Breastfeeding is not just a mother’s job

[Science Line, 12/10/18] Advocates say moms don’t get enough support from hospitals as they attempt the tricky and painful task of breastfeeding their newborns.

When Heather Hopson gave birth, she knew that she wanted to breastfeed her baby daughter.

During her pregnancy, she learned that breast milk helps prevent the baby from developing allergies, asthma and urinary infections — all while providing perfect nutrition. So she was surprised to hear that doctors and nurses at the Pittsburg hospital where she gave birth were not particularly supportive of her decision.

They suggested formula instead, she said. Hopson was in disbelief.

“The pediatrician who checked over my daughter told me that nursing’s not for everyone and that I should feed my daughter formula. I ignored her advice,” Hopson said. “I was determined to at least try.”

She demanded a pump be brought into her room at UPMC so she could express milk.

Hopson’s experience is far from unique. Though the World Health Organization recommends mothers breastfeed for the first six months, only 49 percent of women in the United States do so, according to 2011 figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention…………

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