- Breastfeeding provides substantial health benefits for both children and mothers.
- The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends providing interventions during pregnancy and after birth to support breastfeeding.
- Interventions through professional support, peer support and formal education, helps to improve the rate of breastfeeding.
This was recommended by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) and published in the October 2016 issue of JAMA.
‘Interventions to Support Breastfeeding through practical advice, through professional support, peer support and formal education helps to improve the rate of breastfeeding.’
AdvertisementThere is convincing evidence that breastfeeding provides substantial health benefits for children and adequate evidence that breastfeeding provides moderate health benefits for women.
But, nearly half of all mothers in the United States who initially breastfeed stop doing so by 6 months, and there are significant disparities in breastfeeding rates among younger mothers and in the disadvantaged communities.
The USPSTF is an independent, volunteer panel of experts that makes recommendations about the effectiveness of specific preventive care services such as screenings, counseling services, and preventive medications.
To update its 2008 recommendation, the USPSTF reviewed the evidence on the effectiveness of interventions to support breastfeeding on breastfeeding initiation, duration, and exclusivity.
Primary care clinicians can support women before and after childbirth by providing interventions directly or by referral to help them make an informed choice about how to feed their infants and to be successful in their choice.
Interventions include Promoting the benefits of breastfeeding Providing practical advice Direct support on how to breastfeed Providing psychological support Interventions can be categorized as professional support, peer support, and formal education. Interventions may also involve a woman's partner, other family members, and friends.
There is adequate evidence to suggest that interventions to support breastfeeding increase the duration and rates of breastfeeding, including exclusive breastfeeding.
Clinicians should respect the autonomy of women and their families to make decisions that fit their specific situation, values, and preferences, knowing that not all women choose to or are able to breastfeed.
The USPSTF concludes with moderate certainty that interventions to support breastfeeding have a moderate net benefit for women and their children.
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