Parents without health insurance less likely to take breastfeeding classes

Mothers’ breast milk carries many health benefits – both for babies and for moms who breastfeed. Breastfeeding reduces the risks of infection, obesity, and diabetes in babies and also reduces the risks of postpartum depression and some cancers for nursing mothers.

But breastfeeding can be challenging, so doctors and other breastfeeding advocates offer resources to help moms and babies breastfeed successfully. One common resource is a breastfeeding class that covers some common breastfeeding challenges as well as ways to remedy them.

To get a better idea of who attends breastfeeding classes, we asked parents of young children (0-3 years old) about their experiences. One quarter of all parents with a child age 0-3 attended a breastfeeding class and 40% of first-time parents attended a class. But only 12% of parents without health insurance went to a breastfeeding class. Read the full report: “Breast is best” but uninsured parents take breastfeeding classes less often.

Infographic: Participation in Breastfeeding Classes by Parents' Insurance Status

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In this short video, Drs. Michelle Moniz and Lauren O’Connell talk about the benefits of breastfeeding and the importance of making sure breastfeeding resources reach all families.

Did you take a breastfeeding class before your baby was born? Do you think classes should be made available to all parents? Share your experiences in the comments or on twitter with #NPCHbreastfeeding.