What is an IBCLC you ask? Well, first of all, IBCLC stands for International Board Certified Lactation Consultant…in short, she is a lady that has your back during breastfeeding. She can help with almost anything…she is very compassionate, a good problem solver, and extremely educated about breastfeeding.
The IBLCE has this to say about IBCLC’s:
IBCLCs have passed a rigorous examination that demonstrates the ability to provide knowledgeable, comprehensive lactation and breastfeeding care. Attainment of the IBCLC credential signifies that the practitioner has demonstrated knowledge to:
- work together with mothers to prevent and solve breastfeeding problems
- collaborate with other members of the health care team to provide comprehensive care that protects, promotes and supports breastfeeding
- encourage a social environment that supports breastfeeding families
- educate families, health professionals and policy makers about the far-reaching and long-lasting value of breastfeeding as a global public health imperative.
With a focus on preventive health care, IBCLCs encourage self-care, empowering parents to make their own decisions. IBCLCs use a problem solving approach to provide evidence based information to pregnant and breastfeeding women and make appropriate referrals to other members of the health care team.
What I love the most about what the IBLCE says above is that “IBCLCs encourage self-care, empowering parents to make their own decisions” (emphasis mine).
Seriously. If only ALL providers could empower parents to make their own decisions! I have heard of (and seen with my own two eyes) SO many providers try to take the power and decision-making away from the parents (or patient). For instance, some of the scare tactics that you hear some pediatricians or others in the healthcare and public health arena that are used against parents who choose to not vaccinate. Or the other way around from anti-vaccine folks/providers against those who choose *to* vaccinate.
Regardless, this isn’t a post on vaccinations….I digress. I’m really just wanting to convey that you won’t get those kinds of scare tactics, judgment, or rebuke from IBCLC’s*…it’s not part of their “code”. They are there to help you do what your body is made to do for your baby. As many women know, breastfeeding can be super challenging at times! IBCLC’s are a wonderful resource and support for women who need a little extra help.
So, happy IBCLC day, and stay tuned for some features on IBCLC’s in the local Sioux Falls area coming next week! If you are looking for an IBCLC in the area, you will be able to check in with any of these super-educated and professional ladies and they’ll be happy to help you!
*Obviously, there are always different styles in practicing. If you meet with an IBCLC (or ANY health care practitioner/professional for that matter) and for whatever reason you don’t get the help you need or don’t feel comfortable, find another one! J