Position statement on the Mum and Baby Academy CPD Module on tongue-tie distributed by various midwifery and nursing journals in October 2017
The Association of Tongue-tie Practitioners welcomes any opportunity for healthcare professionals to access free learning such as that Mum and Baby Academy offer. However we have reviewed the tongue-tie module after concerns were raised by some of the ATP membership.
In the module the learning objectives are stated as being:
- Be able to identify and assess ankyloglossia in infants
- Understand how ankyloglossia can affect breastfeeding
- Appreciate the ways in which women can be supported to successfully breastfeed babies with ankyloglossia
- Be able to advise and reassure parents about ankyloglossia and frenotomy using evidence-based knowledge.
However, it is the opinion of the ATP committee that the module:
- Fails to adequately describe how tongue-tie is classified or assessed and provides irrelevant information on ‘superior’ tongue-tie which is an entirely different anomaly to a restricted lingual frenulum. Assessment of tongue-tie is complex and practitioners require advanced lactation skills as well as practical experience in examining the mouths of infants, something a short distance learning module cannot provide.
- Fails to explain in any depth how tongue-tie may impact on feeding and doesn’t provide any guidance on strategies that can be used to support mother’s with the various feeding challenges tongue-tie may present.
- Provides confusing and misleading information on how a baby latches to the breast and the role of the lips.
- Gives inadequate information on how tongue-tie division is performed, normal wound healing and complications.
We believe that the learning objectives simply are not met and some of the information provided is inaccurate, irrelevant or incomplete.
As such the ATP does not feel that this module is of sufficiently good quality to meet the learning needs of healthcare professionals supporting mothers and babies with feeding issues associated with tongue-tie. We are also concerned by the sponsorship of the module by Lansinoh, who are not WHO Code complaint, and the accompanying advertisement for their nipple shields, when nipple shield can seriously impair milk transfer in tongue-tied babies.
We suggest that healthcare professionals seek education on this issue from other sources.
Training opportunities are listed on our website here https://www.tongue-tie.org.uk/Tongue-tie-training-faqs.html
Sarah Oakley BA (Hons) RN IBCLC, ATP Chair