You can expect the following standard of care from a Baby Friendly hospital:
- During pregnancy you will have a full discussion about caring for and feeding your baby, including the benefits of breastfeeding. This will provide you with all the facts you need to make an informed choice.
- You will be given your baby to hold against your skin straight after they are born.
- A midwife will offer to help you to start breastfeeding in the first half hour or so after your baby is born.
- Your baby will be kept with you at all times.
If you decide to breastfeed:
Baby Friendly health centres and surgeries provide a similar standard of care:
All staff in Baby Friendly facilities are trained to give accurate and consistent information and to support you while breastfeeding.
Find out about overcoming breastfeeding problems
You may find whilst trying to establish breastfeeding that you run into problems. Whilst these can be debilitating and painful, thankfully the most common ones can be solved relatively quickly and easily – given the right support.
Unfortunately, too often support is not available or, what is worse, mothers are told that problems such as engorgement and sore nipples are a normal part of breastfeeding. This is not true.
Here, you can read about how different problems develop, how to spot them at a early stage and how to solve them, either by yourself, or with the support of a health professional.
Breastfeeding is the healthiest way to feed your baby. If you decide not to breastfeed or to stop breastfeeding, it is possible to restart. Giving infant formula to a breastfed baby will reduce your milk supply. You do not need to eat any special foods while breastfeeding, but it is a good idea for you, just like everyone else, to eat a healthy diet.