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By Severine Etienne for Queen’s Park Mums

The first moments after birth are magical for most of us but they can also be challenging – particularly when it comes to breastfeeding. Every child is different and, at Queen’s Park Mums, we encourage new mums to follow their instincts (rather than society diktats). 

Our vision after giving birth does not always go as hoped for, or as expected. Mothers may encounter difficulties throughout their breastfeeding relationship with their baby – we’re looking at you sore or cracked nipples, breast engorgement and blocked milk duct, and lack of breast milk! A newborn might have a tongue-tie that prevents him or her from latching on well. In its breastfeeding series, the prestigious medical journal The Lancet stated that “success in breastfeeding is not the sole responsibility of a woman – the promotion of breastfeeding is a collective societal responsibility.” Talking to someone – whether in person or over the phone – can indeed make a huge difference to your chances of success. Luckily there is lots of breastfeeding support available, both locally and virtually – check out the following options:

Local Children’s Centres & NCT Mother Meet Ups:

The majority of local children’s centres run breastfeeding sessions as part of their weekly activities. It’ a great way to meet other mums and get free tips from professionals. Both the Brent and Westminster council websites have info on all the local children’s centres.

For more general support, our local NCT branch covers Queen’s Park, the Kensals and surrounding areas, holding regular meet ups for support, advice and a good cup of coffee!

Websites:

If you ever google a breastfeeding question, chances are Kelly Mom will come up with an answer. Tons of information on a huge range of areas.

The La Leche League International pages are a mine of useful information about breastfeeding, covering a huge range of topics, from latch problems, to allergies. Sadly, the GB branch of the organisation doesn’t have a local group, but does offer a support hotline – 0845 120 2918.

Medication & breasteeding

Association of Breastfeeding Mothers

Breastfeeding Network

Breastfeeding Support

Evidence-based information on baby sleep

Apps:

There are many apps out there to give you all the information you need around breastfeeding and help you keep track of the feeds (although your best indicator is undoubtedly your baby!).

Breast Start – provides evidence-based information from NHS professionals about all aspects of breastfeeding. 

LactMed  – gives a database of drugs and dietary supplements that may affect breastfeeding (derived from the scientific literature and fully referenced). 

Pumping Tracker – Breast Milk Pump Log for Mama

Peanut – Meet Mum Friends to connect and learn from like-minded women near you

Helpful books:

The Positive Breastfeeding Book by Prof Amy Brown:

You’ve Got It In You by Emma Pickett:

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Social Media Breastfeeding Groups:

Online communities offer an easy way to connect with local mums and share your ups and downs with mothers in the same phase of life.

‘NWL Breastfeeding’ is a large facebook breastfeeding group for local mothers – the group has now over 1,800 members – and provides a huge amount of support and evidence-based information. If you are breastfeeding for longer than 6 months, you can also join the group ‘NWL Breastfeeding – 6 months and beyond’ where topics like tandem feeding and breastfeeding a toddler in public are discussed.

Note that joining these breastfeeding groups is only possible through recommendation/invitation so we advise speaking to other local mothers who may be in one and can invite you to join.

Podcasts: 

For tired eyes or when breastfeeding a baby in the wee hours of the night, listening to a podcast can work wonders. We haven’t tried them all but here are some acclaimed options. 

The Badass Breastfeeding Podcast

The Boob Group

All About Breastfeeding

More Than Milk Breastfeeding

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Local Lactation Consultants:

Suzy Lane

N.A.M.C.W, M.N.T Sleep certified, Post Natal Depression & Breastfeeding accredited and certified, Millpond Sleep & E.D.S. Accredited Paediatric Sleep (annual updates). Member of The International Paediatric Sleep Association, The British Sleep Society, The World Sleep Society and The Association of Birth & Baby Professionals. First Aid & D.B.S. 2018. Suzy has a fully holistic approach to sleep, allergies and nutrition, breastfeeding, post-natal illnesses and more.

07792692305 / suzy@babysleepretreat.com

Cordelia Uys

NCT Breastfeeding Counsellor and CAN Parent Facilitator running a private breastfeeding drop-in from her house in Queen’s Park with a team of 8 IBCLC Lactation Consultants and 2 cranial osteopaths, and comes highly recommended by lots of local mums.

07770 325 579 / cordeliauys@gmail.com

Read Cordelia’s padlet on general breastfeeding information.

Alison Shaloe 

Breastfeeding specialist midwife, IBCLC lactation consultant, tongue-tie specialist and hypno-birthing practitioner. Alison is based in North London and who does home visits. She also offers reiki, spiritual healing and is currently training to be a havening practitioner to support families with birth trauma.

07834 492390 / afrancescap@aol.com

Angie Ellis

Currently dividing her time between working for the NHS as infant feeding lead, privately as a lactation consultant and as a Breastfeeding Specialist supporting women in the antenatal and post-natal period. Angie implemented The UNICEF Baby Friendly initiative over two London hospitals. 

07765 251968 / crizzy4@aol.com

Ruth Tamir

NCT antenatal teacher for 25 years, now working independently as a Childbirth Educator and an IBCLC Lactation Consultant. Ruth offers regular antenatal courses in Belsize Park, NW3, North West London and offers breastfeeding support with home visits in North and North West London.

07932 066377 / ruth.tamir@virgin.net

Telephone Support:

NCT Breastfeeding Line 0300 330 0771 (8am – midnight, 7 days a week)
Association of Breastfeeding Mothers 08444 122 949 (9.30am – 10.30pm, every day)
Breastfeeding Network Supporter line 0844 412 4664 9.30am – 9.30pm (every day of the year)
La Leche League 0845 120 2918

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