Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Laser Frenectomy Is Now Available in Madison County

By Glenni Lorick, IBCLC

Dr. Kennon Curtis has just taken over the Madison Pediatric Dental practice of Dr. Brian Beitel. That is REALLY exciting news for the lactation community because Dr. Curtis understands the importance of revising tongue ties and upper lip ties early to help optimize breastfeeding. He has gained experience in his father's practice in Columbus, MS, in this area, and is now bringing his expertise here to North Alabama!

Dr. Curtis has grown up around pediatric dentistry; it is obvious when you meet him that he is passionate about what he does. His dad has been involved at every level of pediatric dentistry and was actually president of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry in 2004. The younger Dr. Curtis has had the privilege of shadowing pediatric dentists in 8 states and 3 countries. He says "Of all these pediatric dentists I've met, I've never met one who says, 'I wish I had done something else.' I can't say that about any other profession." He was part of a large pediatric practice in Southaven, Mississippi,  prior to moving to Columbus to help with his Dad's practice while the elder Dr. Curtis recovered from a surgical procedure. Dr. Beitel has been a long-time friend of the Curtis family, so when he approached the younger Dr. Curtis about taking over his Madison practice, it seemed like a great opportunity.

Very much a family man, Dr. Curtis and his wife Candi have two daughters who are 7 and 3 years old. They are really looking forward to being part of the community in Madison as they build a life here. I was particularly excited to learn that their daughter will be starting at Westminster Christian Academy in January, since we have had such a wonderful experience there with our own children.

Beforehand Jonah had a tight upper lip.
Dr. Curtis began to learn about the importance of frenectomy procedures to help babies breastfeed better while he was working with his father. Several years ago the older Dr. Curtis had been introduced to this concept at a dental conference. After researching it, he incorporated it into his practice. The younger Dr. Curtis, whose two daughters breastfed, realized that it was an important service to offer mothers and babies. He wasn't sure how much of a demand there would be for it here; however, I think it's safe to say that he is quickly realizing that our lactation community will keep him busy!

Look at that plump post-revision upper lip!
I learned about Dr. Curtis yesterday after Annie Neidert saw him for a procedure on her baby, Jonah. You can actually see the difference in the way his upper lip looks before and after the procedure! Annie was very pleased with their visit to Dr. Curtis. " Dr. Curtis encouraged me to be there for the procedure. I held Jonah's head and stroked his hair and talked to him. It was over in 5 minutes. Then we nursed right after. Jonah has been getting bottles and was frustrated at the breast, so we gave a bottle. We have some work ahead of us establishing breastfeeding. He will have to learn how to latch with his newly released tongue." By this afternoon, Annie noticed that instead of falling asleep during a feed, he was staying awake and finishing it completely.

I have since already referred two more patients to Dr. Curtis. Like a true professional, he has made of point of consulting with the pediatrician of the 5 day old baby girl I referred to him last night. I look forward to seeing him build relationships with other medical professionals in this community and continue to help educate all who care for infants about the importance of tongue-tie  and upper-lip-tie revision for effective breastfeeding.

Dr. Curtis cares for infants, children, adolescents, teenagers and special needs individuals. His office is located at
7771 Hwy 72 West, Ste. B in Madison. You can find in on the web at . They are also on Facebook.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Curtis call 256-325-6595.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

GroVia One Holds Almost a Pound of Pee!

Dry O.N.E. weighed .70

by Glenni Lorick, IBCLC
The other day Beth from Moo Moo Caboose came to a breastfeeding support group to talk to the moms about cloth diapering. She had a GroVia O.N.E. diaper on her little boy that he had been wearing for quite a while since she had gotten him up when he was still mostly asleep to put him in the car seat. By the time she went to change him, the diaper was very full, but not leaking at all. We couldn't believe how heavy it felt, so we decided to weigh it.

Full O.N.E. held almost a pound of pee
Imagine our shock when it weighed 1 lb. 6 oz. That was amazing since a dry O.N.E. weighed just .7 oz. This amazing diaper held almost a pound of pee! It is truly one of the best nighttime solutions that we have seen. Even that baby who wets through everything is likely to wake up dry in a O.N.E. that hasn't leaked through to jammies or sheets. With a price point of just $21.95, we feel like this is one of the best diaper deals around!

Another thing we absolutely love about the O.N.E. is that it has NO microfiber. All the absorbency is a result of the cushiest organic cotton imaginable. This amazing diaper also gives you the option of converting from snap closure to aplix closure and back.

If you are looking for a reasonably priced amazing nighttime diaper, the GroVia O.N.E. is everything you need!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

It's Time for ALL Working Moms to Have Legal Protection for Pumping

Salaried health care workers deserve the same rights as hourly workers!

by Glenni Lorick, IBCLC

If you work as an hourly employee in a store, restaurant or business with more than 50 employees, your employer is legally required to provide you a place to express or pump your breastmilk (a bathroom isn't acceptable) and whatever break time you need to do so. This fact sheet explains the details of the law as it is currently written. However, if you are a teacher, a physician or any other kind of salaried employee, the law doesn't provide you any protection at all.
Some employers like HEMSI  work
 hard to accomodate mamas.

