Eleven years ago, on Aug. 6, 2011, the U.S. Breastfeeding Committee (USBC) officially declared that August is National Breastfeeding Month. Each year, the USBC spearheads a conversation on the health benefits of breastfeeding and the policy challenges that hinder it.
Exclusive breastfeeding until infants are 6 months old is recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the American Academy of Pediatrics. However, nearly 2 out of 3 infants are not breastfed exclusively during this recommended time period.
Parents may be prevented from breastfeeding for the recommended length of time due to a variety of factors, from lack of information on effective feeding techniques to trouble with milk supply or infant latching. Some breastfeeding parents face barriers to breastfeeding when they return to work.
This month, we'll publish an article each week covering a crucial aspect of breastfeeding. We'll discuss the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, factors that can affect your milk supply, how to find support if you or your infant are struggling, and how employers can better support breastfeeding parents.
Finally, in an exclusive interview, we'll talk with the U.S. Breastfeeding Committee about its advocacy to change the landscape of breastfeeding support across the United States.