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Why aren't health professionals better educated?

(24 Posts)
hunkermunker Fri 22-Jul-05 23:42:04

Why are so many people told completely erroneous things about breastfeeding by so-called health professionals?

Why are so many midwives and HVs totally ill-equipped to support women who want to breastfeed?

Why do so many GPs say things like "now you're pregnant, your milk will dry up and you won't be able to breastfeed your older child any more" and "six months is quite enough, besides, they bite"?

And why do so many people take what their midwife, HV or GP says as total gospel and not think to either apply a little bit of common sense to it or try to get a second opinion?

spod Fri 22-Jul-05 23:44:54

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hunkermunker Fri 22-Jul-05 23:45:57

Spod Patronising as well as ill-informed, my favourite kind of HV...!

misdee Fri 22-Jul-05 23:48:11

my parents 'do u think she is getting enough milk?' when dd3 was snacking on holiday. it was hot, opf course she wanted some little snack feeds. she is growing nicely, why worry. havent seen my hv or gp in months so dont want to know what they wil lsay lol.

spod Fri 22-Jul-05 23:49:16

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hunkermunker Sat 23-Jul-05 00:00:15

Seriously though, why are there so many midwives, HVs and GPs out there who haven't got any idea what they're talking about re breastfeeding, yet they're totally happy to tell people what to do?

Makes you wonder what else they have no idea about!

spod Sat 23-Jul-05 00:02:57

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hunkermunker Sat 23-Jul-05 00:04:08

That's my policy too, Spod.

I also go back and tell the HP what I've found out

spod Sat 23-Jul-05 00:04:45

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milward Sat 23-Jul-05 00:06:27

I always check things out as well before I make my mind up as well. Have been told loads of rubbish by health profs!

spidermama Sat 23-Jul-05 00:07:02

That's my policy too. But it doesn't endear me to too many mums in the playground so I have to keep quiet. Either that or have long debates every day.

moondog Sat 23-Jul-05 00:08:33

Just have to point out that they're not all idiots. Here (North West Wales Trust) I have had nothing less than sterling support and encouragement on the b/feeding weaning front from GPs.obstetricians,MWs and HVs.

As I've said before,if you look in the support list in the ABM magazine,you will see that the list for Gwynedd b/f counsellors (most of whom are also MWs) is longer than anywhere else.

<bursting with slightly inebriated Celtic pride emoticon>

spod Sat 23-Jul-05 00:09:18

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hunkermunker Sat 23-Jul-05 00:11:08

Absolutely not all idiots, I did say "so many" in my original post because I do know there are some fantastic ones out there.

Sadly, they seem to be outweighed by the idiots

Flossam Sat 23-Jul-05 00:12:56

I think that when DS or any more children that I have are in school I might considere doing my HV training. Because I think that I could do a better job, as I would also endevour to train as a BF counsellor. The two roles are extonably (I know I've spelt that wrong) linked and should always go hand in hand imho.

hunkermunker Sat 23-Jul-05 00:14:27

I have heard that midwives can choose to specialise in infant feeding or not - is this true? Because it seems like it's a bit of an odd option - like specialising in the first stage of labour, but not the second!

moondog Sat 23-Jul-05 00:16:40

Mw told me herself than anything beyond the most basic of facts is an added extra so to speak,Hm,and that for many,additional training in this area has to be funded by the mws themselves and carried out in their free time.

Shocking,isn't it?

moondog Sat 23-Jul-05 00:17:59

'My' mws always told me that they like to view b/feeding almost as a 4th stage-inseparable from the birth process ideally.

hunkermunker Sat 23-Jul-05 00:18:04


Surely a midwife should get the baby out safely, then start it on its way with a full tummy?

Mirage Sat 23-Jul-05 17:03:50

My HV with dd1 told me that I couldn't mix feed dd1 as it would give her an upset tummy.I had to choose either BF or bottle & she would come back in a few days to see what my decision was!At dd1's 6wk check a GP congratulated me on breastfeeding for 'so long'.A GP at the same practice assured my friend that breastfeeding would protect her from getting pregnant again,despite the fact that the baby she was currently feeding had been concieved whilst breastfeeding her then 7 month old dd.

Ameriscot2005 Sat 23-Jul-05 17:08:45

I think that HCPs like to suggest doing something to help you over whatever difficulties instead of reassuring you that whatever you are doing is completely normal.

Telling you to give the baby a bottle is a lot mroe concrete, somehow, than suggesting that you should strip off for skin-to-skin contact. It sounds more "scientific".

There also seems to be a huge emphasis on "getting back to normal" as if your life should be completely unchanged by having a baby. Getting a full night's sleep seems to be highly valued and having an afternoon nap is all too often poo-poo'd.

spidermama Sat 23-Jul-05 17:10:01

In the 60's my mum was told you have to drink milk to make milk. Hmmmm.

spidermama Sat 23-Jul-05 17:12:05

I think health professionals need to stop acting like their info is the gospel and start admitting that women have different experiences and that personal experience counts for a great deal.

hunkermunker Sun 24-Jul-05 10:57:17

SM, agree. Not about the milk thing though!

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