8 Habits of Breastfeeding Moms

November 2015

Human milk for infants, whether term or preterm, is an ideal source of nutrition for neonatal growth and development. At Medela, we are dedicated to helping mothers have a successful breastfeeding journey to provide this nutrition to their babies. Part of this is understanding their concerns, their difficulties and most common questions when it comes to breastfeeding or pumping. To help us consistently understand current mothers’ perceptions and views, we conduct an annual survey across the United States with a variety of questions and the opportunity to share open-ended commentary.

We survey over 1,000 moms about their breastfeeding habits, practices, beliefs and goals. It’s a great way for us to learn how to better serve breastfeeding mothers and also clinicians. This in turn allows us the opportunity to share knowledge, support and inspiration.

How can these 8 facts help you in your clinical practice? These statistics may offer an additional  understanding of today’s breastfeeding moms and their top of mind concerns. Read them here:

  1. Most moms feed their babies primarily by breast

When it comes to feeding their babies, 46% of moms we surveyed said breastfeeding is their primary method. 23% practice equal amounts of breastfeeding and pumping. It’s important for moms to choose the method that works best for them and their babies, as no two breastfeeding journeys are the same. Check out the chart below for more details:

How moms breastfeed

  1. Post Partum Nurses play an important part

For most families, the breastfeeding adventure begins within the first 2 hours of baby’s life. Moms are most often helped by Post Partum Nurses during their hospital stays. These nurses play a huge role in offering emotional and medical support while moms learn the best breastfeeding techniques.

breastfeed within 2 hrs

  1. Most moms start pumping in the first week of baby’s life

There are many things to think about when bringing a new baby home from the hospital, and for many moms, pumping is at the top of the list. Pumping can help moms make the most out of their milk supply, and also create a more flexible feeding schedule. Bottle feeding can also allow other family members to bond with a new baby during frequent feedings.

Moms start pumping

  1. Nearly 3 of 5 pumping moms pump at least once a day

Moms produce different amounts of milk for a variety of reasons. Some moms even produce more milk than their baby can consume, so it becomes extremely important to store that liquid gold for later use. Here are some guidelines for safe breast milk collection and storage we’ve assembled for breastfeeding mothers.

How often moms pump

  1. 3 out of 10 moms use or plan to use more than one pump

From changing needs to easier travel (don’t we have enough to enough to carry as it is?), some moms find going back to work is much easier if they have more than one pump. Check out these other tips for going back to work for breastfeeding mothers.

Why moms use multiple pumps

  1. Moms seek advice from many sources

Most moms turn to family and friends as their #1 source of information on breastfeeding and pumping. Other sources include online forums, pediatricians and OB/GYN doctors.

Breastfeeding resources

  1. 58% of moms used an app to track their pregnancy

More and more moms are using mobile apps to track both pregnancy and breastfeeding. Have you checked out Medela’s new app, MyMedela? With activity trackers, breastfeeding tips and product advice, it will quickly become a mom’s perfect pumping companion. Moms can download it for free in the app store here!

Breastfeeding app chart

  1. 66% of moms are aware of insurance benefits

While the majority of moms interviewed were aware that their pumps are covered by insurance, only 27% knew of benefits that cover nursing and pumping supplies, and 37% knew that their benefits included lactation services. Learn more about breastfeeding insurance coverage.

Lactations services awareness