The early days and weeks with your baby will be spent establishing your nursing routine. Your body is “learning” about the level of milk production required for your baby, and your baby is learning how to latch on without causing pain. If you have any issues or uncertainty, a home visit from a lactation consultant or a call to your local La Leche League leader can quickly resolve your situation.
In fact, research shows that expert support makes a difference in whether or not mothers continue to breastfeed. It has to do with being confident that your baby is being fed properly, so if you are at all concerned about this, by all means, get help in establishing that confidence. Getting off to a good start ensures that the rest of your breastfeeding journey will be trouble free.
Aside from nursing issues, you can get advice on introducing bottles, pumping and anything else related to breastfeeding from established experts.
Here’s an interesting point: Most doctors do not have education or training in the field of lactation, so it’s not fair to expect them to be experts in a non-medical field. If you or your baby have a medical condition, contact your health care provider. For concerns related to breastfeeding, for example nipple pain, breast pain, milk supply or if you have concerns about your baby’s inability to latch on or for other issues related to feeding, contact a lactation consultant.
Think of it this way: A lactation consultant’s expertise is in you and your baby as a breastfeeding “couple”, whereas your OB/GYN focuses solely on you and your pediatrician focuses solely on your baby. Use that as a guide for knowing whom to contact.