Breastfeeding: How can you find a lactation consultant?

I had some problems with nursing my first child (difficulty latching on for a few weeks) and it was very frustrating. I would really like to have someone who could help me if I have problems with nursing the child I am now expecting. How can I find a lactation consultant in my area?


Debbi Donovan

Debbi Donovan is a Board Certified Lactation Consultant, as well as a retired La Leche League Leader. For more than a decade, Debbi... Read more

If you are having a breastfeeding problem, nothing is as helpful as having skilled one-on-one assistance a lactation consultant can provide.

When shopping for a lactation consultant I would recommend choosing an IBCLC -- someone who has been Certified by the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners. This will assure that they have met the minimum competencies in the field of lactation.

A lactation consultant in private practice can often visit with you right in your home. Some lactation consultants also work in a hospital setting, medical office or health department.

There are several ways to find the name of a local IBCLC. You can contact, and ask for names of Lactation Consultants in your area. You might also contact your midwife, OB/GYN or Pediatrician and ask them for a referral. La Leche League leaders often know the LCs who practice in their area. You can find the number of a La Leche League leader in your area by calling 1-800-LALECHE. Medela has an interactive listing of Medela breastpump locations and breastfeeding specialists. Keep in mind that all breastfeeding specialists will not be IBCLCs.

Don't hesitate to contact a Lactation Consultant before your baby is born. If you are comfortable with her on the phone, you might want to meet for a prenatal visit. Make her aware of all your concerns ahead of time. It will help to put your mind at ease knowing you have made this important connection ahead of time -- just in case. My very best wishes for you and your baby-to-be!

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