The early weeks of pregnancy are fragile—and confusing. Here, the answers to your questions.
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August 1 officially kicked off National Breastfeeding Month and yesterday the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released their 2012 Breastfeeding Report Card—and there’s loads of good news to share:
According to the report, the number of women trying to breastfeed—76.9 percent in 2009, up from 74.6 percent in 2008—is the largest annual increase over the previous decade. (A special shout out to Idaho. The Gem State has the highest percentage of women who give nursing a go: 90.8 percent!) More good news: Those women who breastfeed for six months has jumped to 47.2 percent from 44.3 percent, and those who nurse for the first year has increased from 23.8 percent from 25.5 percent. In addition, the CDC’s Maternity Practices in Infant Nutrition and Care (mPINC) survey, which evaluates how well hospitals and birth centers support nursing moms on a scale of 0-100 (with 100 being the absolute best), showed that from 2009 to 2011 the average mPINC score went up a whopping 5 points to 70, and individual scores jumped 5 or more points in 26 states and DC.
Hip hip hooray!
To help keep those numbers going up (and up and up), fitpregnancy.com has lined up a full month of breastfeeding goodness. To start, check out our Ultimate Guide To Breastfeeding page. It’s jam packed with our best nursing articles and advice, from getting the right latch to weaning, and everything in between. We’re also hosting three live Facebook chats with our favorite breastfeeding experts. The first is this Friday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. EST. We’ll be discussing breastfeeding basics with Fit Pregnancy advisory board members Wendy Haldeman and Corky Harvey, certified lactation consultants and the owners of The Pump Station & Nurtury, a breastfeeding resource center with three locations in Southern California. To join the discussion, like us on Facebook, post your question or comment, and our experts will answer them live. (It’s like having your own personal lactation consultant—for free!)
So join the breastfeeding conversation—and show your support for nursing mamas nationwide.