Wednesday, May 28, 2014

It's Our Birthday!

Lansinoh is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. Founded by a breastfeeding mom in 1984, our products have helped millions of moms around the world over the past 30 years. Here are some of our favorite facts & figures:
  • More than 65 MILLION containers of Lansinoh® Lanolin have been used to soothe cracked and sore nipples, a common side effect of breastfeeding
  • Nursing moms have used more than 4.4 BILLION Lansinoh® disposable nursing pads, giving them the comfort and confidence of knowing they won’t leak in public
  • More than 2.25 BILLION ounces of breastmilk have been stored in Lansinoh® breastmilk storage bags
  • Lansinoh® products are available in 57 COUNTRIES, helping breastfeeding mothers around the world
  • The breastfeeding initiation rate has grown from 60 percent in 1984 to 77 PERCENT in 2013
We are celebrating with giveaways on our Facebook page, so if you haven’t found us yet on Facebook, now is a great time to connect.
See Our Timeline HERE.
Thank you for being a part of our story! Here’s to another 30 years.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Breastfeeding and Weaning: Take It Slowly

Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended for the first 6 months of life and then for at least 12 months with complementary foods.  With that said, every mother will determine how long she will nurse, when she will wean her baby, or when a baby weans himself.  It is important to note, however, that what mom may think is baby-led weaning is often a “nursing strike” or a temporary disinterest or distraction rather than actual weaning caused by many things including illness, teething, or excitement about all the new things they are discovering as they grow and develop.  In these situations, it is good to give it some time, offer the breast but don’t force it.  It is important to wean gradually because sudden weaning can cause a mom to get over-full and may lead to infection if the milk is not released by nursing or pumping. 
There are myths and misconceptions around weaning but some, like binding your breasts in a tight bra, are not recommended as they can lead to complications and cause distress for you and baby. It is best to check with a reputable breastfeeding educator to ensure that your weaning process is as healthy as possible.
The sudden shift in hormones when reducing nursing sessions and due to the reduction in milk supply can cause depression in mom, especially if she doesn’t want to wean and is being pressured to do so, or if she is prone to depression. Abrupt weaning also puts a mom at risk for developing infections like mastitis or a breast abscess because the milk is not regularly drained from the breast.
Be patient and flexible. Weaning will happen, but it takes time and patience.  When you’re actively weaning, there are many ways that you can still have a closeness with your baby and that is important because baby may feel confused as to why they don’t have that same closeness they used to have while nursing.  Be sure to get in lots of cuddles, snuggles, and show affection despite the reduction in nursing. If baby wants to nurse, let him. Many moms do the “don’t offer, don’t refuse” method which means if baby shows an interest, don’t put up a struggle but if baby is not showing an interest, don’t offer the breast. 
Weaning is not all or nothing.  You can always keep one or more feedings per day and drop the other feedings one at a time.  Many moms keep nighttime or first morning feedings for a while after baby has weaned from all other breastfeeding sessions.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Breastfeeding in Public: Do What's Right For You & Your Baby

For a breastfeeding mom to be successful, she will need to nurse her baby frequently and sometimes at a moment’s notice. Babies get hungry and need to nurse often which means breastfeeding in public at some point will likely occur.

Here are some tips:
  • Nursing-friendly clothing - easy access is key, and many nursing bras and tops allow modest access to your breasts
  • Nursing carriers – some carriers today are designed so you can breastfeed easily, while offering a considerable level of privacy
  • Practice at home – have some practice sessions to get comfortable with the process of feeding baby outside of the house, using whatever systems or covers you may be considering to get the level of privacy you prefer
  • Prepare the host – if you’re visiting family or entering a public venue, communicate about what your plans are during your visit, ask about the best options for a place to nurse where it will be mutually agreeable and the best situation for you
  • Oops moments - Want to cover up but forgot your cover? Burp cloths or blankets work great as well. Worried about leaking? Carry extra nursing pads in your diaper bag to wear on the side your baby is not nursing on.
  • Relax! - Babies can sense tension, so keep calm and carry on
Remember, it’s no one else’s decision – or business – how and where you feed your baby. You should do whatever makes you and your baby comfortable. Whether that’s covering up or letting baby nurse in the open. Breastfeeding is about nourishment, bonding and providing the best start possible for your baby. Be proud, stay cool, and breastfeed with confidence.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Breastfeeding and Teething - Fear Not!

Been bitten by your darling baby yet? Teething is a common concern of breastfeeding moms and some women avoid nursing altogether for fear of being bitten.  Fear not, teething or biting do not need to end your nursing relationship.
Teething can be a very painful process for babies even before you see any teeth. It’s normal for your baby to want to bite down or rub her swollen gums on something to get relief, and your breast may seem like a good place. Your baby might start to nurse, but then pull off and cry or fuss because sucking is causing gum discomfort. On the other hand, some babies nurse almost constantly because it’s soothing to them. While your natural inclination is to pull the baby away and yelp or say "No!", that reaction may cause your baby to go on a brief nursing strike for fear of that same response.
Try rubbing a cold teething ring on the baby's gums before nursing or during breaks, or put crushed ice in a closed, clean sock for the baby to gnaw on. When you sense your baby is closing in for a bite, pull her close to your body so she will have to release to open her mouth more and uncover her nose. If that does not work, attempt to gently un-latch her and tell her firmly, but calmly, not to bite because it hurts mummy. Latch her on again but un-latch if it happens a second time. Repeat these steps every time your baby tries to bite you, and eventually she’ll get the message that biting triggers a stop in nursing.

