“Cures” for Sore Nipples

It’s no surprise that there are dozens of “cures” out there for sore nipples. In my lactation practice, nipple pain is the most common reason that mothers seek help. The only real way to “cure” sore nipples, however, is to fix the underlying cause. It’s usually a faulty latch that causes the problem in the first place. Once the latch is corrected, nipples feel better. Usually the results are immediate.

Some antibiotics and prescription medications can be helpful for badly damaged nipples, but nothing can eliminate the pain completely until the latch problem has been resolved. In your efforts to find relief, you may find remedies promising to cure sore nipples. Often these remedies are useless—or even harmful. Continue reading

Lactation Consultant Red Flags!

Help for sore nipples.

Help for sore nipples.

Lactation consultants are specialists in the art and science of breastfeeding. They must have 100’s, often 1000’s of hours of clinical experience before earning the title, IBCLC. (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant) If you’re having trouble breastfeeding, or if you just want to avoid trouble down the road, hiring a lactation consultant can be very helpful. But how do you know if a particular lactation consultant has the experience and skills to help you? Continue reading

Insurance Reimbursement Appeal Letter Sample

photoThis letter is my formal appeal of the rejection of Claim Number _____ for Lactation Consultation Services provided to my son, (Name) on (Date) for the amount of _____.

Summary of Events: Child was born on (Date). He was discharged from the hospital on (Date) (Detail here whatever complications you had with feeding/jaundice/dehydration/re-admittance to hospital, etc) On (Date) we met with our pediatrician, (Name) and expressed concerns about breastfeeding. Dr. _______ noted that baby was struggling to thrive and referred us to Lactation Consultant, Renee Beebe, M.Ed., IBCLC. Renee provided her services on (Date). Following the consultation, I submitted all required paperwork to (name of insurance company) for reimbursement. On (Date), I received an Explanation of Benefits (referenced above), noting the claim was denied. Continue reading

My Baby Has Reflux!

Baby with tight frenulum.  No tongue elevation present.“My pediatrician says my baby has reflux! She says there are medications to help. I really don’t want my baby to take medicine. He’s so little. But I also don’t want him to suffer and spit up so much. What should I do? Can you help me?”

Although the diagnosis of reflux seems ominous, keep in mind that all babies have reflux to some degree. The sphincter muscle that separates the stomach and the esophagus is loose and lets fluids go back and forth. That’s why it’s common for babies to spit up after a meal. If your baby seems uncomfortable, however, he may need some help.

I see many babies diagnosed with reflux in my practice. I have found that some simple changes in feeding posture or management can decrease symptoms substantially. Most of my clients do not need to medicate their babies. Continue reading

Never Wake a Sleeping Baby?

Newborn sleeping

Breastfeeding seemed to go OK at first. After all, the baby was nursing a lot and slept well. It didn’t seem right to the new mom that her 1-week-old baby slept 6-8 hour stretches, but everyone said “don’t worry.” A pediatric visit at 2 weeks confirmed this mom’s worst fears. Her baby had lost weight!  She was told to supplement with formula and contact a lactation consultant. Continue reading