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Lianne Straus - Breastfeeding Lead
Public Health - NHS North Somerset - 01275 885157
Breast milk is the best form of nutrition for infants, and exclusive breastfeeding is recommended for the first six months (26 weeks) of an infant’s life. Thereafter, breastfeeding should continue for as long as the mother and baby wish, while gradually introducing the baby to a more varied diet.
Infants who are not breastfed are more likely to:
- have respiratory and ear infections
- have infections requiring hospitalization
- become obese in later childhood, which means they are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes
- have slightly higher levels of blood pressure and blood cholesterol in adulthood.
For mothers, breastfeeding reduces the risk of:
- breast cancer
- ovarian cancer
- hip fractures
78% of women in England breastfeed their babies after birth. However, a third of these women have stopped soon after so that only 50% of all new mothers are breastfeeding by week 6 and 26% by 6 months.
NHS North Somerset and Weston Area Health Trust are committed to becoming baby friendly in hospital and community settings so that the best standards are implemented for infant feeding.
North Somerset has a range of breastfeeding support groups where others mums will be on hand to share their experiences and tips. Groups will also have support from a breastfeeding counselor, midwife or health visitor if you need more help.
The Essential guide to breastfeeding is a great resources for any questions you may have before and during breastfeeding
National Breastfeeding helpline 0300 100 0212
Why not join the North Somerset Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme. Signing up means that every woman that has a baby in North Somerset will know your business is breastfeeding friendly. You’ll also receive posters and stickers to display in your venue.
UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative www.babyfriendly.org.uk