How to become lactation consultant- Please advise! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 07-22-2014, 01:59 PM - Thread Starter
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How to become lactation consultant- Please advise!

Hi everyone! I wasn't exactly sure where to ask this so I hope the right people will see it here.

I am currently a sahm to my 8 month old son. BUT I wanT to become a lactation consultant. Does anyone know the best path to pursue for this? From what I gather, becoming a nurse first is the best thing to do. Is this true?

I am not really opposed to becoming a nurse. I just want to know if that is the most practical option or if there is a better way. One way or the other I do need some college courses; correct?
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#2 of 6 Old 07-22-2014, 02:18 PM
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Hello Tiffa! I moved your thread to the Birth Professionals forum where you may get a better response. You may also want to look at the forum for other threads on the same topic. Do you want to be an IBCLC? That does involve college courses. I don't know that you need a nursing degree for sure but definitely some courses and lots of experience hours. There are other certifications but being and IBCLC is the gold standard of lactation consulting. Good luck!

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#3 of 6 Old 07-22-2014, 02:20 PM
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This depends on where you live and what your goals are. If you want to be an IBCLC then check their website for the pathways. Yes given everything nursing is likely the most straight forward path to an IBCLC but regardless getting that certification takes time and planning ahead. If you aren't concerned about an IBCLC right now there are other options. Depending on your state you may can go to work at a hospital, clinic or for WIC as a lactation specialist or breastfeeding peer counselor much easier. Getting a position like that also makes the IBCLC easier to attain later and some of these jobs can even be done at least partly from home. There are some breastfeeding certifications that can be taken even from home that would help with attaining a job and there are also college degrees on lactation management if that's a path you'd be interested in. Are you breastfeeding? Is the 8 month old your only child? If not how long have you breastfeed altogether. Some jobs with breastfeeding require a certain amount of personal experience just like any other job would. This varies but is something to consider as well. I would suggest looking at the IBCLC, searching for breastfeeding certifications, searching for jobs in your state/area for breastfeeding, and also calling the director of the breastfeeding WIC program in your state. These should give you good information on how to progress from here.
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#4 of 6 Old 07-22-2014, 03:25 PM
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I am looking into the same thing and commented on an older thread before I saw this one. Looking forward to advice! Not interested in becoming an RN at all, but completely ready and willing to complete all course requirements.
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#5 of 6 Old 08-07-2014, 09:29 AM
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You could begin by becoming a Breastfeeding Counselor.

I just completed the program and am now accredited. You need to be a mother who has breastfed a child for at least one year and meet some other criteria that is on the link above.

Breastfeeding USA is growing fast and I really see BC's as becoming important as more and more legislation gets passed that increases coverage of lactation support for mothers.

This is not to discount lactation consultants in any way. It is just another path toward the overall goal in supporting moms. *Added: It can also be a step toward becoming a lactation consultant.

Feel free to PM me if you would like to hear more!

~Lori (MoonJelly)

{Partner to DH  and Former WOHM, now SAHM  to DD, DD , and DS } *** ***
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#6 of 6 Old 08-15-2014, 11:22 PM
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I did a couple of years as a WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counselor and I think it's a great way to explore that career path.

Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
14yo ds   11yo dd  9yo ds and 7yo ds and 2yo ds  
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Breastfeeding , college , Education , lactation , lactation consultant

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