Mama Knows Breast

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World Breastfeeding Week

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World Breastfeeding Week is right around the corner.  The official dates are August 1st through the 7th.  But this annual event has more or less morphed into Breastfeeding Awareness Month.  There are events going on all throughout August (and even September), nationally and internationally.  Here’s a link on the La Leche League site to see what might be happening near you.

Each year, World Breastfeeding Week has a theme. This year, it’s “Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding.”  There are videos to go with each of these ten steps:

Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding: Every facility providing maternity services and care for newborn infants should:
1. Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care
2. Train all health care staff in skills necessary to implement this policy.
3. Inform all pregnant mothers about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.
4. Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within a half-hour of birth.
5. Show mothers how to breastfeed, and how to maintain lactation even if they should be
separated from their infants.
6. Give newborn infants no food or drink other than breastmilk unless medically
7. Practice rooming-in – allow mothers and infants to remain together – 24 hours a day.
8. Encourage breastfeeding on demand.
9. Give no artificial teats or pacifiers (also called dummies or soothers) to breastfeeding infants.
10.Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital or clinic.

Feel free to share your plans on how you are marking World Breastfeeding Week.

Common Breastfeeding Questions

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The website Pregnancy & Baby has a great piece on some common breastfeeding questions.  I’m quoted in it, but that’s not why you should read it.  There’s great information from child care experts, including a lactation consultant, doula and nurse.  Here’s an excerpt:

How do I know if my baby is getting enough milk?

“This is the number one question new mothers ask,” says Irene Zoppi, certified lactation consultant and clinical education specialist for Medela, and there are easy ways to monitor that your baby is getting enough:

  1. You should be able to see and/or hear your baby swallowing.
  2. Your breasts will feel softer after baby feeds.
  3. By day five, baby should have 6-8 wet diapers and at least 2-3 soiled diapers a day.
  4. Your baby is gaining weight and following a normal growth pattern.

“Overall,” says Zoppi, “mothers should trust that their bodies will do what they were designed to do in the providing enough food for their baby.”

How To Breastfeed Twins

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This is a hilarious post from Kelcey at The Mama Bird Diaries blog.  She describes breastfeeding twins.  The ultimate balancing act:

Hold the first baby like a football (Studies have shown this won’t actually increase your interest in the game of football but it may increase your love of “Friday Night Lights.”)

Get the first baby latched on to your right breast.

Now pick up the second baby. Hold her like a football and get her latched on to your left breast.

Unfortunately, the first baby will have somehow come off your right breast. Get that baby latched on again. Of course, now the second baby has come off. This pattern will continue for a few minutes. Finally, you will have them both latched on. You will weep with joy.

But now one of the babies has now fallen asleep after exactly one minute of nursing. Attempt to wake him. Remove some of his clothes. Blow on his head. Tickle his feet. Sing him Lady Gaga. Threaten to make him watch “Couples Retreat.”  He will become more alert after the “Couples Retreat” threat, even though you are obviously bluffing. Babies can be so gullible. Get him nursing again.  Click here for more.

Help the Group Best For Babes Win a $20k Grant

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The breastfeeding advocacy group Best For Babes is in the running to receive a grant from Chase Bank’s Community Giving program.  To learn more about BfB’s mission, click here to get to their website.

And to vote for Bfb, go to this page on Facebook.

Share Your Opinion: Celebrities and Breastfeeding

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I’m working on a story for a magazine right now about celebrities and breastfeeding… and I’d like to hear your opinions.

I’ve done many posts on this site about celebs who are breastfeeding.  Remember Angelina Jolie’s breastfeeding photo on the cover of W Magazine?  Or Julie Bowen talking about using the double football hold to breastfeed her twins?  Or how about the pics of Maggie Gyllenhaal breastfeeding in public?

So what do you think of these stories?  Why are so many celebrity moms talking about breastfeeding these days?  Is this a new trend?  And what sort of impact can this have on the general public?   Is there a downside, if any, to all of this boob talk?

Kourtney Kardashian Talks About Breastfeeding

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Even if you’re like me, and you’ve never watched the shows Kourtney and Khloe Take Miami, or Keeping up with the Kardashians, you probably have heard the names Kourtney, Khloe and Kim tossed around.  And maybe you’ve heard a bit Kourtney’s views on breastfeeding.  You can read her post about it here, on the Celebrity Baby Blog on People Magazine.  Or you can visit her own site.  Here’s an excerpt:

Each mother has her own personal view about breast feeding. Some choose not to do at all, while others, like myself, are all about it. For me it just felt like the right thing to do, and has been the most amazing bonding experience.

Mason is now six months old and has only been fed breast milk up until this week! I just started incorporating solid foods into his diet. We began with a mixture of rice cereal, oatmeal cereal and mixed grain cereal with some breast milk added. When I introduced it to him, he seemed confused — but ready and excited for it!

