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Mums and midwives celebrate World Breastfeeding Week

Published:  04 August 2021

Townsville Hospital and Health Service midwives are reminding women that their breastfeeding journey is their own, and that support is available to those who want it this World Breastfeeding Week (1-7 August).

Townsville Birth Centre midwife Lisa Garland said breastfeeding offered many wonderful benefits for both mums and bubs.

“There’s so many reasons why breastfeeding is important,” Ms Garland said.

“It’s the best possible nutrition you can give your baby, especially in the first few weeks of life.

“It allows mum to bond with baby in a powerful way and it’s free and available all of the time.

“I think the one thing most mothers are surprised about is that a mother’s breastmilk is specifically tailored to their baby; so, each mother’s breastmilk is unique and that makes it even more special.”

Registered midwife and lactation consultant Ann-Louise Huth said breast feeding help was available for mums, even after they have left the hospital.

“At Townsville University Hospital, women and their families are offered post-natal visits in their homes after their baby is born,” Ms Huth said.

“Sometimes issues only arise following discharge from hospital, so breastfeeding support and advice makes up a very important part of our visits.

“It is very rewarding for me to be able to help women and their gorgeous babies negotiate the early days of breastfeeding and to help problem solve any issues.

“Most issues are easily fixed with help.”

Mum of two Melanie Long said while she had a rocky start to breastfeeding her son the first time around, she was grateful for the support she had received from Townsville University Hospital midwives for her second birth.

“Shortly after giving birth to my first baby boy I was on medication that stopped me from breastfeeding and by the time I could safely breastfeed it just felt like it wasn’t working, so I stopped trying,” Ms Long said.

“When I had my daughter, I was a bit concerned about whether I would try breastfeeding again but I received so much support from my family and the midwives that it made it a lot easier this time around.”

Ms Long said the midwives had banded to together to help her throughout the journey.

“The support from the midwives at the hospital has been amazing,” Ms Long said.

“I can call whenever I need to and ask questions to see if what I’m experiencing is normal.

“If my midwife Lisa is busy I have had other midwives call to check in on me and they’ve even offered to come out and help, even if that help is just them having a chat to me.

“They have all provided lots of advice and even pointed me to other services where I can get advice as well.

“I can’t thank them enough for making my breastfeeding journey a lot easier this time around.”

Ms Long also said the support from her partner Brandon had been a lifesaver.

"Having extra support from Brandon has been amazing because it has really helped me focus on breastfeeding and taken a lot of the stress away," Ms Long said.

"I definitely could not have done this as successfully as I have without him."

Lactation consultants offer support to women at the bedside seven days a week while a woman is in hospital and during the antenatal and postnatal period.

Support is also available after discharge from the hospital through lactation clinics at the Kirwan Community Health Campus. Please phone the Child, Youth and Family Health Service on 4433 9000 to make an appointment. Advice is available from the Australian Breastfeeding Association 24 hours a day, seven
days a week by phoning 1800 686 268.

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