Breast milk is the best food for babies. It gives them exactly what they need to grow healthy and strong, and it helps protect them from many illnesses. Plus, breast-feeding has important benefits for the mother, including helping her recover from pregnancy and possibly lowering her risk for diabetes, breast cancer and ovarian cancer. Because breast-feeding has so many health benefits for the baby and mother, we do much to support it.
We are proud to be designated a "Show Me 5" Hospital by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. This means we have adopted five evidence-based maternity care practices that support breast-feeding initiation and duration:
- Help mothers initiate breast-feeding within the first hour of birth
- Practice "rooming in," allowing infants to stay in the same room as their mothers
- Limit breast-feeding infants to breast milk (and no other liquids), unless medically indicated
- Do not give pacifiers or artificial nipples to breast-feeding infants
- Foster the establishment of breast-feeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge
Our licensed lactation consultant, Annie Havner, R.N., BSN, IBCLC, is available to help you with breast-feeding during your stay with us and after you go home. Plus, she leads Baby, Breast-feeding and Beyond. This class for expectant parents covers breast-feeding, as well as newborn characteristics, diapering, bathing, car seat safety and much more.
Our lactation consultant also leads Take Five: Amazing MOMS (Mother's Own Milk Support), a support group for breast-feeding mothers and women who are pregnant and want to learn more about breast-feeding.
For more information on any of our breast-feeding support offerings, call 573.302.2999.