Lactation and Breastfeeding Services

Roper St. Francis lactation consultants provide services to breastfeeding families throughout the Lowcountry, regardless of whether you delivered at a Roper St. Francis hospital. Our goal is to provide professional evidence-based information and develop a personalized teaching and care plan for you and your baby. 

Our lactation consultants are board certified by the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBCLC) and offer additional help in the hospital and on an outpatient basis at our St. Francis and Mount Pleasant Hospital locations. Our knowledgeable and experienced staff have received additional training to support breastfeeding families in the first days after delivery. 

Contact a Lactation Consultant:

Mount Pleasant Hospital: (843) 606-7343
St. Francis Hospital: (843) 402-1356

 


 

Support Groups
We offer breastfeeding support groups at our Mount Pleasant Hospital and St. Francis Hospital locations.

Bon Secours St. Francis Hospital
Meets the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of every month from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Mount Pleasant Hospital
Meets the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of every month from 9:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

 


 

Breastfeeding FAQs
  1. Do all mothers-to-be need to attend a breastfeeding class?
    Many new parents tell us they are happy that they took a breastfeeding class before delivery. The class familiarizes parents with breastfeeding basics, hospital procedures, and services provided by our lactation consultants.

  2. Can you recommend a good breastfeeding book?
    The Nursing Mother's Companion by Kathleen Huggins (Harvard Common Press) is an easy-to-read book that addresses everything you need to know about breastfeeding. Also, Making More Milk by Diana West is very helpful in understanding the breastfeeding process.

  3. Can I come to the Lactation Center if I deliver at another hospital?
    Yes! We would be happy to have you visit our centers, located in the Women's Center at Bon Secours St. Francis Hospital and the Roper St. Francis Mount Pleasant Hospital.

  4. Will my insurance cover my visit for a breastfeeding consultation?
    Services are covered by most insurances. Be sure to check with your insurance provider for coverage information.

  5. What can I expect during my consultation?
    You, your baby and any support person you would like present will meet with a consultant in our comfortable, private consultation room. We schedule your appointment to coincide with your baby’s feeding time, optimizing our ability to assess your breastfeeding situation. We use an infant scale to weigh your baby before and after feedings to tell how much milk the baby receives. A personalized feeding plan is developed and your goals are reviewed to make breastfeeding a satisfying experience for both you and baby.

  6. Does my doctor need to refer me?
    No, nursing mothers can self-refer as well as be referred by their doctor.

  7. Will a Lactation Consultant automatically come see me in the hospital?
    We make every effort and it is our goal to visit every breastfeeding mother during their hospital stay. Our lactation consultants and counselors are available to provide lactation support to assist with your questions and concerns about breastfeeding your baby. Our nursing staff is able to help get breastfeeding off to a good start; however if you wish to see the lactation consultant, please let your doctor or nurses know.

  8. Do all nursing mothers need a breast pump?
    No. Breast pumps are needed when the baby is unable to nurse well or mother is unable to feed in the first days after delivery. Hospital-grade pumps and pump kits are available should you need to pump under these special circumstances while you are an inpatient. Pump rentals are available after discharge. Many mothers choose to use a pump to collect milk for feedings when they are away from their babies due to work or school, we can help you select the pump that best meets your needs. Breast pumps are available for purchase or rental in our gift shops.

  9. How can I tell if my baby is getting enough milk?
    A common concern that you will have is if your baby is getting enough to eat. There are many clues to indicate that everything is going well. The number of feedings your baby has each day is important. Most babies need at least 8-12 feedings in a 24-hour period. Watch for feeding cues. Nurse until your baby shows signs of being full. Offer both breasts at each feeding; this helps stimulate milk production.

    Also, remember that his intake of breast milk is usually reflected by his output of wet and dirty diapers. By day five of age, you should expect six to eight clear, wet diapers and three to five bigger than a quarter sized bowel movements. Once your milk supply increases (usually between days three and five after delivery), your breasts will feel softer after feedings. A visit with your baby’s doctor is recommended after discharge (preferably 2-4 days after birth and again the second week) to examine the baby and monitor weight gain.


  10. My breasts are leaking now. Is that normal? I am not due for a few weeks.
    Yes, some mothers experience leaking of colostrum, the “early” milk stored in your breasts during pregnancy.  Many mothers do not experience leakage, that is not cause to be concerned.

  11. Who do I contact after regular office hours or on weekends?
    The lactation consultant will return after-hours calls usually the next business day. If you are unable to reach our office, call your doctor or obstetrician as indicated if you are experiencing significant problems. Office contact information: Bon Secours St. Francis, (843) 402-1356 and Mount Pleasant Hospital, (843) 606-7343.

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