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Alexandra Shew NFSC 360 Julie Schneider March 12, 2013 Lactation Interview Part one

For my lactation interview I chose to interview my mother Dianne Shew. Dianne is a 55 year old white female with three children. She began breastfeeding when she was 28 years old with my oldest sister Chelsea. Her first child was born in 1985 and is now 28 years old. Her next pregnancy resulted in twins, a boy and a girl who were born in 1990. We are now 22 years old and both attend Chico State. Having a medical background my mother said, it was never an option for her to use formula when it came to her children. Her main reasons for breastfeeding were healthier babies with fewer illnesses, less colic, a lower possibility of allergies and the overall bonding she felt was important for the babies. My mothers first trial at breastfeeding went well; she experienced no problems and enjoyed the time with Chelsea my older sister. She would pump milk and use small bottles so Chelseas dad could also take a turn at feeding the baby and having the experience of nurturing their child. Upon learning she was pregnant with twins; her doctor discouraged her from breastfeeding saying it was impossible to produce enough milk for two babies our size. She felt so discouraged with this news that she cried on the way home from the doctors visit. My mom felt so strongly about breastfeeding and the importance of breastfeeding that she decided to at least try for a few weeks and see what happened. She was offered formula for the twins in the hospital but declined. She was discouraged from trying to feed both babies and was told to check in more frequently with her Pediatrician to be sure her twins were gaining enough weight. My brother and I were full term healthy babies weighing 7lbs, 15 oz and 6lbs, 15 oz when born. At each doctor visit we registered 90% on the weight scale. The twins were breastfed for

approximately 14 months which was successful with no additional formula ever being offered. This event resulted in her being an advocate for breastfeeding and convincing many mothers that they should at least try and not listen to anyone who tries to discourage them. When it came to changing her diet my mother did not change her eating habits with any of her three children, with the exception of leaving out green onions and alcohol. Only one case of colic was remembered between the three children. She made a conscious decision to stop breastfeeding when the children were able to sip from a cup and eat solid baby food. All three kids were around 14 months when weaned. No physical problems were experience while breastfeeding. Although my mother did remember that both times it took a few days to get use to the process of breastfeeding. A little soreness was the worst of her problems. Dianne received support from family and friends on her decision to breastfeed. The main issue was having milk available for her family or friends if they were to watch the children. With the twins it required an electric pump that was used when she knew she was going to be away. The milk was stored in the freezer until needed. Although this part of breastfeeding took planning, overall she felt that this method was easier as well as better for the babies and worth the time and effort that came along with pumping milk. Although my mom did not work outside the house, she had two friends who did. At times she would babysit for them and use bottles of milk they had previously pumped and frozen. This method worked well and the babies had no problem taking a bottle with their mothers milk in it. Being a stay at home mom, she was able to feed the babies in privacy for the most part. However she did travel quite a bit including riding on airplanes. She never felt uncomfortable in any situation and used discretion when feeding in public. My mother said it was quick, easy and efficient.

At about 6 months for all her children foods were introduced slowly. My mother started with rice cereal both times when introducing solid foods into her childrens diets. It did seem to help fill the babies up and was offered at first only at night. All the babies slept thru the night starting at about 2-3 weeks of age. As she introduced new foods the demand for milk was less and less. She found she had to breastfeed fewer times a day and for a briefer period of time. Near the end of breastfeeding it seemed to be more for comfort for the babies rather than for need for nourishment. My mothers three children grew up with few illnesses and no allergies that are known. She attributes this to their healthy start resulting from being breastfed as infants. An advocate for breastfeeding, my mom said that unless there is a medical reason for not providing a baby with breast milk every mother should at least try to breast feed their children. Even a few weeks of breastfeeding can help establish a healthy beginning for any baby.

Part two Rates for breastfeeding in the U.S hit its all time low in the 1950s and 1960s. With womens attitudes changing about breastfeeding and the practice being considered old-fashion and a little disgusting to most people really took an effect of women breast feeding rates. Breastfeeding became known as something that was practiced by the uneducated women lacking temperament of lower classes. During this period of decline the breastfeeding rates began to reach levels below 30%. When comparing how breastfeeding rates vary by race you can see a relatively big difference between Black and African American women compared to Hispanic or White women. In early postpartum periods of breastfeeding Black and African American women only have a baseline of 45%, while Hispanics have a baseline of 66% and White women are at 68 %. The 2010 goal in early postpartum period was set at 75%. When hitting the six month period of breastfeeding with their children Black and African women are only at 19% while Hispanics and White women are at 28% and 31%. The 2010 goal for breastfeeding babies at 6 months was 50%. From these results we can see that Black and African American women are a ways behind in numbers of women who breastfeed their children compared to the Hispanic and White women. Based on the Healthy People 2010 Breastfeeding Objectives for the nation the main objective is to increase the proportion of mothers who breastfeed their babies. The initial Healthy People 2010 breastfeeding goals were established in 2000 targeting these following categories: 75% initiation, 50% at 6 months, and 25% at 12 months. If I was going to improve or develop a plan that would improve community breastfeeding participation rates using the Healthy People 2010 Breastfeeding Objective I would first begin to look into the barriers of what lactating mothers have when it comes to breastfeeding their children. I think one of the main barriers

women have when it comes to breastfeeding is going back to work to soon. I believe among every work place there should be a set of guidelines that need to be allowed for mothers who are breastfeeding. For example, there should be a paid maternity leave for all employed mothers for at least the first six months to encourage exclusive breastfeeding. Also within all work places all employers should provide support to lactating mothers and private facilities for mothers to have access to their babies. By eliminating some of these barriers that mothers have when it comes to work versus breastfeeding their children for a longer period of time maybe we can find a way to improve our breastfeeding rates among American women. Some current resources available in the Chico community to gain knowledge about breastfeeding and the benefits of breastfeeding are first a program called WIC (Women Infant Children). This program is a federally-funded health and nutrition program which offers support to women who are pregnant, breastfeeding, or just have a baby. Within this program (WIC) has created a group called Breastfeeding Peer Counseling (BPC) which offers support and education about breastfeeding. Within this program they really support breastfeeding your infant and really try to encourage mothers to at least try it out. Children should have the best, healthiest start to life. Studies show that any amount of breastfeeding is beneficial and results in greater protection from illness, a reduced incidence of obesity as well as many other benefits for the baby as well as the mother. Everyone needs to support the efforts to increase the incidence of breastfeeding among women so we can hopefully one day meet our Healthy Peoples goal for breastfeeding.