A person must have prior experience and training in infant care and pregnancy to be hired as a lactation educator a health facility or hospital. A leadership position in a local La Leche League chapter, for example, could be a good way to gain experience with this subject. Although a Certified Lactation Educator (CLE) certification is available in some areas, professional certification is not required to become a lactation educator. If a person decides to become a lactation educator and then wants more training, they can enroll in a program to become internationally certified as a lactation consultant.
Anyone interested in becoming a lactation educator should be passionate about teaching others about breastfeeding. This could include training healthcare workers on how to support mothers who want to breastfeed their newborns, as well as educating prospective parents on what to expect when breastfeeding a child. If you work as a lactation educator, you may be able to provide one-on-one assistance to a new mother who is having difficulty breastfeeding. CLE certification is one step along this professional path, and it can include up to 20 hours of in-person training as well as other components like recorded hours of observing breastfeeding consultations or student teaching in a lactation education class. Many CLE programs are available part-time or via distance learning for those who need to work while continuing their education.
Lactation specialist training is available in some professional lactation programs. Individuals who already work in the healthcare field will benefit from this beginner level programming. Individuals who are interested in becoming a lactation educator or lactation consultant can pursue intermediate and advanced certifications.
It’s critical to distinguish between lactation educators and certified lactation consultants on a professional level. A lactation educator is not certified and is not supervised an international authority when it comes to breastfeeding education or advocacy. A certified lactation consultant, on the other hand, has completed a consultant program involving a certain number of health credits and passed an exam to become an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. The International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners is a global organization with divisions in the Americas, the Middle East, Europe, Australia, Africa, and Asia.
Lactation consultants and educators can work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, birthing centers, and other healthcare facilities. In public forums, such as public forums, some lactation consultants or educators act as breastfeeding advocates. These professionals may occasionally be involved in the rental of breast pumps and other breastfeeding supplies. Some lactation educators use various forms of part-time work as a supplement to their doula services.
Breastfeeding education frequently entails being a companion and aide to a new mother as she adjusts to the breastfeeding process. This can include assistance with issues such as reluctance to feed, breast pain or tenderness, and latching difficulties that can arise when breastfeeding a newborn. In such cases, a lactation consultant or educator could help with resources and advice.