Sunday 1 December 2013

Nancy Mohrbacher's Breastfeeding Solutions app

How much digital technology has evolved since I breastfed my first daughter, in 2003 !

Back then when I found myself having a cracked nipple and a hungry 3 days old baby I didn't have the reflex to go online to find a solution to my problem. I'm not even sure that I knew the expression 'to Google' someone or something. Tablets or iPads? Didn't even exist. Phones? They were really just to call people. And that's what I did by the way, because I was lucky to have one friend who had breastfed. Saying that we had only been living in our village for a fairly short time, and living in England for that matter, both DH and I being French. Z. was one of out very few friends and the only one who had a baby and had been breastfeeding her.
So Z. came to help and mainly listened to me. Luckily the breastfeeding issues more or less solved themselves afterwards.

Nearly 11 years later (yikes!) and not only is the Internet an incredible resource but it's at our fingertips too. At the same time there is such a wealth of information available that it can be overwhelming and confusing. Back with my cracked nipple, I wouldn't have thought about it as a cracked nipple. It was more 'Help! I'm bleeding!!!' (It was really a tiny pinprick of blood but I found it very scary!).

If I had had the Breastfeeding Solutions App then I would have gone straight onto 'Solutions' from the home screen :

Then 3 choices :

'Mother' for me, which brings me to 4 more choices :

After clicking 'I'm in pain or exhausted' I am presented with 3 choices :

That would be my nipples, which lead me to 4 choices, highlighted in blue rather than pink which means that the next page is going to give me some solutions :

I choose the first one and comes to :

The 'solutions' are clearly explained with links to different articles in the app. The whole process of using the app is surprisingly simple and effective, which suggests that it's been very carefully thought out! This comes as no surprise when you know that the author of the app is Nancy Mohrbacher, well known lactation consultant, author of breastfeeding books who became references for parents and professionals alike. Breastfeeding Made Simple, which she wrote with Kathleen Kendall-Tackett, provided me with numerous references when I was training as a breastfeeding counsellor and writing my essays!

Nancy Mohrbacher says : "The Breastfeeding Solutions app is not intended to replace in-person help and describes how--when needed--mothers can use the website to find IBCLCs in their local area. But it can be a great first resource, as it covers many of the most common problems and questions and when it's downloaded into a smartphone, it goes with mothers everywhere." (the link is in the App as well)

I think it's important to keep in mind that this app is a first resource only and to provide parents with information about their local support network but I really think it's a valuable tool to bring to new parents' attention. As Mrs Mohrbacher points out, it can go with mothers everywhere : in my opinion, a good support to build self confidence.

The App can be downloaded from the App Store or  Google Play

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