Last year I wrote a blog about this topic and mentioned the Supporting Working Mothers Act of 2013 which was sponsored by Senator Jeff Merkley from Oregon. Unfortunately our lawmakers didn't care enough about mothers and babies to act on this legislation, and they allowed it the bill to die.

Nevertheless, the United States Breastfeeding Committe (USBC) is mounting a campaign to once again find a sponsor for the Supporting Working Mothers Act so that it can be introduced in the upcoming session of congress. You may not be a very politically active person, but please take just a moment to get involved in this very important issue. It isn't a Democrat or a Republican issue. No, it is a MOTHER'S RIGHTS issue. It is a BABY'S RIGHTS issue. Every mother and baby should have the right to sustain their breastfeeding relationship after mother returns to work. Sadly many do not have that option because employers fail to understand the many incredible benefits for everyone involved including the employer!

This school counselor has
been able to pump as needed. 

Benefits for Mom and Baby

The numerous benefits for moms and babies have been well documented. Babies who receive their mothers' milk receive antibodies to anything that mom is exposed to. They also have reduced incidence of all the following:

Upper respiratory infections
Ear infections
Gastrointestinal infections
Juvenile diabetes
Childhood leukemia

Mothers who breastfeed receive tremendous health benefits as well.

Increased chance of healthy loss of extra pregnancy weight
Reduced risk of premenopausal breast cancer
Reduced risk of postpartum depression
Reduced risk of osteoporosis and ovarian cancer later in life

Benefits for Employers

Every working mother should
have this right!
Many employers do not realize that when they empower their workforce to breastfeed according to the AAP recommendation they will also benefit the bottom line of their company in a variety of ways:
  • Increased retention of employees following maternity leave
  • Reduced incidence of absenteeism due to working mothers having to care for sick babies
  • Greater job satisfaction reported leading to long-term employee retention
  • Reduced costs for employer-funded insurance plans because the medical costs during the first year of life are drastically reduced. 

The first step you can take is to click on this link which will take you to the USBC campaign. Scroll down to the bottom where you can enter your zip code to send an email to the representative for your congressional district.

Next repost this information to everyone you know

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Cancer and Pregnancy Loss Didn't Deter this Mama!

by Megan White, Guest blogger

Isn’t it strange how one moment in your life changes it forever?

This is my journey. It starts out heartbreaking, but like all good stories, it has a happy ending.
When I was 21, I received the scariest news of my short life so far: I had cancer. I was a young mom, and I had cancer. Just the word strikes fear in those that have been touched by it—and most of us have in one way or another. I had a baby that needed me and I didn’t know if I would be around for all those wonderful moments all moms live to see. I held her a little longer, I kissed her a little harder, and I watched her a little closer. She was my reason to fight. I was told I would probably never have another baby. She was my one and only, and I was determined to be the best mom I could be, to cherish every moment I had with here, small or big.

Through treatments, I soon found myself in remission! I had a healthy, happy little girl and a wonderful, supportive husband. I was the happiest I could be, but that desire to have another baby never went away. I tried to push the longing as far back in my mind as I could. I had my girl! It was selfish of me to ask for more—but I did. Quicker than a blink of an eye, six years had passed. We were a family of 3 and we thought that was how it was always going to be. Then, on a rainy February morning, I did something I never thought I would do, I took a pregnancy test. Through shaking hands and a tear filled eyes, I saw the two pink lines show up. I was pregnant! Our family was overjoyed. My daughter was beside herself with excitement. After years of being told another baby was near impossible, we were going have a baby!

Then on May 22nd, 2014 we went to a normal wellness check and heard news that shattered our little world into a thousand indiscernible pieces. We lost the baby. My heart was broken, and I didn’t think I would even be able to walk out of the doctor’s office. The hardest part of it all was knowing we’d have to tell our little girl that the baby was gone. How do you do that? How do you explain to a six-year-old that her brother or sister was no longer in mommy’s tummy? I still don’t know if we explained it right.
We all did our best to push forward, but I know I dropped the ball. I let my grief consume me, and the one that suffered the most was my daughter. I will always feel guilt over that. I pushed myself to do better, to be better. I dusted myself off and was determined to be the mommy that she needed—the one that she was used to.

Then, in mid-September, I had my annual check-up to see if I was still doing well. I was told that I was perfectly healthy. In fact, I was a perfectly health, 8-weeks-pregnant. ‘How is this possible?’ I thought to myself. How is it possible that after 6 years of trying that not only did I become pregnant once, but twice. I was terrified. I didn’t have that overwhelming joy that I felt the first time we were told that we were to have another baby. I couldn’t ; I wouldn’t let myself. I went to my appointments and heard the heartbeat every time, but I wasn’t going to let my hopes rise just to have them fall again. We didn’t tell our daughter about the pregnancy until it was getting obvious that mommy was getting bigger. We didn’t announce the pregnancy to anyone until I was 20 weeks. By then, we had a sex. We were having a boy!

