Breastfeeding… You Can Do It!
Is breastfeeding important? Does it really make a difference? Read below to find out why Louisiana mothers chose breastfeeding for their babies.
These real Louisiana moms decided to breastfeed their babies because:
“I knew it would be best for my child’s health” (Tesla)
“A lot of people told me it would be the hardest thing to do—but I love a challenge!” (Tiffany)
“I heard a breastfed baby is a happy baby!” (Tiffany)
“Knowing he’s getting the best for his brain and immune systems” (Tesla)
“He’s hardly ever sick—He’s never had an ear infection” (Heather)
“My son was born premature-but I knew it would be good breastfeed so he could be as healthy as possible” (Brittany)
These moms are right! Breastmilk is healthier for babies:
Louisiana mothers also find these benefits:
“I don’t have to mix milk and it’s great on the go-I don’t have to worry about spoiled milk!” (Shawandy)
“It’s cheaper—and easier—and helped me get back to my pre-pregnancy weight!” (Heather)
“It seemed like it would be fun, and I knew I’d have a lot of bonding time” (Teanna)
“The one-on-one time that me and my daughter share together…where we can focus more on each other” (Tiffany)
“Knowing that I was 100% responsible for his growth, and nutrition, and well-being!” (Jessica)
These moms are right again! Breastfeeding is practical, and has many benefits for mothers, too:
It’s not always easy!
“A lot of people think it’s painful—but I say go for it!” (Courtni)
“When in public, some people stop and stare” (Shawandy)
“Getting him to latch on” (Teanna)
“Sometimes pumping is hard” (Tesla)
But help is available:
Family and friends can make a difference:
“I chose to breastfeed because I saw my mom do it” (Shawandy)
“My mother-in-law convinced me to try it” (LaQuanta)
“My aunt breastfed for six months” (Heather)
Dads—You are very important!
“My husband didn’t give up-he was very supportive” (Jessica)
“Once I told the baby’s daddy about the benefits, he said ‘let’s go for it.’ He watched videos and has been there with me all along” (Courtni)
Louisiana Dads say:
“She wanted to do it—and it’s free and healthy!” Casey
“It felt good to be there for her—I felt like I was taking the dad’s role—it felt important to be there for her” (Jason)
How long should I breastfeed?
That decision is best made by you and your baby. However, most medical organizations, like the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), recommend the following:
IMPORTANT: If you are returning to work or school, talk with your employer about bringing your baby to work, or expressing milk while you are at work so your baby can continue to receive your milk. Get more tips about breastfeeding and returning to work and talking with your employer here.
These Louisiana moms say:
“Give it a try—don’t let anyone make the decision for you…it is a blessing to those who ‘stick it out’” (Tiffany)
“It’s the most rewarding thing you can do for your baby” (Tesla)
“It’s the best choice I made for my baby” (Shawandy)
“Go for it—it’s a lot healthier for the baby, and more convenient for you!” (Courtni)
“I definitely suggest breastfeeding. It’s the best option for your child. It’s not always easy, but well worth it!” (Brittany)
“I would tell other mothers to follow what they believe in; don’t let others bring you down. Keep your head up. You can do anything if you put your mind to it!” LaQuanta
These quotes are from mothers and fathers who volunteered to participate in the Landscape of Breastfeeding Support photo project, sponsored by the US Breastfeeding Coalition and supported by the Louisiana Breastfeeding Coalition and the Louisiana Nurse Family Partnership program. We thank them for their willingness to share their experiences with other families who are considering breastfeeding. Photos by Addie Imseis.
Some of the information above was adapted from @ 2010 International Lactation Consultant Association. Written by Cathy Carothers for World Breastfeeding Week Action Kit, “Breastfeeding: Just 10 Steps! The Baby-Friendly Way.”
1Ip S, Chung M, Raman G, Chew P, Magula N, DeVine D, et al. Breastfeeding and maternal and infant health outcomes in developed countries: evidence report/technology assessment no. 153. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; 2007. AHRQ Publication No. 07-E007.