Understanding Breastfeeding and How to Succeed

Understanding Breastfeeding and How to Succeed

Understanding Breastfeeding is a highly readable and encouraging introduction to the topic. It is filled with practical advice. You will find solutions to problems large and small, as well as topics ranging from sore nipples to the feeding of a premature baby.

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Understanding Breastfeeding is a highly readable and encouraging introduction to the topic. It is filled with practical advice. You will find solutions to problems large and small, as well as topics ranging from sore nipples to the feeding of a premature baby. The book also provides a fascinating insight into the checkered history of breastfeeding from ancient times to the present. Why was it that in the past healthy well-to-do women so often entrusted their precious infants to the care of professional wet nurses? What led generations of physicians to draw up rules that made it impossible for many mothers to breastfeed? And how and why did science and common sense triumph in the end?

Understanding Breastfeeding was written by two well-known Scandinavian authors and breastfeeding activists, Dr. Elisabet Helsing and Anna-Pia Häggkvist, IBCLC and nurse. Dr. Helsing is believed to be the person most responsible for making Norway the most baby- and mother-friendly country on earth. Originally written in Norwegian, this book has been updated and translated into English.

Divided into three parts, the book covers:
-Preparing for breastfeeding
-Breastfeeding in practice
-Glimpses into the history of breastfeeding

  • Based on scientific knowledge and years of practical experience in helping mothers breastfeed successfully, this book will give you new ideas and ways to manage and promote breastfeeding.


Authors: Elisabet Helsing and Anna-Pia Häggkvist

ISBN: 978-0-984776-0-9

Copyright: 2012

Total Pages: 448

Softcover

Comments

Grade 
Alicia I
11/19/2012

© International Lactation Consultant Association
ILCA Print and Multimedia Reviews
April 2012 – Available at www.ILCA.org
Understanding Breastfeeding and How to Succeed
Elisabet Helsing and Anna-Pia Häggkvist
Hale Publishing, LP, 2012
442 pages, illustrations, appendices, index, US$34.95, softcover
Orders: Hale Publishing, LP, 1712 N. Forest Street, Amarillo, TX 79106 USA
Tel: 800-378-1317; fax: 806-376-9901; URL: www.ibreastfeeding.com

“Breastfeeding is a major element in a baby’s first encounter with its mother and in a mother’s first encounter with her baby” (p. 7). This opening line establishes the book’s premise that breastfeeding is a normal part of being human and provides mothers with easy strategies to solve early problems.The first section looks at breastfeeding from a physiological perspective, helping readers understand the health benefits of human milk. The practice and management of breastfeeding follow with straightforward, yet craftily worded, methods to solve common problems (e.g., description of reverse pressure softening for the eversion of flat nipples and hand expression of milk). “Golden rules” are highlighted in boxes to emphasize important points. Drawings scattered throughout this section help visualize the concepts; the illustrations of attachment are particularly good. The authors have also included several moving stories told from a mother’s point of view. “The Battle for Sunnyboy” (p. 190) beautifully describes how a mother conquered sexual abuse to successfully breastfeed.

The third section examines the history of breastfeeding (with a European twist) and describes
factors that led to Norway’s (in particular) impressively high breastfeeding rate. Although interesting from a historical perspective, this section probably would not be read by a tired mother looking for general breastfeeding advice. In addition, because the authors come from a country where mothers receive 33 weeks of paid maternity leave, the book contains little information about working and breastfeeding. Some information may be shocking to most readers. For example, “the more often mothers had been in contact with the health system the less likely they were to breastfeed” (p. 355), relates to a thorough study of 9 countries that the WHO decided not to publish because of unwelcome results. Furthermore, hurting and sleep-deprived mothers may wonder what prevents their own country from emulating the favorable Scandinavian mothering and breastfeeding conditions described within.

This book will appeal to an educated reader who is looking for a resource with current breastfeeding information as well as to lactation consultants with an interest in historical perspectives. In some places, the translation from Norwegian into English reads awkwardly. However, the bold titles and subtitles make it easy to navigate through the book. Additionally, the authors’ very positive tone gives the sense that successful breastfeeding can be accomplished by using practical advice.

Vicki Gettel, RN, IBCLC
Plano, Texas USA

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    Understanding Breastfeeding and How to Succeed

    Understanding Breastfeeding and How to Succeed

    Understanding Breastfeeding is a highly readable and encouraging introduction to the topic. It is filled with practical advice. You will find solutions to problems large and small, as well as topics ranging from sore nipples to the feeding of a premature baby.

    Write your review