There was no way that I could keep myself from feeling. We were going to have another baby! With every week that passed, I looked up if something were to happen, if the baby would have to be born early, would he survive. Those fears were squashed when I hit 37 weeks, then 38, 39 and then at 40 weeks, one day, our beautiful, healthy baby boy was born! There was only one way that I wanted to nourish him, and that was to nurse. There was not one moment, one experience that I wanted to miss out on. We had a few bumps in the road; we had to learn each other after all! But we have made it! At 8 weeks, our little boy is in the 75th percentile on height, and the 95th on weight! Not only have we made it this far, but I knew that if I was able, I wanted to donate my milk to another fanily that needed it. With an oversupply and an over-active let-down, I have been able not only to feed my son, but donate to 2 other babies! I cannot even begin to explain the honor I feel being a part of someone else’s breastfeeding journey as well as my own.

The pain of our loss will never go away, but we get better at moving forward. You take it day by day, and if you can’t manage that, take it minute by minute. Healing takes time, and my healing has been helped by my two beautiful children. Our journey isn’t over, not by a long shot, and I look forward to every second ahead of us.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Give Them Wings and WatchThem Fly

Nicholas came to the airport to see Uncle John off.
By Glenni Lorick, IBCLC

Today I said good-bye to my 16 year old son as he headed off on the adventure of a lifetime to spend his junior year of high school in Cali, Colombia, at the Colegio Americano. As I was driving home from the airport I couldn't hold back the tears, and the thought occurred to me that the very act of becoming a mother means that you will never again be the same, no matter how old your children get. A tiny piece of your heart will always be with each of your children wherever  they go. You will rejoice when you see them make wise decisions, but if those decisions mean that they leave you for a time, that little piece of heart will go with them...and it will hurt for a while.

When John Carl (Juan Carlos to his Colombian and Peruvian friends) told his coaches at Westminster Christian Academy about his decision to go to Cali, one of his coaches asked him to write up something explaining why he was doing this. The incredible support he has had from faculty, administration, coaches and friends at WCA has been phenomenal. We are so blessed to have been part of such an incredible community of faith for the last 11 years.

I want to share with you what my son wrote because I am so proud of his willingness to listen to God's call. We have tried to raise him to be obedient, and now it's time for us to watch in amazement as he does just that!

Juan Carlos in his uniform

John Carl's Testimony

This summer I took a trip to Colombia for the 185th Cumberland Presbyterian General Assembly which was held at the Colegio Americano. The Colegio Americano is a private school that was founded by the Cumberland Presbyterian Church in 1925; it consists of kindergarten to high school. They have around 120 kids in the high school level grades, so not much bigger than Westminster. However in Colombia, graduation is after grade 11 unlike the United States where it’s after 12th grade.

When I first arrived at the Colegio Americano, I was astounded by the campus grounds, the teachers, and all the students helping out for the General Assembly. That Saturday I had a wild thought that coming here to do schooling would be amazing. When I told that thought to my mom, she didn’t know what to think. She thought maybe coming down again next summer for a couple weeks would be good for me after school here had finished up just to see what school is like in Colombia. I knew in my heart that I truly wanted to attend the Colegio Americano for the entire year and graduate from there.

I have always wondered what God’s calling feels like because I have never been spoken to physically by God, and so I wondered how to know exactly what the Lord wants. The next three days we had services in which God directly showed me the way He wants me to take. We had a sermon on how to listen to God’s call and to go and make disciples of all nations. On Sunday there was a special missionary service where missionaries throughout the world were recognized.

My family used to be in the mission field first in Costa Rica and then in Peru. I was born in Lima, Peru, into a missionary family and would live there for the next 5 years. I remember parts of Peru but not all of it; however, I do remember the heartbreak it brought my entire family, including me, when we were forced to leave the country where I was born. One interesting note is that my trip to Colombia was the first time I had been back to South America since we left Peru. I didn’t realize how much of a longing I had to be back and experience South America again. I have dreamt of going back to Peru and perhaps someday I may live there again, but Colombia feels like the place I want to be, the place I need to be.

The Colegio Americano has a beautiful campus!
That Monday night a Colombian preacher spoke about letting go and being willing to accept God’s will. He had urged his child to finish law school before going into seminary even though God was calling his son into the ministry. In order to please his father, the son finished law school and then became a pastor. That night the preacher apologized to his son for not allowing him to follow God’s calling immediately at that point in his life. This sermon was very powerful to both my parents and me. Afterwards I found my mother and sobbed because we both knew this was exactly what God wanted for me, no questions asked.

I still do not know what all God has planned for me as I go to attend the Colegio Americano this next year, but I do know that if I follow His will and his guidance I will be okay. I also know that people may worry about the safety of a gringo in Colombia. First off, if I am following what God wants me to do I am worried by nothing. Secondly, the city of Cali is a very safe city, and while I was at the General Assembly I never felt danger at all, only the loving kindness of all the Colombians. Someday I pray that I will be able to go to many countries in order to serve and proclaim the name of Jesus to those who are in the darkness, looking for light.