This week (1 to 7 August) is World Breastfeeding Week, which aims to raise awareness of the benefits of breastfeeding for mum and baby.
Breastfeeding has many benefits for both you and your little one. It’s tailor-made for baby and ready on demand, as well as having vitamins and minerals and offering protection from infections. For mums, breastfeeding is beneficial because it lowers the risk of breast and ovarian cancer, osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease.
Royal Surrey’s midwives and infant feeding support workers are on hand throughout your pregnancy and after the birth of your baby to give advice, guidance and practical support to help breastfeeding get off to a good start. Staff recognise that deciding how to feed your baby is a very individual choice and will offer advice and help whatever your decision.
Kate Rosati, Infant Feeding Lead and Specialist Midwife, said: “We offer help with anything feeding related. We support mums in hospital and in the community who are learning the skills to feed their babies.
“Our role is to provide evidence-based information to allow families to make the right choice for them around feeding their baby. We offer personalised care, supporting families to achieve their feeding goals. Information is provided on how to position and attach the baby, how to recognise a good feed and what to do if baby isn’t feeding as well as expected.
“When the mums leave hospital, midwives and Infant feeding support workers will watch a feed and offer support and guidance as required. The team will refer into the specialist clinics as appropriate.”
Before the birth of your baby, your midwife will chat to you about what to expect and explain about the many health benefits breastfeeding brings. A free virtual feeding workshop is available to join.
After the birth, your midwife will support you to have skin-to-skin contact, which not only supports close and loving relations but also allows the natural breastfeeding behaviours to develop. The team will help you offer a feed to your baby every two to three hours.
Once you leave hospital, our feeding support team, based in local maternity hubs, are available for feeding support.
If you’re worried feeding isn’t going to plan, a 24-hour advice line is available – Call a Midwife line on 0300 123 5473.
From Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, you can speak to the infant feeding team on 01483 571122 extension 4702.
Royal Surrey offers two breastfeeding drop-ins a week, one based in Guildford the other near Bordon, please see our website Feeding your baby | Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust for more information.
(Pictured above Emily Taylor from our Infant Feeding Team.)