Lockdown means more time to breastfeed

Mums across Merseyside have been discovering some unexpected benefits of lockdown.

It has meant that many women have found protected time to breastfeed due to fewer visitors, and more time at home..

It comes as Merseyside marks National Breastfeeding Week from Monday 1 June with a series of events organised by breastfeeding support workers across the area.

It will kick off with an online ‘latch-on’ at 11am on Monday 1st June over Zoom organised by Liverpool Bambis, the peer support group for mums.

To sign up, visit the Liverpool Bambis Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/Bambis1/.

Although the local breastfeeding rate has been increasing steadily in recent years, Liverpool still lags behind the national average.

A total of 59 per cent of new mums start breastfeeding in Liverpool, compared to 67 per cent across the country.

This falls to 37 per cent by six weeks, compared to a national rate of 46 per cent.

More information about the support Liverpool Bambis offer is available online:

Twitter: www.twitter.com/BambisLiverpool

Instagram: @bambisliverpool

Website: www.liverpoolbambis.co.uk

Liverpool mum Sarah King said: “I’ve had time to relax with my baby after working in a very stressful industry it’s been amazing to spend time bonding and learning how to be a mum. I’m a single mum and thought this was going to be the worst time ever.

“Breastfeeding terrified me and I set out to only do six weeks initially but this time has made me love it and feel super confident about doing it.”

Mum Sarah Macindoe, from Wirral, said: “This lockdown has meant we got time together to be a family. We normally only really have the weekends together as my husband works long days.

“We’ve enjoyed mornings in bed together playing and laughing. My husband and daughter have had so much bonding time together it’s been so lovely to see them as a two and also enjoy it as a three, or five if you count our two dogs!”

Liverpool’s Director of Public Health, Matt Ashton, said: “Breastfeeding for even a short period gives children the best start in life and National Breastfeeding Week is a chance for us to celebrate how far we’ve come with all our parents, health visitors and Bambis peer supporters.

“This year we all find ourselves in extraordinary circumstances, but to hear that many women are finding more time to breastfeed brings a glimmer of hope to what has been a difficult few months.”