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Welcome to The Maris Practice Blog. Here you will find musings, reflections and information about best practice in alternative therapies. We hope you find it useful and interesting.

Helping new born babies and their mums in successful breast-feeding with the help of Osteopathic treatment

cranial

Lactation consultants around the world have been extensively studying the process of muscle movement, (biomechanics) used during sucking, in babies from birth through to weaning.

Lactation consultants are trained to assess difficulties, correct positioning, provide emotional support to the mothers, and help babies express their ‘behavioural sequence’ leading to breastfeeding from birth.

These professionals however, often feel helpless when the sucking motion continues to produce difficulties in infants despite their advice being given and followed.

Osteopathy has been used to help babies improve their sucking technique. In practice the approach appears to be promising and has led to a scientific study group investigating this further.

A recent study is one of the first to bring together lactation consultants and osteopaths in order to address infants with biomechanical sucking difficulties. The findings support the explanation that the addition of osteopathic treatment during regular lactation consultation visits, is beneficial and safe.

People are often surprised that babies may need this physical intervention. It is however worth noting, that muscle, joint and cranial problems can start as a consequence of the positioning of the foetus in the womb (intra-uterine constraint), and through the birthing process.

Ultimately the study highlights that a single osteopathic treatment, coupled with a lactation consultation, for infants with sucking difficulties is a more effective way to improve latch and sucking, than lactation consultations alone.

Mothers also perceived an improvement in breastfeeding their infants in terms of comfort and infant’s ability.

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