Breastfeeding: Making the Decision

Are you looking to start breastfeeding and not sure if it is right for you? Maybe you are concerned with possible challenges. Let’s see if we can answer some of your questions.

Why should I breastfeed my baby?

Breastfeeding is a rewarding experience that can help you and your baby be healthier.  The antibodies in breast milk help protect your baby from germs and illnesses. Breast milk is nutritious, easy to digest and fights disease.

How long do I need to breastfeed and how often?

For the first six months of life, infants should drink only breastmilk. It is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics, that you breastfeed for at least 12 months and as long as you and your baby would like. Your breastfed newborn will eat approximately every 1.5-3 hours.

How do I prepare for breastfeeding?                                                                                                                                    

Before your baby is born, try to learn as much as possible. Be sure to check in regularly with your doctor, ask questions and read books on breastfeeding. Your local library is a great resource for free materials.  Involve your partner, family and friends in your breastfeeding plan to gain as much support as possible.

What if I have a hard time breastfeeding when I return to work?

Don’t worry; you are not the only one. Before returning to work, discuss with your employer accommodations that can be made for breastfeeding mothers in the workplace. The U.S. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires employers to provide time to pump at work in a private place that is not a bathroom.

What if I don’t have family support? Who can help me?

MomsFirst is a great resource to learn more about breastfeeding. A Community Health Worker is a knowledgeable source of support for you and your baby. Don’t have an OB/GYN? Visit our MomsFirst website http://momsfirst.org/new-page-2/ to find a prenatal care doctor near you.  Need support while on the go? Visit https://www.text4baby.org/  and download the Text4Baby app to get free text messages to keep you and your baby healthy.

Breastfeeding is a personal choice. As you become aware of the benefits of breastfeeding be sure to make a choice based upon what is best for you and your family. While we advocate for breastfeeding, we are here to support you no matter what decision you make!