Mum's invention helps combat common breastfeeding difficulties
Sunday, July 31 2022 JANE HANSEN
A SYDNEY mum's difficulties during breastfeeding has led to a “game-changer” device that promises to make it easier and less painful for Aussie mums.
Corporate lawyer Etta Watts-Russell expected breastfeeding to be easy but like many new mums she struggled.
"I felt like a failure when I didn't reach those expectations,” she said.
When she had her third child in 2018, Ms Watts-Russell searched for solutions and came up with Lactamo, a specifically designed soft massage ball that can be heated or cooled.
“The three critical components for the resolution of all the common breastfeeding problems include temperature, hot or cold; movement; and compression, which is breast massage in lactation,” she said.
Take a common problem of blocked milk ducts – all studies said the most conducive way to resolve blocked ducts was to massage those ducts with heat, movement and compression.
“It is specifically designed for the elasticity of lactating breast tissue, so it is medical-grade silicone and it has hollow surface lumps that allow for the temperature exchange, and is filled with non-toxic gel.
“You can heat it up, by dropping it in a glass of boiling water, or you can cool it – and it is reusable.”
The product was independently tested on new mums by Professor Linda Sweet and Dr Vidanka Vasilevski, of Deakin University, and was found to be safe and a valuable aid for breastfeeding women”.
The results were published in the International Breastfeeding Journal in March.
“Lactamo has incredible potential to fundamentally address common breastfeeding challenges both proactively and reactively,” Professor Sweet, the university’s chair of midwifery said.