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Shondra Mattos

IBCLC

Year of Certification

2020

Special Interests

NICU
Special Needs/Weight Challenges 
Oral Functions (Tongue/Lip Ties)

Language Spoken

English
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Please share anything you'd like from your own personal breastfeeding experience.

My daughter was unexpectedly born at 33 weeks, which definitely put a kink in our plan. We had a 4 week NICU stay, where she struggled to feed at breast & via bottle and the week leading up to our discharge, we were being counselled on how to put in an NG tube. Luckily that ultimately was not needed, and the week after discharge she began to thrive. We breast fed for over 3 years and in that time, we used a nipple shield for months,  she had a major surgery, hospital stay, and a tongue tie release.

What excites you most about being an IBCLC?

The most exciting thing about being an IBCLC is seeing the positive impact good lactation & infant feeding support has on the lives of parents. While many parents go through similar feelings, the fact that no two cases are exactly the same from a clinical standpoints creates variety, which I like.

In what types of settings have you supported patients in lactation?

I have support parents in home, Online & In the NICU as a support person.

What makes up your family (people & pets)?

I have an almost 7 year old daughter.

What do you enjoy doing while not at work?

I love spending time with my daughter & family. I like trying new foods & I recently started rock climbing.

Please share any additional education or certifications you have.

I have taken the Master class, the Structure & function course, & the rhythmic movement courses. 

What state do you reside in?

Texas

When did you know you wanted to become an IBCLC?

I knew I wanted to become an IBCLC in 2013 shortly after signing up for Doula training. The organization I trained with encouraged a breastfeeding class & once I learn about the mammary gland , the basics of how it worked & the impact infant feeding has on health, I knew I wanted to obtain the highest credential possible.

Why did you become an IBCLC?

My journey is a bit unique because I knew I wanted to become an IBCLC before I had my daughter and I started the journey years before she was born. I fell in love with lactation science at first and then realized the amazing impact IBCLCs can make in the lives of families dealing with feeding challenges. After learning more about the field, I'd come to learn that not every IBCLC is a great provider & that many leave parents feeling judged. The desire to make sure more parents receive high quality, non-judgmental, "real-life applicable" guidance, certainly played a role.

What do you wish you could tell every parent (that they would actually do) and why?

There is a lot of conflicting information out there about breastfeeding. My biggest piece of advice is to find one person you feel is knowledgeable on infant feeding/lactation & that you trust, so you have a consistent framework for information. You can then take any information that you feel will be helpful to you, your baby & your family and leave the rest. You are an expert on your baby; nobody knows them as well as you. Having a consistent source of information & support can help you not feel so overwhelmed and confused.

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