Monday, March 17, 2014

The Affordable Care Act and Breastfeeding

The Affordable Care Act (you may know it as Obamacare) generates a lot of buzz for a lot of reasons, but here at Lansinoh, we can’t stop talking about the benefits it offers breastfeeding moms.
Signed into law in 2010, the Affordable Care Act requires health insurance plans to cover the cost of breastfeeding support and equipment! (The legislation applies to health insurance obtained through the Health Insurance Marketplace and all other private health insurance plans, except for grandfathered plans. It also does not apply to all Medicaid or WIC plans.)

So can you get a breast pump through your health insurance? Probably! And not only are breast pumps being covered, but lactation consultations are most likely covered too.

Because the law doesn’t provide a lot of guidance on what is considered “breastfeeding support and equipment,” insurance companies are all interpreting this differently. To find out what your unique health insurance plan cover, contact your health insurance company before your baby is born.

We know that expecting moms have enough to think about without the added burden of navigating health insurance policies, so we’ve done the preliminary thinking for you. We have a list of questions on our website that you should use when calling your insurance company to discuss your breastfeeding benefits. They cover everything from whether your pump can be purchased or rented; to finding out if you need a prescription to get a pump or a lactation consult; to asking where you need to get your pump from so that it’s covered.

While there is still room for the government to expand its protection of breastfeeding moms and their babies, we definitely see this as a step in the right direction.

Here are some other websites that offer additional information about these breastfeeding benefits:

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Returning to Work as a Breastfeeding Mom

More and more moms who work outside the home are choosing to pump so they can provide their babies the benefits of breastmilk even when they're apart.

Here are some tips to help make your return to work as smooth as possible.

Before You Return to Work:
  • Purchase a Breast Pump. Most moms prefer the efficiency of a double electric breast pump, like the Lansinoh Signature Pro.
  • Build Up Your Supply. Figure out how long you'll be away from baby, factoring in your commute time, and how many times baby will eat while you're apart. For example, if you are away from 8am until 6pm and your baby takes a bottle every two hours, you'll need to have enough breastmilk for five bottles every day. It's also a good idea to make sure you provide a little extra milk as well!
  • Practice, Practice, Practice. You'll want to practice using your breast pump - both putting it together, and figuring out which setting maximizes your milk production and comfort. Here are some tips to help. And baby will need to practice taking a bottle from someone else.
  • Figure Out Your Pumping Situation at Work. Ideally you'll make arrangements before you go on maternity leave. Your rights may be protected under federal law. Learn more at the Department of Labor's website.
  • Put Together a Pump-Friendly Wardrobe. As you think about returning to work, be sure to find clothes that make it easy to pump. Two piece outfits and button-up tops make it easier to pump while at the workplace.
Back at Work:
  • Schedule Time. To keep up your milk supply you will need to pump on a schedule similar to when you would feed your baby. Schedule breaks into your day every 2-3 hours. Missing sessions will cue your body that you need less milk, which will affect your milk supply.
  • Relax. Stress can negatively affect a mom's milk supply, so try to relax as much as possible. Although pumping at work can be awkward at first, soon you (and your colleagues) will get used to your new routine. Some moms find bringing in a photo of their baby helps them to relax and it can also help initiate let-down when pumping.
  • Be Prepared. You will need to bring your breast pump, storage bags or bottles, and a cooler bag and ice pack to work each day. You may want to keep an extra shirt and an extra set of disposable nursing pads at your workplace, for accidental leaking. And breastfeeding moms need to stay hydrated, so pack a water bottle and healthy snacks to help keep up your milk supply.
What tips and tricks have helped make pumping at work easier for you?

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Breastmilk and Power Outages

Image Courtesy of AaronBBrown
With winter storms blanketing the eastern and southern states again, we have been talking to lots of pumping moms who are worried about power outages. Power outages can be stressful for any parent. But if you are a nursing mother and have frozen milk, it can be an all-out nightmare. Power outages can be anticipated in the case of hurricane or winter storms, but sometimes they are unexpected.

Number one rule? Don’t panic. Not only will panicking increase your stress level, but an increased stress level can lower your milk supply. So keep calm, and consider the following tips.
  • Consider investing in a back-up generator. Even though this can be a little costly, they can keep your freezer running at the appropriate temperature without the aid of any extra ice. Remember though, most generators run on gas and you will need to refill. Stock up on extra gas to prevent the generator from dying.
  • Use dry ice to keep milk frozen. If you don’t have a generator, consider using dry ice to keep your milk frozen. Dry ice can usually be found at a local grocery store. Remember to read up on the proper handling and storage of dry ice before buying, and try to buy the ice as close to the storm or outage as possible.
  • Contact a local hospital or emergency center ahead of time. Some may have emergency storage facilities that can accommodate milk you have stored up. It’s never too early to inquire in your area to see if this option is available.
  • Keep your fridge door closed. If there is no immediate reason for you to open your freezer door, don’t. A full freezer will maintain its temperature for about 48 hours, or 24 hours for a half-full freezer. Although this isn’t a long-term solution, it can help you to save time without using a generator.
If you need to keep pumping through the power outage, here are some tips on how to ride out the lack of power.
  • Stock up on batteries as these will lose juice fast
  • Buy a back-up manual pump to keep in storage just in case you run out of battery power
  • Learn how to hand express
  • Ask a trustworthy neighbor beforehand if you are able to store breastmilk  in their freezer in the event you lose power and they don’t
  • Remember, use any thawed milk within 24-48 hours. Do not refreeze thawed breastmilk.
Mother Nature and power outages can often strike without warning, so try to have a Plan A and Plan B before a storm strikes. If you don’t you could risk losing that liquid gold you worked so hard to stock up on.

Stay warm, everyone!