Monday, March 28, 2016

AlabamaTongue and Lip Tie Support Group Is a Great Resource

Photo from Stanford Medicine.
by Glenni Lorick, IBCLC

Alabama mothers are fortunate to have a terrific new resource if they are struggling with breastfeeding due to upper lip and tongue tie. This Facebook page administered by Jaclyn Clark and Jessica Claire Hall offers a wealth of information. From provider reviews to incredibly informative articles about ties, this group is the perfect place to really educate yourself on this issue.

Jessica is a peer breastfeeding supporter who had local moms coming to her with questions about this issue. She was sharing information that she had discovered on an individual basis mother by mother. It just made sense to her to put all that information in one place and create an Alabama-based resource for families.

Jaclyn had problems nursing from the very beginning with her baby. Even though I saw him as a newborn, I didn't recognize his posterior tongue tie. Jaclyn says, "No one here was very proficient at PTT then, and I couldn't get anyone to validate my belief that it was. At the time, I couldn't go against my husband who was concerned about a possibly unnecessary painful procedure to go out of state to a preferred provider. The closest one at that time as 6-8 hours away." He was 6 months old, and she was struggling with supply; she did the best she could, taking domperidone and supplementing with donor milk and formula. Most people didn't see the need for any kind of revision. Through all of this, Jaclyn was tireless in her pursuit of answers: "The 'process' of trying to figure out why my son couldn't transfer milk efficiently was what led me to the wealth of knowledge and connections with trailblazers in the world of tongue ties and breastfeeding. And it gave me a certainty that a mother's intuition is to be trusted and listened to."

In the month since beginning the group, multiple families have posted glowing reports about their providers and their revision experiences. Many people have joined the group with questions about tongue and lip tie, and they are met with quick responses both from members and administrators. This group is designed to provide relevant information to families in Alabama and surrounding areas.
Image from First Food for Baby
Jessica Mays is a local mom who received a lot of input from the Alabama Tongue and Lip Tie Support Group. Both of her babies have had ties, but she became aware of it immediately with her second child. She says, "The group has been good. A lot of the resources have helped us. The exercises they have shared have been really helpful, too. Beyond the information that they have shared, the women themselves, especially Jessica Hall and Jaclyn have been incredibly helpful. They have first hand experience, have been there and done that, and aren't afraid to share what they've learned."

This page represents an independent state chapter of the Tongue Tie and Lip Tie Support Network. The network exists to raise awareness and provide research-based information about ties. They also help parents find providers who understand the relationship between an infant's oral anatomy and breastfeeding.

While many providers will simply look at baby's weight gain and assume that good weight gain means there is no problem, that is not always the case. Upper lip and tongue tie can be the reason a baby is slow to gain weight, but they can also cause several other problems. Often what is treated as reflux can be traced to a tie because of the excessive air baby is swallowing during feeds. Ties can also be responsible for a mother having an overactive letdown or excessive milk supply.

If you are concerned that your baby might be having some of these issues, check out this group!

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