Fewer than half of all babies are being breast-fed at 6 months. Three-quarters of women who gave birth in 2007 began breast-feeding, meeting a goal set by the government’s Healthy People 2010 program, the C.D.C. reported. But the number of mothers who continued to breast-feed through a child’s first year has not increased, agency officials said.
Only 43 percent of mothers are still nursing at 6 months and only 22 percent breast-feed for a full year, falling short of the national goal of having half of new mothers breast-feed for six months and 25 percent for a full year.
Breast-feeding is encouraged because of its many benefits for both mother and infant. But women often do not get the support they need in the hospital and may have a hard time continuing to breast-feed once they return to work, C.D.C. officials said.
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