With a unique perspective comprising of extensive experience in both the hospital system AND with women who chose to give birth at home, Dr Robyn began to notice a pattern.
In her role as a breastfeeding consultant, she discovered that the women who were presenting to her with complications like cracked nipples and mastitis had been discharged from the hospital system.
However, the women who gave birth at home, were not experiencing the same sort of trauma.
This inquisitive midwife asked 'WHY'.
And that inspired 7 years of research (for which she was awarded a PhD) into why so many women were being discharged from hospital experiencing painful nipple trauma, particularly in the early hours and days of breastfeeding.
And that evolved into The Thompson Method.
So what were the results from her research?
Out of 653 women who were experiencing painful nipple trauma, 85% of those women had been taught one particular technique that involved holding the baby by the back of the head, neck or shoulders and forcing the baby to the breast.
This forceful technique (which is still taught in many hospitals) is something that Dr Robyn strongly encourages all women to avoid.
As shown in the image above, according to Dr Robyn's research, women who hold their baby by the base of the head, neck or shoulders are twice as likely to experience excruciating nipple pain.
The reality is that many health professionals are still encouraging women to use this forceful technique, and it's not an uncommon story for women to report having already seen multiple consultants before discovering relief with The Thompson Method.
The good news is that the pain from damaged nipples can be relieved, often with some gentle adjustments, based on the principles of The Thompson Method so that women can continue breastfeeding as long as they choose to.
It's a gentle, holistic approach that encourages women to trust their maternal and mammalian instincts and observational skills to breastfeed a healthy, happy baby... pain-free.
There is so much inconsistent and conflicting information being shared online which causes confusion and frustration for many pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers. In such a noisy and busy space and many women share stories of feeling overwhelmed and don't know who to trust.
The thing is, it's not just breastfeeding.
It's a journey from pregnancy, labour, the birth of your baby to breastfeeding your newborn baby and understanding that these are all unique transitions.
It's understanding that the decisions made during labour and birth, greatly influence breastfeeding.
Having the right education, preparation and understanding of the principles of breastfeeding based on The Thompson Method will provide you with the confidence to make informed decisions, so that you can breastfeed gently and pain-free for as long as you choose.
Reducing the Risk of Painful Nipple Trauma
According to Dr Robyn's research, many painful complications such as nipple trauma, breast engorgement and mastitis can be traced back to a delay or interruption to the first breastfeed.
The experienced nipple trauma expert says the newborn baby should not be separated from the mother unless absolutely necessary. If your baby's APGAR score is 7 or above, your baby belongs in your arms.
It's important to acknowledge that there are times when medical intervention is necessary.
However, unnecessary intervention, such as unnecessary induction, increases the likelihood of a mother being separated from her baby, soon after birth.
By reducing the risk of unnecessary intervention, many women using The Thompson Method are avoiding the common and often painful complications that particularly occur in the early hours and days of breastfeeding.
Unnecessary and routine procedures such as weighing, bathing or injections can and should wait!
Better birth and breastfeeding begins with better preparation.