06 Nov 2013 11:05:18 MST Written by: Leann Tobin
MMH Supports Breastfeeding Moms
It is well documented in the literature that breastfeeding is best for babies. In addition to containing all the vitamins and nutrients babies need in the first six months of life, breast milk is full of disease-fighting substances that protect your baby from illness. These are the reasons that the American Academy of Pediatrics and Montrose Memorial Hospital recommend breastfeeding to all of our new moms. In addition to good nutrition, breastfeeding has medical and psychological benefits for both mom and baby. The physical contact helps create a special bond between moms and babies, and human milk is easier for babies to digest. Research also suggests that breastfeeding may help to protect children from obesity, diabetes, asthma, eczema, colitis and some cancers.
Although breastfeeding is natural, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s easy. The nurses at MMH are trained to help our new moms breastfeed. We even have one nurse who is a specifically trained lactation professional and will work through any difficulties that arise. She is available for all new moms and they can even set up freeconsultations with her after they are discharged. Breastfeeding is encouraged during the MMH “Teddy Bear University” childbirth classes, and parents are educated on the best practices as well as things to avoid. Ninety-three percent of our moms leave the hospital breastfeeding, which is well above the national average!
Last week, Montrose Memorial Hospital was honored by The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) for implementing the Colorado Can Do 5! Program. This program requires that hospitals ensure that babies are breastfed in the first hour after birth; fed only breast milk in the hospital; stay in the same room with the mother; do not use a pacifier in the hospital; and that mothers are given a breastfeeding-help telephone number before discharge. The Family Center at MMH consistently meets all of these criteria. Forty-one out of Colorado’s 53 hospitals with maternity services participate in the healthy breastfeeding practices program.
Colorado is currently ranked first in the nation for exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of a child’s life and MMH is proud to do all we can to help new moms and babies get a healthy start!