Breastfeeding is good for mother, child and the family budget

Breastfeeding is good for mother, child and the family budget

The mission of the Mahon- ing-Youngstown Community Action Partnership (MYCAP) is to plan and implement quality services designed to educate and empower eligible residents of Mahoning County with a goal of moving toward self-sufficiency. Breastfeeding is part of this work.

Breastfeeding takes the infant out of poverty in the important first months after birth and gives the child an equal nutritional and caring start in life to help compensate for other inequalities in the world that they will face.

Recent studies indicate that the nation could save almost $13 billion in health care costs and avoid 900 infant deaths if more women breastfed. In addition, studies that have been done suggest that the practice of breastfeeding promotes mother/child bonding and is correlated with reduced instances of neglect and abuse.

Although studies indicate at least 80 percent of women intend to at least try breastfeeding, the breastfeeding initiation rate in Mahoning County is 34 percent — we can do better.

MYCAP WIC’s support services include Breastfeeding peer helpers who provide mother-to-mother education and support to mothers in Mahoning County reach their breastfeeding goals. They meet with WIC clients before baby is born to help mothers prepare for breastfeeding and follow up after baby arrives to answer questions and offer guidance. For questions and situations beyond the basics WIC provides an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant.

August is National Breastfeeding Month. This provides an opportunity for us to focus on the multiple advantages to a family that chooses breastfeeding for their infants and young children. Additional information on supporting breast feeding is available from Heidi DiBacco at 330-747-7921 x1751.

Fawn Allison, WIC director

Marilyn J. McDaniel, MYCAP CEO


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