Finnish Association for Breastfeeding Support, Imetyksen tuki ry (ITU), offers trained peer support for breastfeeding families in Finland. The support is available for all phases of breastfeeding, from the first moments all the way to weaning. The support is free of charge.
The peer supporters are trained by ITU. They are all volunteers who have completed ITU’s breastfeeding training (basic course 28h and advanced course 30h). Peer supporters are required to have personal breastfeeding experience. They are familiar with challenges in breastfeeding and living with a baby.
How to get breastfeeding peer support in Finland?
The peer supporters lead peer support groups and answer in chat. The Imetyksen tuki’s Facebook group is also filled with breastfeeding discussion. Some of the peer supporters are able to help in English. If you need peer support, download our new Rinnalla-application from Apple´s App Store or Google Play Store. In application, you can find an English speaking peer supporter by search. Via the application, you can send a message whenever you want to.
How to get professional help for breastfeeding in Finland?
Reach out fast if breastfeeding hurts, you want to increase your milk supply, or have other issues with breastfeeding. The younger your baby is, the more essential it is to get help promptly. Don’t remain alone with your worries!
The first point of contact should be health-care professionals: midwives and nurses who have completed the WHO Breastfeeding Counselling course. A peer supporter can offer you extra help in addition to the health-care professionals.
With an infant, seek guidance from your maternity hospital both before and after your hospital discharge.
You can make an appointment at your maternity and child care clinic (neuvola) for a trained breastfeeding counsellor. Some maternity and child care clinics have a dedicated person for breastfeeding issues.
Many maternity hospitals run a breastfeeding clinic where trained midwives provide breastfeeding counselling. Some clinics require a referral; some have call-in appointments. Ask your maternity hospital or maternity and child care clinic for more information.
There are also private breastfeeding counsellors in different parts of Finland who make home visits for a charge.
Teratology Information Service provides reliable information on breastfeeding and medications. The service is open on weekdays between 9am and 12pm, phone 09 4717 6500.
How to find information on breastfeeding?
Some of our breastfeeding support materials are available in English.
Reliable information on breastfeeding in English can also be found, for example, on kellymom.org