Getting a FREE pump through Insurance

Getting a FREE pump through Insurance

I know, doing anything that involves your health insurance is most likely going to be a pain in the butt! But I promise this will be worth your time! No matter what kind of insurance you have (private, commercial, Tricare, etc.) this post will be beneficial to you.

On August 1, 2012 the Affordable Care Act  (ACA) was implemented which required insurance companies to cover preventative care for women, which includes birth control, lactation counseling, and breast pumps. Yay! Now since we don’t have universal health care, every insurance company and each individual plan are different. Some plans may still require your deductible to be met. Other plans may require you to make a co-pay on your pump. Some plans may only cover a manual pump instead of a double-electric pump. And other plans may just require you to buy your own retail pump and they will just reimburse you for it.It all depends on what individual insurance plan you have. I know this may seem so overwhelming because you probably don’t know what your plan will offer you. But I have some good news for you!

You can go to www.breastfeedinginsurance.com (powered by Medela) and look up what your insurance plan will or will not cover. You also have the option of contacting your local agent. If you do wish to contact your insurance, make sure you are fully prepared with what questions you would like to ask them and what you want them to do for you. And be specific with your questions because insurance companies won’t readily offer information unless you ask.

Fortunately, most plans will fully cover a double-electric pump and will even give you different brands to chose from like Medela, Ameda, Spectra, and Lansinoh. All you have to do is get a prescription from an in-network provider and either the insurance company itself will send you the pump or they would refer you to one of their durable medical equipment (DME) suppliers. Some plans, like Tricare, may even cover supplies like storage bags and replacement parts.

Here is a list of DME suppliers:

I ordered my pump through military medical supplies and along with my pump i got 300 storage bags, extra pump parts and extra bottles! Definietly look into each supplier and see which one would be the best for you!

If you have any other questions feel free to contact me! 🙂

The Breastfeeding Diet

The Breastfeeding Diet

In this post I am going to tell you what increases your milk supply and what could decrease it. Eating a healthy diet and staying hydrated is crucial to maintaining a healthy milk supply for baby! I know first hand how difficult it is to eat 3-5 meals a day and stay hydrated when you have a newborn to take care of. Sometimes I would notice I only ate once or twice a day. Which made building up my milk supply and freezer stash so much harder! It is important that you also take care of yourself!

What to Eat:

A mama who breastfeeds will typically burn about 500 more calories a day than a mama who doesn’t. So it is important that you eat enough in a day to maintain your caloric output. Make sure you are eating a well balanced diet so you and baby get all your vitamins and minerals. Your doctor may still want you to be taking a prenatal vitamin to aid with getting those important nutrients. Eating a lot of protein is also very important, protein helps baby’s growing brain and muscles develop. Here’s a list of foods that are not only good for you and baby, but will also help increase your milk supply!

  • Oats
  • Flaxseed
  • Brewers yeast
  • Yogurt
  • Spinach
  • Fennel seed
  • Dill
  • Carrots
  • Asparagus
  • Brown rice
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Garlic

In addition to eating enough, you also need to make sure that you are staying hydrated! You should be drinking at least a gallon of water a day to stay hydrated. Breastfeeding will take a lot from your body in order to feed baby so you need to make sure your body can sustain the both of you. If you are not a big water drinker, anything with electrolytes would also work. A few examples are:

  • Gatorade
  • Coconut water
  • Body Armor
  • Pedialyte (the best in my opinion!)

What to AVOID eating:

Just like during pregnancy, there are some foods you should avoid while breastfeeding because either they aren’t good for the baby or they could potentially decrease your milk supply. Medication and alcohol are two of the biggest concerns while breastfeeding. You should always consult your doctor when starting a new medication if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. As for the alcohol, I will save that topic for it’s own post. You definitely want to limit your intake of gas-producing foods such as broccoli, cauliflower, and beans. You also want to avoid spicy foods unless you want a gassy baby! Another thing you want to keep an eye out for is if baby has any allergies to what you may be eating. Eggs, nuts, and diary are some of the biggest culprits and may need to be eliminated from your diet if baby is showing any signs of sensitivity.

Here is a list of things that could potentially cause a decrease in your milk supply:

  • Peppermint or spearmint
  • Breakfast cereal (large quantities of Vitamin B6)
  • Parsley
  • Sage or oregano (diuretic)
  • Caffeine (greater amounts than 325mg/day)
  • Cold medications (pseudoephedrine)
  • Birth controls contains estrogen
Our BF Journey So Far…

Our BF Journey So Far…

When I first created this blog, I intended it to be mostly educational and informative. But I feel like I should throw in some personal experiences and share how our breastfeeding is progressing.

Levi was born on September 2, 2017 and 6:29pm. I was only in labor for 5 hours and delivery went perfectly. 30 mins after he was born and doing skin to skin we started our long and beautiful journey. He latched on perfectly the first time with some assistance from the nurse and I thought “this is easy, we can do this!”. But when I attempted to latch him myself, I had to call for help I had no idea what I was doing even though I went to classes and read the books. After we brought him home my thoughts of quitting increased as we continued having problems with his latch.

YouTube videos and the help of family got us to his 2 week check up to see a lactation consultant. She gave us some useful tips and encouraged us to continue trying. Levi was gaining weight but at a slower rate. I was terrified they were going to recommend supplementing with formula, which now I realize isn’t a thing to be scared of. None the less we continued to practice and I thought we were getting better until my nipples would start to bleed. Which if you don’t know, is not a good or normal thing. Another visit with the lactation consultant helped us fix our latch.

