LAURINBURG — The Scotland County Health Department is taking advantage of World Breastfeeding Week, which began Friday and ends Thursday, by encouraging Scotland County mothers to breastfeed their children.
“I truly believe with unified positive support from all areas of the community, the initiation, success, and duration of breastfeeding will continue to increase and we will eventually begin to notice a significant improvement in the health and quality of life among Scotland County residents,” stated Morgan Richardson, director of Scotland County’s WIC Program and breastfeeding coordinator.
The department employees breastfeeding peer counselor Priscilla Bryant, who helps to support and encourage mothers during the last months of pregnancy and first months of the child’s arrival.
According to Richardson, research continues to support the claim that babies who receive only breastmilk for the first six months of life are less likely to develop a wide range of chronic and acute diseases, such as ear infections, diarrheal diseases, asthma, obesity, and respiratory illnesses. Mothers also benefit from breastfeeding with a decreased risk for certain cancers (breast and ovarian) and osteoporosis, Richardson said.
“The Scotland County Health Department and Scotland County WIC Program are dedicated members of the breastfeeding team who pledge to support all breastfeeding mothers and urge every other organization or individual, especially those in our community, to do the same,” Richardson said,.
Richardson encouraged breastfeeding mothers to find a support team which can include family, friends, physicians, nurses, employers, and childcare providers. The team works together to provide information, protect mothers against critics and discrimination, reassure mothers and lend a hand to help breastfeeding mothers succeed. Team members with special skills and knowledge about breastfeeding, such as peer counselors or International Board Certified Lactation Consultants, or especially helpful.
For information about World Breastfeeding Week 2014 or breastfeeding in general, call the Call Scotland County WIC Program at 910-277-2440, visit www.scotlandcounty.org/health.aspx or like the department on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ScotlandCountyDPH.