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Breastfeeding: It’s Not What You See on Pinterest! Get the Facts From the Experts at NOCHS’ Family Birthing Unit

Any time you hear or read the words, “You should…” in connection with breastfeeding, we suggest you stop reading.

Why?

“The Pinterest mom is not real,” says nurse and Lactation Consultant Becky Shanahan of North Ottawa’s Family Birthing Unit. “You don’t need to watch a clock and follow some complicated set of rules. Breastfeeding is a natural process. Unfortunately, the online rules and myths sometimes scare new moms. We have found that most of the time, mom knows exactly what is right for her baby. She just needs encouragement and support.”

Becky, working with fellow nurse and Lactation Counselor Beth Curley, spends a lot of time with new moms. They offer personal consultations, either before or after birth, as well as support groups and classes. “If a mom is scared, or uncertain, or experiencing difficulties, we want her to call us,” Becky says. “It doesn’t matter if she gave birth here at NOCHS or somewhere else. We’re here for anyone who needs us.”

Becky and Beth agree that a lot of myths scare new moms away from breastfeeding. “Breastfeeding is a healthy, natural and rewarding way to nourish and bond with your baby,” Becky notes. “It should be a blissful and happy experience for both mom and baby. Please give us a call if you are nervous, uncertain, or having difficulties. We are here to help!”

Get help 24/7 by calling the Family Birthing Unit at (616) 847-5337. Or, feel free to send an email to breastfeeding@noch.org to start a dialogue with Becky or Beth.

MYTHS that discourage breastfeeding:
• “I’ll get more sleep if I bottle feed.” False. It’s been studied…mom gets more sleep with breastfeeding.
• “I can’t go back to work if I’m going to breastfeed.” Definitely not true. There are ways to make this work, pumping being one of the most successful.
• “My mom/aunt/sister couldn’t breastfeed, so I won’t be able to do it either.” This is a flat-out myth. Breastfeeding success is not a hereditary trait.

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