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Liza Marie Felici, MS, CCC-SLP, CLC

The SLP for Breastfeeding Babies

Specialized in overcoming infant feeding challenges for babies 3 months and older

If you've ever wondered,
"Will feeding and meal times always be a struggle?"

I offer you HOPE and a PLAN.

Helping you create positive feeding experiences—and experience JOY with feeding—is my #1 passion.

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(You probably have lots of questions.)
I'm here to help answer them!
Let's get started...

Why does my baby need feeding therapy?

Great question! Babies sometimes need simple yet highly specific oral therapy in order to reach their full feeding potential. Here are some possible reasons:

  • Struggle with issues related to lip/ tongue tie

  • Failed swallow study

  • Poor growth

  • Frequent coughing, gagging, and/ or choking during feeding sessions

  • Fatigue with feeds (outside of typical newborn sleepiness)

  • Your baby has a medical condition and you want to breastfeed/ give breastmilk

  • Frequent crying and pulling away from bottle or breast when hungry

  • Frequent spitting up and/ or vomiting

  • Excessive drooling AND open mouth posture

  • Wet voice after feeding

  • Poor suck-swallow-breathe coordination after 3 months of age

  • Not meeting appropriate developmental milestones:

    • Food stored/stuck in cheeks

    • Pushing food out of mouth frequently after 8 months old

    • Difficulty with straw drinking at 8-9 months old

    • Difficulty with open cup drinking after 12 months

  • Picky-eater, or limited food preferences

  • Received primary nutrition via feeding tube

What makes you different from other feeding therapists?

Not all feeding therapists are trained to prevent, assess, diagnose and treat infant feeding disorders. The SLP practice is broad, and working with a professional who has dedicated time to learn about feeding disorders, specifically, infant feeding disorders and has experience with breastfeeding babies is the best way to resolve feeding issues. (You wouldn't want to work with an SLP that only treats speech disorders in adults, for example.)

In addition to being a licensed Speech-Language Pathologist (CCC-SLP) with a specialty in pediatric feeding therapy, Liza is also a Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC) in training to become an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC). Her feeding therapy skills are further enhanced by her continuing education in Beckman Oral Motor Protocol, and the SOS Approach to Feeding, to name a few.

HAPPY BELLIES MAKE HAPPY BABIES

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About Liza Marie Felici,
MS, CCC-SLP, CLC

IBCLC Candidate

Many parents come to Liza after exhausting other options and describe her as a “magician” and “lifesaver” for her unique ability to transform tearful feeding experiences to joyful ones.

 

For over 10 years, she has walked alongside parents and children to help solve complex pediatric feeding challenges, restoring hope and bringing joy to feeding times. Through her compassionate, patient, proactive, and evidence-based approach, she equips families with the skills and confidence they need to feed successfully and independently.

"Because everyone deserves to eat well and communicate their basic wants and needs. This is why I got into this profession."

Liza is a licensed Speech-Language Pathologist and holds her ASHA CCC with advanced training in early intervention practices and treatment for infant feeding disorders. She holds a Master's degree from the University of Texas - Dallas for Speech-Language Pathology and a Bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin - Madison for Communication Disorders.

 

Before becoming a provider at Milk Diva, she worked at Parkland Hospital in Dallas, skilled nursing facilities, in home health, and at outpatient clinics including Viva Pediatrics and Capital Therapy Group here in Austin.

 

She is working towards earning her IBCLC and will have acquired over 500 hours of hands-on practicum training by the end of 2022.

 

When not working, you’ll find Liza training for a race or reading a good book while snuggled with her cat, Woogy. She enjoys attending cultural and sporting events in addition to traveling the world. Liza adores her niece and nephews.

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"A magic unicorn in the infant feeding world"

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Naiomi Catron, RNC-OB, IBCLC
Milk Diva Founder

Liza is an exceptional infant feeding therapist, who has the innate ability to make a person feel nurtured and heard. She is immediately set apart as a Speech Language Pathologist by her advance training, experience and continuing education, which has given her a unique perspective in addition to a wide variety of skills, tools and techniques to overcome feeding challenges. Her warm, gentle and kind spirit coupled by her Swiss army knife set of skills, makes her a magic unicorn in the infant feeding world.

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The right knowledge and early treatment can help you avoid...

  • Costly visits to multiple providers 

  • Negative relationship with meal times 

  • Temporary solutions with no long-term mastery

  • Feeding issues leading to health issues:

    • Digestive Issues

    • Poor nutrition

    • Upper respiratory infections

    • Liquid/ food getting into lungs (aspiration)

  • Social problems

I only wish we had found [Liza] in breastfeeding/infanthood when my son's eating issues truly started.
 
- Lindsey E.

Book a Feeding Therapy Session

Let's end the guesswork and the worries...TOGETHER.

Successful feeding therapy starts with proper evaluation. Your first step is to meet with a Milk Diva lactation consultant and/ or get a referral for feeding therapy.

 

During our initial feeding therapy session, I will complete a full assessment and you will receive a custom treatment plan based on your baby's feeding goals and your family's unique dynamics.

 

In every session, you will have a safe space to learn and become comfortable performing therapeutic skills so you can continue to create joyful feeding experiences at home!

 

1

evaluation with a lactation consultant

What to expect (0-3 months):

 

  • 75-90 min appointment

  • Infant & maternal physical assessment

  • Feeding assessment

  • Explanation of findings 

  • Recommendations

  • ​Customized Care Plan

  • Referrals, if appropriate

If you were referred by a Milk Diva lactation consultant, you can skip this step.

2

Initial SLP Evaluation

What to expect (3+ months):

 

  • 60 min appointment

  • Full oral motor assessment

  • Feeding assessment via breast and/or bottle

  • Diagnosis

  • Explanation of findings

  • Leave with a co-created plan of care

  • Referrals, if appropriate

3

Follow-up SLP Sessions

What to expect (ongoing, as needed):

  • 30-60 min appointment

  • Feeding observation/re-assessment 

  • Assess oral motor progress

  • Technique refinement

Liza will recommend session length

"So thankful for all she has done for us"

Liza is the best speech therapist without question. She has been part of our family for the past 6 years. Liza is the best because she is so ambitious, loving, compassionate, funny and easy to work with. She has helped us navigate so many unique obstacles with our little one.... We happily consider her a family member in our home. So thankful for all she has done for us.

 

— Love, The Utley Family

Have questions for Liza?

Please email liza@milkdiva.com.