New Moms Breastfeeding in Record Numbers
ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 20 /PRNewswire/ - It's been well-documented for quite some time that breastfeeding is beneficial to babies and mothers, offering many protective health benefits. These range from providing the essential nutrients and antibodies babies need to develop physically and neurologically, to lowering a mother's risk of certain cancers. So why do so many women stop breastfeeding before the recommended 12 months? According to a new national survey, the top reasons why new mothers stopped breastfeeding were they felt like they were not producing enough milk (47%), followed by difficulties getting the baby to latch on (33%) and work-related issues (29%).
The survey was conducted for Lansinoh, a leading provider of breastfeeding products for mothers and babies, by American Baby Magazine, and found, among other things, that 85% of expectant mothers (those who work and those who stay at home) planned to breastfeed their babies.
"Despite record numbers of women who leave the hospital breastfeeding their newborns, breastfeeding rates at six and 12 months are actually much lower as many women either stop breastfeeding within the first three months or begin to supplement with formula and solid foods when they really don't need to," says Sue Huml, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and member of the Lansinoh Breastfeeding Advisory Board.
In fact, according to the Lansinoh survey, 30% of breastfeeding new mothers weaned their babies by 12 weeks. "This survey hopes to shed light on the obstacles that mothers in the United States face when they are intent on breastfeeding," adds Huml. "Once we have more insight into the real and perceived hurdles women face, we can look for ways to be more supportive of breastfeeding mothers so they can continue nursing after they leave the hospital and for the recommended 12 months. Breastfeeding is the most natural and loving thing a woman can do for her baby, yet as natural as it is, it isn't always easy and can be challenging."
Below are key findings from the Lansinoh Breastfeeding survey:
Why Do They Stop Breastfeeding?
- 30% of respondents who gave birth in the past 12 months breastfed their baby but stopped
- Top 10 reasons they stopped:
- Felt like not producing enough milk - 47%
- Difficulties getting baby to latch on - 33%
- Work related issues - 29%
- Sore or cracked nipples - 22%
- Too physically and emotionally draining - 22%
- Couldn't always nurse from the breast and didn't like to pump - 21%
- Felt it was an appropriate time to wean baby - 10%
- Couldn't eat/drink enough - 9%
- Too many other family/social obligations - 9%
- Baby got teeth - 7%
Working and Breastfeeding:
- Of those surveyed, 48% are full-time stay at home moms and 47% work outside the home; 5% work part-time at home
- Of the 29% of those who stopped breastfeeding due to work related issues, 75% of experienced moms cite commitments/scheduling as the major work constraint compared to 43% of first-time mothers
- 62% of first time mothers felt there was "No special/private place to pump" compared to 50% of experienced moms
Perceived reasons how work affected ability to breastfeed/provide breastmilk for new baby (first-time and experienced):
- No special place to pump - 57%
- Work commitments/schedule frequently conflicted with pumping - 57%
- Didn't like pumping away from home - 39%
- No place to store pumped milk - 27%
- Couldn't eat/drink enough - 20%
- Wasn't pumping enough to satisfy baby - 7%
- Boss/other employees made it difficult for mother - 5%
- Pumping negatively affected colleague/client perception of mother - 5%
What New Moms Are Thinking:
- 42% indicated they would like family/friends to be supportive of breastfeeding
- 36% are determined to breastfeed for recommended 12 months
- 30% would like help from the pediatrician's office
- 26% would like employer/colleagues to be supportive of breastfeeding
- 21% feel they get a lot of unsolicited advice on how much their baby is getting to eat via breastfeeding
- 18% would like to participate in support group with other breastfeeding moms
New and expecting moms can visit http://www.lansinoh.com/ for more information about Lansinoh products or to register for the new weekly "Nurture Note," an e-message that provides breastfeeding tips and words of encouragement and support from the Lansinoh experts, as well as a free sample of the Lansinoh Disposable Nursing Pads (while supplies last).
Lansinoh Laboratories was founded by a breastfeeding mother more than 20 years ago to support families who choose to nurture and nourish their children naturally. Lansinoh offers a complete line of breastfeeding products, including the safest and purest form of lanolin designed for use by breastfeeding mothers to relieve nipple soreness, unique nursing pads, cleansing cloths and milk storage bags. Source: Lansinoh Laboratories
CONTACT: Laura Giardina, or Emily DeLizza, both of Robin Leedy