Breastfeeding and Maternal Care

Provide opportunities and supports for breastfeeding and maternal health.

Learn about the co-benefits of Breastfeeding and Maternal Care below.

Strategies

Breastfeeding Friendly Childcare

Provide support for breastfeeding mothers and employees in early care and education centers through breastfeeding friendly policies and supportive environments.


Breastfeeding Friendly Maternity Care

Implement maternity care practices that support breastfeeding, including steps toward Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative designation, provider training, and increased access for mothers to peer and professional support.


Breastfeeding Friendly Public Spaces

Make public spaces more breastfeeding friendly through environmental changes and policy education.


Breastfeeding Friendly Workplaces

Provide support for breastfeeding mothers in the workplace through breastfeeding friendly policies and supportive environments.


Healthy Lifestyles for Mothers

Provide interventions, referrals, and education on healthy lifestyles and appropriate weight gain to support the health of mothers before, during, and after pregnancy.


Co-benefits

Breastfeeding & Maternal Care co-benefits include:

Child Health Outcomes: Breastfeeding has been associated with lower risk of infection and lower risk of sudden infant death syndrome. It may also positively impact other long-term health outcomes in children, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, eczema, type-2 diabetes, and asthma.

Maternal Health Outcomes: Breastfeeding has potential health benefits for mothers, including lowered incidences of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, type-2 diabetes, and post-natal depression.

Financial: Formula feeding can cost hundreds of dollars per year.

Economic: Families may be more likely to choose hospitals with Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative designation.

Worksite Cost Savings: Breastfeeding employees tend to miss work less often than those who formula feed and they also have lower health care costs. Worksites with supportive breastfeeding environments and policies may also have other cost savings, such as lower turnover rates, higher productivity and loyalty, and positive public relations.

Health Benefits: The Healthy Lifestyles for Mothers strategy encourages physical activity. In addition to reducing obesity, an increase in physical activity can also reduce the risks of the following health related problems:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Diabetes
  • Breast cancer
  • Dementia
  • Depression
  • Colon cancer
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