Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


More support needed for breastfeeding mums

More support needed for breastfeeding mums

Thousands of New Zealand mums are not breastfeeding because they don't get enough help, according to the country’s leading breastfeeding support group.

La Leche League New Zealand, a mother-to-mother support organisation, says more emphasis needs to be placed on helping mums breastfeed their babies after discharge from hospital.

“Our maternity services are getting better and better at implementing comprehensive breastfeeding policies, but more has to be done to encourage and help mothers when they get home. We cannot hope for breastfeeding to become the norm if we do not give mothers the ongoing help they need,” says LLLNZ spokesperson Lisa Manning.

“La Leche League New Zealand has 150 accredited Leaders throughout the country but many pregnant women haven't heard of us. We need hospitals and birthing centres to routinely refer women to available breastfeeding support groups if we are to increase breastfeeding rates,” she adds.

The appeal comes ahead of World Breastfeeding Week at the start of next month. This year’s theme celebrates the 20th anniversary of UNICEF’s Innocenti Declaration which called for the implementation of the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative. The Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding and exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life are important aspects of the Baby Friendly Initiative. New Zealand has over 90 percent (72 out of 78) of its maternity facilities accredited as Baby Friendly, which equates to nearly 90 percent of New Zealand births occurring in accredited facilities.1

As a result exclusive breastfeeding rates have increased significantly with nearly 90 percent1 of New Zealand babies being exclusively breastfed on discharge from a Baby Friendly accredited facility. However this soon falls to 51.5 percent of all babies at six weeks, 39 percent at three months, and 14 percent at six months (2007 data).2

Each year La Leche League New Zealand makes 18,000 contacts with mothers through its network of mother-to-mother support groups and its telephone helpline. Over 6,000 more contacts each year are made by Leaders with health professionals and members of the public. La Leche League New Zealand liaises with government agencies and has input into policy and document reviews voicing the needs of breastfeeding women.

Recent government campaigns have raised awareness of the importance of breastfeeding, and statistics show that the vast majority of women intend to breastfeed. But once at home with their new babies, mothers are often without adequate support that reinforces good strategies or provides information to avoid breastfeeding problems.

“Widespread promotion of breastfeeding without timely and sufficient support leads to breastfeeding ending prematurely and to upset and disillusioned mothers, who may take their anger out on breastfeeding advocates,” Lisa says.

La Leche League urges all midwives, well child nurses, practice nurses, GPs, family members and friends to encourage pregnant and breastfeeding women to make contact with a mother to mother breastfeeding support group. There are 55 La Leche League Groups throughout New Zealand and many community health services (for example that work with Maori, Pacific, rural and young parents) are establishing mother to mother breastfeeding support groups through La Leche League’s Breastfeeding Peer Counsellor Programme. La Leche League believes that all mothers are entitled to information and support so they can achieve satisfactory experiences of breastfeeding their babies.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Scoop Review Of Books: Trading Places

Greg Clydesdale, a lecturer in business at Lincoln University, has written a comprehensive account of global trade from the seventh century to modern times. More>>

Sheep: Shearing Record Smashed In Hawke’s Bay

Three shearers gathered from around New Zealand have smashed a World record by 264 sheep despite the heat, the pumiced sheep of inland Hawke’s Bay and a year’s wool weighing an average of over 3.5kg a sheep. More>>

ALSO:

Carrie Fisher: Hollywood In-Breeding & The Velocity Of Being - Binoy Kampmark

There was always going to be a good deal of thick drama around Carrie Fisher, by her own confession, a product of Hollywood in-breeding. Her parents, Debbie Reynolds and the crooner Eddie Fisher, provided ample material for the gossip columns in a marriage breakup after Eddie sped away with Elizabeth Taylor. More>>

  • Image: Tracey Nearmy / EPA
  • Gordon Campbell: On The Best Albums Of 2016

    OK, I’m not even going to try and rationalise this surrender to a ‘best of’ listicle. Still…maybe there is an argument for making some semblance of narrative order out of a year that brought us Trump, Brexit and the deaths of Prince, David Bowie, Leonard Cohen and Alan Vega, who I missed just as much as the Big Three. So without further ado….oh, but first a word from the sponsor More>>

    Emojis: World’s First Māori Emoji App Launched

    It’s here - the world’s first Māori emoji app Emotiki has landed just in time for summer roadtrips and santa stockings, with 200 Māori and Kiwi cultural icons for people to share their kiwiana moments with each other and the world. More>>

    ALSO:

    Howard Davis: Album Of The Year - Van Morrison's 'Keep Me Singing'

    2016 was a grand year for Van The Man - The Belfast Cowboy turned 71, received a knighthood, and reissued an expanded set of soul-fired live recordings from 1973 ('It's Too Late to Stop Now'). In the game for 53 years now, Morrison's albums consistently open new windows into the heart and soul of one of the most enigmatic figures in modern music. More>>

    Get More From Scoop

     
     

    LATEST HEADLINES

     
     
     
     
    Culture
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news