane Erdmann RN BSN IBCLC with Breastfeeding Support & Supplies of Omaha anytime with your concerns. I’m here to assist you in any way I can.

(402) 707-1696 or contact me.

Make sure to refer your friends! The greatest compliment is your referral. Don’t forget to “Like” my Fan Page on Facebook!