The Case for Breastfeeding Education: Prenatal Breastfeeding Education is Important. Here’s Why.
Breastfeeding is natural, but it is a learned skill that requires education, practice, and support.
Research shows that women's predelivery intentions are strong predictors of both initiating and continuing breastfeeding (1). Studies also suggest that Black mothers are usually knowledgeable about the benefits of breastfeeding but need more practical information on how to breastfeed and how to overcome challenges.
Table 1. Common barriers to breastfeeding for mothers, which may be particularly relevant for racial and ethnic minority women (2)
How Breastfeeding Education Classes Can Help You Achieve Your
Culturally relevant breastfeeding education provides information that shapes breastfeeding intentions, provides skills for breastfeeding, and tools to overcome common breastfeeding challenges. Education can also address culturally specific and historical barriers to breastfeeding experienced by Black women. Furthermore, individuals who receive breastfeeding education during pregnancy are more likely to initiate breastfeeding and to have a longer breastfeeding duration. Whatever your breastfeeding goals include, attending a class can set you on the path for success.
Are you interested in prenatal breastfeeding education, but not sure how to get started?
Create a free account on bEarth Work™ to find and book virtual breastfeeding classes created and taught by Black lactation professionals and other birthworkers. You can use the chat feature to send a message to any of the course instructors as well.
Review the resource at the link below for additional tips and resources on preparing for breastfeeding: https://www.blackgirlsbreastfeedingclub.com/preparing-for-breastfeeding.
1. Ahluwalia IB, Morrow B, Hsia J Pediatrics. (2005) Why do women stop breastfeeding? Findings from the Pregnancy Risk Assessment and Monitoring System. Pediatrics, 116(6):1408-12.
2. Jones, K. M., Power, M. L., Queenan, J. T., & Schulkin, J. (2015). Racial and ethnic disparities in breastfeeding. Breastfeeding Medicine, 10(4), 186–196. https://doi.org/10.1089/bfm.2014.0152.