What Happens During a Virtual Breastfeeding Consultation? — SDBFC
Information about What Happens During a Virtual Breastfeeding Consultation? — SDBFC
What type of equipment do I need and is it helpful to have a support person nearby during the consult?
We use Google Hangouts Meet (HIPAA compliant), so you just need your phone. A phone is better than a computer because it allows us to get up close to your baby while we are assessing positioning, latch, and sucking rhythm.
It can be VERY helpful to have a support person with you so that you can just focus on latching/feeding your baby and have someone else hold the phone for you. Also, partner/family support is more crucial than ever now that we don’t have access to in-person support groups and consultations. Your partner will be included in the conversation and tips will be provided so that they can assist and support you with the feeding process.
How can a lactation consultant assess for tongue tie without putting her fingers in my baby’s mouth?
You actually get to do the oral assessment on your child while either recording a video to send to us, during your consult, or both! This is actually really awesome because you get to feel what the lactation consultant would normally feel, helping you better understand how your child’s tongue is functioning… either at max capacity or with room for improvement! We will look for how your baby’s tongue lateralizes, lifts, maintains suction, extends, and cups your finger. We will also view what his/her tongue frenulum and upper lip frenulum look like.
How can a lactation consultant help with positioning and latch during a virtual consult?
Using a baby doll, we can demonstrate positioning techniques, if you need guidance. Once we evaluate your baby’s latch, we can use verbal recommendations and visuals (such as YouTube videos) to demonstrate how to help your baby achieve a wide latch.
I prefer to learn in-person. How can I learn from someone without being in the same room?
We feel the same way! We would prefer to offer an in-person breastfeeding consultation when given the choice. We thrive while sharing space with a family while working with them. We miss our in-person consultations soooooo much! Unfortunately, lack of access to PPE has required us to temporarily suspend in-person consultations provided by the San Diego Breastfeeding Center. So, we all have had to fine-tune our assessment and counseling skills to meet your needs and hopefully we will change your mind about learning from someone via the interwebs 🙂
How can we tell if my baby is getting enough without a lactation consultant’s scale?
Now, that is the one downside to virtual consults. No scale to weigh your baby before and after a feeding. So, we have to watch your baby carefully while feeding. We will look for jaw movement, suck/swallow ratios, stamina while feeding, and other indicators for milk transfer. We also might recommend renting a scale from the hospital for weighted feedings for a few days (since there are no in-person support groups to gather this data.) OR you might consider purchasing a scale from Amazon just to track your baby’s weight for a few days, which will give us the information we need to know if your baby is getting enough over a 24 hour period. Also we will be very conservative in our recommendations for supplementation with pumped milk and/or formula. We will make sure that we do everything we can to ensure that your baby is thriving while we work on the feeding details.
Should I just wait until the ‘shelter in place’ has been lifted so I can meet with a lactation consultant in person?
Definitely not! Breastfeeding is not fun when it hurts or feels confusing. We don’t want you to second guess yourself, especially during the heightened pandemic stress we are all under. With possible formula shortages on the horizon, we want to help you solve your breastfeeding challenges ASAP, as well as be a resource when other feeding questions arise.