I still want to continue breastfeeding for maybe another six months or as long as Mason still wants it. I’ve heard that some babies just get over it and stop nursing. But personally, I’m still loving it. I love the bonding time, love that it’s natural and what your body is made to do, love the benefits for his body and mine. I find it to be such an amazing womanly thing.

Donate Umbilical Cord Blood to See If You Can Help a 22 Year Old With Leukemia

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Mandi Schwartz’s doctors are determined to find her a bone marrow or cord blood donor within the next two months.  Mandi has leukemia and it’s a race against time to find the 22 year old Yale student and hockey player a match.  Here are links to two news stories about Mandi.  ABC News and ESPN.

There are so many ways you can help.  Go to Mandi’s website to learn about how you can get tested to see if your bone marrow or cord blood is a match.  You can also help spread the word through Twitter and Facebook. Here’s information on how to donate cord blood.

And from her website:

This is an emergency effort for the benefit of someone in imminent danger of dying because he or she does not have a donor. As such, we will accept cord blood donations from anyone, anyplace and at any time who has more than a reasonable chance to provide the needed HLA type. We are also waving the standard 32-week rule and accepting cord blood donations from women who are more than 32 weeks pregnant. So please disregard this limitation during the enrollment process.

Donors whose cord blood is determined not to match the person-in-need are given two choices:

  • We can provide our Hero’s Discount for your kindness and you can privately bank your cord blood with Natasha’s Place at a discounted price of just $999.
  • You can donate your cord blood to our public bank and we will list it in the global registry for others who may someday need it for a stem cell transplant or research – this is an absolutely free service and it doesn’t cost you anything to donate your cord blood.

Your Pictures: Breastfeeding in Scotland

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June 26, 2010

I’m starting a new feature here, on Mama Knows Breast.  It’s called “Your Pictures.”  You can send me your pictures related to breastfeeding… pics of you and your baby, pics of your favorite breastfeeding related product.  You name it. I’ll credit you, and if you have a blog, link back to your site.

So for the first picture, I have a photo that my friend Tony Dolan took while on vacation.  This picture was taken on June 26, in Glasgow, Scotland.  Tony thinks it was Buchanan street.  The banner says Glasgow Welcomes Breastfeeding.  And you can jsut barely see the international breastfeeding icon on the left hand corner.

If anyone can further identify this banner… maybe it was for a conference…let me know.

Now, go to your photo archives, or take a new picture, and send it to me.

The Boobie Beanie: Infant Hats That Look Like a Breast!

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Thanks to my cousin Tamra for sending me this link on Etsy. Your baby can wear this hat while feeding and it looks like a breast.

The designer Sara says:

This is a completely hand-made by me, crocheted infant hat made to look like a breast when worn by a baby/toddler/child, while nursing! It’s made of 100% organic cotton, and is very soft and warm. You have the option of a pink nipple or a brown one and I can also make it in a different skin tone, or size, if you’d like.

Best For Babes Ad Appears in USA Today

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Congratulations to Best For Babes, a breastfeeding advocacy group. Their awesome ad recently appeared in USA Today, reaching 2.2 million readers in the greater metropolitan areas of Los Angeles, Chicago and New York.   Bettina Forbes and Danielle Rigg started BfB in 2007 to raise awareness about the benefits of breastfeeding and combat some of the cultural barriers that can make it hard for some women to succeed at breastfeeding. From the press release about the ad campaign:

“Most moms want to breastfeed, and don’t realize how they are being undermined by the very institutions that should be helping them.  Whether they breastfeed for 2 weeks, 2 months, 2 years or not at all, they deserve to achieve their personal goals.   We’re clearing through the information clutter–much of it misleading–and are showing them how to succeed and who they can trust, much like a personal trainer or nutritionist would for someone who wants to get fit,” says Best for Babes Co-Founder Bettina Forbes. 

The ad, which is part of a series of arresting visuals,  is the first of its kind that aims to raise awareness of the “WHO-Code”–the World Health Organization’s International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and direct parents to hospitals, doctors, employers and resources that are WHO-Code compliant.   “Most parents don’t know that the WHO-Code was created to protect parent’s right to make an informed feeding decision at one of the most vulnerable and precious times of their lives–the birth of a child,   explains Marsha Walker, RN, IBCLC and a leading expert on WHO-Code compliance…

…Best for Babes aims to raise funds to continue the series on billboards and bus stations.    The USA Today Pregnancy & Wellness Report, produced by Media Planet….will (also) be distributed to ob/gyn offices and physicians through the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, will be carried in all Destination Maternity stores, distributed at March of Dimes events, will be circulated to 25,000 members of the United States Breastfeeding Committee and all member organizations, and all physician members of the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine.

The ad will also be in a special Pregnancy & Wellness report that will be distributed to ob/gyn offices and physicians through the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology; carried in all Destination Maternity stores; distributed at March of Dimes events; circulated to 25,000 members of the United States Breastfeeding Committee and all member organizations, and all physician members of the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine.

So kudos, ladies.  Hats off (or should I say bras off) to you.