Nicole Bando | Dietitian & Lactation Consultant

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Lactation Consultant for a Successful Breastfeeding Journey

About Nicole

Image of Nicole Bando Dietitian and lactation consultant

As a mother of 2 children, Nicole has personal experience of both the joys and challenges of feeding babies and young children.

Her interest in the wonders of breastfeeding was piqued by a wonderful teacher at university, whilst studying nutrition and dietetics. It wasn’t until she had her children, many years later, that she realised there was a lack of support and knowledge for women when it came to feeding their own babies.

She decided to train as a Breastfeeding Counsellor for the Australian Breastfeeding Association, and volunteered on the National Breastfeeding Helpline, supporting mums all over Australia. A desire to keep learning led to an additional 90 hours of lactation- specific study, working to obtain 1000 clinical hours with breastfeeding mums and sitting the exam to certify as an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant.

Nicole brings her knowledge and expertise as a paediatric dietitian to this role, to give mothers the tools, knowledge, and confidence to feed their children.

How it Works

Step One

You book an initial Lactation Consultant 90-minute appointment at NEST Family Clinic, Elsternwick, or Telehealth online. If you would like a home visit (within 10km of Elsternwick), please contact (03) 9528 5882. Please note travel fees apply for home visits.

Step Two

The initial assessment is to gain an understanding of you and your baby’s history, feeding patterns, growth, output (wet/dirty nappies), and behaviour, with observation of a breastfeed, and guidance to optimise position and attachment, for comfort and efficient milk removal. Specific concerns, such as growth, milk supply, mastitis, pain will be addressed, and questions answered. You will be provided with recommendations to meet your unique feeding needs, and a follow-up plan discussed.

Step Three

Nicole provides a brief follow-up phone call within days of the initial assessment to check your progress and depending on your needs booking a follow up appointment of 30 to 60 minutes.

Mum and baby breastfeeding - shows baby's head at the breast. A lactation consultant can help you position baby better at the breast.
Mother and Baby after breastfeeding. Melbourne lactation Consultant services
Mother breastfeeding her baby. Nicole Bando is a Melbourne based lactation consultant.

Lactation and Breastfeeding FAQ

What makes your lactation consulting services unique?

As a Paediatric Dietitian (and lactation consultant), I am trained to expertly assess and manage baby’s growth, as well as the breastfeeding mother’s nutritional needs. I can support food allergies and intolerances in the breastfed baby, addressing the mother’s diet and providing alternatives when foods such as dairy or soy need to be eliminated.

I support a mother to feed her baby as she wishes, with independent and evidence-based guidance. As I work at an interdisciplinary medical practice, I have the benefit of working closely with medical and allied health professionals to organise additional support and best care for you and your baby, if needed.

I am going to have a baby. Do I need a prenatal lactation consultation, and what can I expect from it?

Evidence shows that breastfeeding education before baby arrives supports a positive breastfeeding journey. It is extremely beneficial to have some knowledge and tools before baby arrives, so you know what to expect, when and where to seek help with your breastfeeding concerns.

From a lactation consultant, expectant parents will learn about normal feeding for breastfed babies, signs that baby is getting enough, breastfeeding in the first days after birth, milk production and supply, how your baby attaches to the breast and signs that you may need some help. The above are examples only, it is your session and can be tailored to your needs and questions.

I'm struggling with breastfeeding. How soon can I get a lactation consultant appointment, and what immediate breastfeeding advice is available?

Please contact NEST Family Clinic on 9528 5882 if you require an urgent appointment and I will do my best to see you in a timely manner. The National Breastfeeding Helpline (1800 686 268), your GP,  maternal child health nurse are all good resources.

If you need urgent care, please visit your local emergency department.

What are the most common breastfeeding concerns you help with as a lactation consultant?

Breastfeeding education before baby arrives (including expressing colostrum)

Sore nipples and breasts

Low and over supply of breast milk

Infant allergies and intolerances (with assessment of mother’s diet)

Positioning and attachment of baby at the breast

Mastitis, thrush, vasospasm, white spot and other reasons for pain

Breast refusal, bottle aversions

Fussy babies

Sleep and settling

Mixed feeding for your baby

Understanding newborn behaviour and how it relates to breastfeeding

Introduction of solids & weaning off breast milk

Expressing breast milk

Return to work

How do you work with my baby's paediatrician or other healthcare provider?

Good and consistent communication with your care team is vital to support you and your baby. With your consent, I will liaise with your healthcare professionals (via phone, letter, or email) to outline the lactation assessment and management strategies recommended.

If medical investigations are required, such as blood tests, stool samples or swabs, this will be requested to the relevant professional(s).

Can I claim your services on private health coverage or Medicare?

Many private health funds provide a rebate for lactation consultant services, please check with your health fund to determine your level of care.

At this stage, Medicare does not provide rebate for lactation consultations.

Do you offer virtual lactation consulting services, and how do they work?

Yes. Telehealth is available on a secure medical platform. The assessment process is the same as a face-to-face visit. Breastfeeding can be observed with the use of cameras and video.

It is not essential, but it can be helpful to have a partner or family member present to assist with positioning the camera whilst you are feeding, or to look after other children.

What resources or follow-up support is available after our breastfeeding consultation?

Depending on your needs, you will be provided with resources to support your care. (For example, information on mastitis management if that is the reason for your visit). I provide a brief phone call in the days following the consultation that is included in the initial consultation fee.

Thereafter, a 30-60 minute follow-up appointment may be required and this will be discussed during the initial assessment.

How can I prepare for my lactation consultation to get the most out of our session?

Please bring along your baby’s green book to the appointment so that growth can be assessed. If you are using additional equipment, such as nipple shields, pumps, pillows, etc. please feel free to bring these along so that best assessment and care can be provided.

I have a comfortable couch perfectly set up for feeding. If you have older children, feel free to bring them along, my office is well equipped to occupy children.

Do I need a referral to see you?

A referral is not required, however helpful information can include doctor’s letters and recent related blood test results.

Happy baby - Nicole Bando is a dietitian and Lactation Consultant based in Melbourne