She struggled with low milk production on her right side, and ultimately her son refused to nurse on her right breast.
“I was devastated,” Anderson recalls. “I tried pumping and tricking him, but eventually I weaned this side and fed off one breast for another year.”
Five years laters, Anderson gave birth to her second son.
“I wanted breastfeeding to be easier.”
Anderson reports that all was well until she developed mastitis once again four months postpartum, and her second son started to refuse the right breast.
Around this time, Anderson met Paul Clinch, a remedial massage therapist for the Australian Olympic swim team.
Clinch developed a chest muscle and breast tissue massage to enhance breathing capacity in swimmers, Loretta explains. He adapted this massage, known in Australia as The Clinch Technique (TCT), for mothers struggling with breastfeeding and women enduring breast cancer with lymphatic fluid drainage.
“Following one 30 minute treatment [with Clinch] I attempted to breastfeed my son and he went on the right side and drained it completely without stopping,” Anderson reports. “I did not have a problem with this breast again and fed for two and a half years!”
Anderson trained in TCT and says she now uses it in her practice with excellent results. She plans to undertake a randomized controlled trial to measure the effectiveness of the simple technique.
Anderson will present Implementation of an Education Package on Breast Engorgement aimed at Lactation Consultants and Midwives to prevent conflicting information for postnatal mothers at the 22nd International Breastfeeding Conference.
“I want to bring a new angle on engorgement and how we at the Mater have made it simple to understand and easy to teach new mothers,” Anderson says.
Anderson will cover the lymphatic system and how it affects breastfeeding during her presentation.
“I will also share a few tricks of the trade when teaching mothers breastfeeding and how they can deal with conflicting advice from other health professionals,” she says. “I will discuss how our unique Mater community tackles breast engorgement education.”
Anderson says she is excited to be part of Mater Health Services. As part of the research team, they produce research aimed at increasing breastfeeding continuation rates.
Statistics from the 2010 Australian National Infant Feeding Survey results indicate that 96 percent of mothers in Australia initiate breastfeeding, but 39 percent of babies are still being exclusively breastfed to three months and less than 15 percent to five months. [Retrieved from: https://www.breastfeeding.asn.au/bf-info/general-breastfeeding-information/breastfeeding-rates-australia]
Currently, Anderson is working on a systematic review on breast massage and its effectiveness in treating breastfeeding problems. She says she hopes it will bring relief to mothers in a simple and effective way.
Further, Anderson offers easy-to-understand breastfeeding information on her website breastfeedingcafe.com.au.
“I wanted women to be able to search online in the middle of the night and find somewhere to gain information that they can use immediately,” she says.
Anderson ran a free, monthly group in North Brisbane called Northside Bump Boob and Beyond which will resume meet ups in the New Year.
Anderson provides baby scales and tea and addresses mothers’ breastfeeding concerns. The group has grown to over 130.
You can participate in Anderson’s International Breastfeeding Conference presentation by registering here.
“I am very much looking forward to meeting and learning from a diverse range of breastfeeding professionals,” Anderson says of the conference. “I am very interested to see how breastfeeding education is managed in the US and how I can learn and take new ways of teaching back to Australia. I love being surrounded by like-minded professionals and sharing our passion for breastfeeding mothers.”
Note: Post title has been changed since original publish date.