BRISBANE, Australia, Sept. 17 (UPI) — An Australian researcher says mothers need real help breastfeeding, not to be made to feel guilty for not breastfeeding.
Joy Parkinson of the Queensland University of Technology in Australia says a more supportive approach might be helpful in promoting the practice.
Parkinson and colleagues looked at almost 1,400 women in Australia and the United States and found support and encouragement from family and friends to persevere with breastfeeding was the key to boosting breastfeeding rates — especially when the going got tough.
“Breastfeeding rates in developed countries such as Britain, Australia and United States are typically lower than World Health Organization goals,” the researchers say in a statement.
Parkinson says women know breastfeeding is good for their baby but they say they needed the tools to help them to breastfeed longer.
“Governments and breastfeeding advocates across the globe have tended to focus on a campaign of fear and guilt to push women to breastfeed and in Britain it’s no different,” Parkinson says. “What we have found in the U.S. and Australia is that preaching the benefits of breastfeeding, is like preaching to the converted and does not increase breastfeeding duration rates.”
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