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  • Anne-Marie Mougeot

Osteopathy for Breastfeeding Support

Updated: May 12, 2023

Did you know that Osteopathy can provide support to both lactating people and infants? ⁣

Though breastfeeding comes with a long list of benefits, the journey is not always an easy one.⁣

Osteopathic practitioners commonly work with infants & mothers to help with latch challenges with the hope to improve the quality and duration of breastfeeding.⁣

A randomized controlled study (Herzhaft-Le Roy et al., 2017) found that the addition of osteopathic treatment to to regular lactation consultations is beneficial and safe.⁣

The study found consistent statistical and clinical differences in the mean LATCH scores between the treatment and the control groups and mothers reported no serious or unexpected side effects during the follow-up period.⁣

𝗢𝘀𝘁𝗲𝗼𝗽𝗮𝘁𝗵𝘆 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗯𝗮𝗯𝘆 𝗼𝗳𝘁𝗲𝗻 𝗶𝗻𝗰𝗹𝘂𝗱𝗲𝘀;⁣

  • Releasing tension in the jaw, mouth, neck, throat to improve suckling & reducing air swallowing during feeds.⁣

  • Support following tongue- tie release (frenotomy)⁣

  • Cranial osteopathy techniques to assist with stimulation of the parasympathetic nervous system⁣

𝗢𝘀𝘁𝗲𝗼𝗽𝗮𝘁𝗵𝘆 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗺𝗼𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗿 𝗼𝗿 𝗹𝗮𝗰𝘁𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗽𝗲𝗿𝘀𝗼𝗻 𝗰𝗮𝗻 𝗶𝗻𝗰𝗹𝘂𝗱𝗲: ⁣

  • Assistance with breastfeeding positioning (in addition to support from a lactation consultant)⁣

  • Manual therapy to reduce muscle tension around the pecs/breast tissue, upper back, ribs, neck, & shoulders.⁣

  • Lymphatic techniques⁣

  • Support and guidance with mastitis

  • Addressing concerns such as breast & nipple pain, mastitis, and low milk supply.⁣

While breastfeeding comes with many benefits, there can also be real struggles and everyone's breastfeeding journey is unique. ⁣

Breastfeeding can look different for many people and every parent's journey will be unique.

pediatric osteopathy
lactation consultant providing support to breastfeeding mother

It is important to remember that:⁣

-Not every person with a baby can breastfeed.⁣

-Breastfeeding can have challenging impacts on mental and physical health for both babe & parent if they feel pressured.⁣

-There can be barriers to accessing support.⁣

-Both baby's and their parent's health, goals, accessibility, preferences, and what works for them matters.

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