At about 2 months we finally got the hang of things after many painful days and nights of crying and frustration and wanting to give up. It is okay to cry and breakdown as long as baby is in a safe place and you pick yourself up afterwards and keep trying. It does get better mama!

Fast forward to where we are now at 4 months and going strong. He can finally latch himself on and it doesn’t hurt anymore and I don’t dread feeding on a sore nipple. I am so proud to have come this far and I hope to reach our next short term goal of 6 months and long term goal of a year! You can reach your goals too! Leave me a comment or send me a message about your breastfeeding journey and goals! 🙂

Most Common Breastfeeding Questions Part 2

Most Common Breastfeeding Questions Part 2

I intended to do all of these questions in one post, but I apparently like to go way too into detail when I start writing about things. So I am going to try to keep these answers a little more short and to the point. So here we go! 🙂

3: What is Cluster Feeding?

Babies tend to cluster feed in the first few days of life, until moms milk comes in, and during growth spurts. When a baby cluster feeds that normally means they breastfeed in short and more frequent sessions. They will feed about every hour instead of every 2-3 hours. You will know when baby is cluster feeding because you will feel like you have a baby on your boob constantly!

4: How do I know when to switch sides?

A good indicator for when it is time to switch sides is how soft the breast tissue is and if it feels empty. If the tissue is soft and relaxed, then its probably time to offer baby the other boob. Try to feed baby for an equal amount of time on each side to avoid engorgement.

5: What are the Best Breastfeeding Positions?

Some of the most common feeding positions are the cradle, cross cradle, football hold, and side laying. There are many other great positions, but these are the best ones to start out with until you and baby get the hang of things. Side laying is my favorite because it is the easiest on the back, most comfortable, and won’t make your arm fall asleep.

Image result for breastfeeding positions

6: How do I Get a Good Latch?

This was one of things I had the hardest time with in the beginning. Each baby is going to be different. Some babies may latch perfectly right from the beginning and others may have to practice a little bit. The best thing to do is consult your local IBCLC lactation consultant. If you do not know where to find a lactation consultant, look for the La Leche League group in your area. They have monthly support and educational meetings. An important thing to remember about getting a good latch is to not focus so much on how it looks, but rather how it feels. If it hurts more than just an “uncomfortable” feeling, it is not correct. After the first few weeks breastfeeding should no longer be painful. So hang in there mama! Baby will eventually learn how to latch on their own and it will be the most glorious thing ever! 🙂

 

Most Common Breastfeeding Questions Part 1

Most Common Breastfeeding Questions Part 1

As a fellow first time mom, I know how scary and intimidating it is diving into motherhood blindly and full of so many doubts and questions. I had no idea how to breastfeed this very small and fragile human that I had just spent hours pushing out of my womb. But, 30 minutes after that sweet boy was delivered we started our breastfeeding journey and have made to 4 months and counting. Of course it was not smooth sailing from the beginning, we have over come many obstacles and challenges. My head was always rattling with questions and concerns that I did not know where to start with finding an answer. Google is always the first attempt with most people, but they find it difficult deciding which information is most useful and related to what they are searching for. I am writing this post in the hopes that it will help answer some of the most commonly asked and googled breastfeeding questions and concerns in one place!

1: How do I know my baby is getting enough/am I producing enough? 

When you are breastfeeding it is hard to tell whether or not your baby is getting enough food, and that is a very scary thought! However, there are a few signs to look for that will tell you if your baby is getting enough. the easiest way is to keep track of babies wet diapers. This chart was taking from The Honest Company’s Blog.

Image result for newborn wet diaper frequency

Another way to tell if baby is getting enough is by tracking their weight gain. According to the American Pregnancy Association, newborn breastfed babies who were carried to full term (38-40 weeks) will lose about 7-10 % of their birth weight. They should regain that weight with in the first 10-14 days of life. Do not worry if your baby is not gaining weight at an exponential rate! Every baby will follow their own growth curve. My little guy was born weighing 7.05 and at 4 months he only weighs 12-13 pounds. Hes a little on the smaller side but he is a very healthy baby.

2: Will Nipple Soreness/Engorgement Last Forever? 

In the beginning it may seem like it will last forever, but thankfully it does not. The nipple soreness should subside within the first few weeks. There are a number of creams and ointments you can use to sooth sore nipples. I used a combination of lanolin and The Honest Company’s organic nipple cream. A warm wash cloth compress will also be very helpful. As for engorgement, that will come and go until your supply starts to regulate around 6 weeks postpartum. Hot showers, cold compresses, and hand expressing can all help relieve engorgement.

 

Welcome to My Journey

Welcome to My Journey

Hello and welcome to my blog! My name is Michelle and I created this blog to share my journey of navigating the world of being a working and breastfeeding mother. I am not here to tell you that breastfeeding is better than formula by any means! I am here to tell you my story in the hopes that it may be helpful to other working and breastfeeding mamas out there.

To tell you a little bit about myself, I am a first time mom of a very happy and healthy 4 month old boy named Levi! We have been breastfeeding since day 1 and let me tell you, it is not as easy as I thought it would be! We are still learning to get the hang of things as we go along. I worked full time up until the day before I gave birth and then returned to work 6 weeks postpartum. Of course  that was not nearly enough time spent with my new baby, but this mama couldn’t afford to be off any longer.

If you are a first time mom like me or a veteran mom deciding to go back to work this time, I’m sure you have many questions! My goal with this blog is help as many mamas as I can! Since I do full time and take care of a 4 month old the rest of the day, I will not be able to post every day. I will do my absolute best to post every Sunday! Feel free to comment and let me know what your most interested in or your burning questions!