Breastfeeding is a natural way for new mothers to bond with their baby and provide the vital nutrition newborns need. But just like many aspects of having a baby, it’s not always easy the first time. Breastfeeding is an important skill to learn, and we’re here to help you.
Mommy & Me Breastfeeding Clinic
This clinic is available to all moms who are breastfeeding. During your visit, the baby will be weighed and examined by a physician, and a lactation counselor will work with the new mom to develop a plan to meet her breastfeeding needs.
Nursing Your Infant class
This class focuses on the advantages of breastfeeding, proper positioning and latch-on, guidelines for adequate breastfeeding, and how to prevent and resolve discomfort. Fathers or support persons are encouraged to attend. This class is taught by a certified lactation counselor.
Benefits of breastfeeding
The decision to breastfeed has a wide array of benefits for both mom and baby.
Breastfeeding provides warmth and closeness, and the physical contact helps create a special bond between you and your newborn. In addition, research shows that breastfeeding and breast milk can lead to better health for mothers and their children.
Benefits for Babies
- Breast milk is easier for your baby to digest.
- It doesn’t need to be prepared.
- It’s always available.
- It has all the nutrients, calories and fluids your baby needs to be healthy.
- It has growth factors that ensure the best development of your baby’s organs.
- It has many substances that formulas don’t have that protect your baby from diseases and infections. In fact, breastfed babies are less likely to have:
- Ear infections.
- Pneumonia, wheezing and bronchiolitis.
- Other bacterial and viral infections, such as meningitis.
- Research also suggests that breastfeeding may help to protect against obesity, diabetes, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), asthma, eczema, colitis and some cancers.
Benefits for Mothers
- Breastfeeding releases hormones in your body that promote mothering behavior.
- It returns your uterus to the size it was before pregnancy more quickly.
- It burns more calories, which may help you lose the weight you gained during pregnancy.
- It delays the return of your menstrual period to help keep iron in your body.
- It reduces your risk of ovarian cancer and breast cancer.
- It keeps your bones strong, which helps protect against bone fractures in older age.
We are a Baby-Friendly Hospital
Baby-Friendly USA is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring that all birthing facilities in the United States become designated Baby-Friendly.
UK HealthCare is the first and only hospital in Lexington that has achieved the standard of excellence of being Baby-Friendly designated.
What It Means
The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) is a global program that was launched by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in 1991 to encourage and recognize hospitals and birthing centers that offer an optimal level of care for infant feeding and mother/baby bonding.
Becoming a Baby-Friendly facility is a comprehensive, detailed and thorough journey toward excellence in providing evidence-based, maternity care with the goal of achieving optimal infant feeding outcomes and mother/baby bonding.
It recognizes and awards birthing facilities who successfully implement the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding.
The 10 Steps to Successful Breastfeeding
- Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff.
- Train all health care staff in the skills necessary to implement this policy.
- Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.
- Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within one hour of birth.
- Show mothers how to breastfeed and how to maintain lactation, even if they are separated from their infants.
- Give infants no food or drink other than breast-milk, unless medically indicated.
- Practice rooming in -- allow mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day.
- Encourage breastfeeding on demand.
- Give no pacifiers or artificial nipples to breastfeeding infants.
- Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital or birth center.
Why is this important?
- There is proof of lower risk for certain diseases.
- Breastfeeding offers an unmatched beginning for children.
- Infants and mothers who breastfeed are healthier.
- Families who breastfeed save money.
- Communities reap the benefits of breastfeeding.
- The environment benefits when babies are breastfed.
At UK HealthCare, we provide mothers and their babies the early support needed to achieve successful breastfeeding. Our staff is trained in giving all mothers the information, confidence and skills necessary to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies or feeding formula safely.
To learn more, visit Baby-Friendly USA.