Every year from August 1 to August 7, people around the world celebrate World Breastfeeding Week to raise awareness about the benefits of breastfeeding. Whether you’re a nursing mom or you just want to show your support for breastfeeding, here are our seven favorite ways to enjoy the week.
7. Thank a Nursing Mom
Since moms don’t breastfeed to get attention or accolades, it’s easy to forget to thank them for everything they do.
If you know a mom who’s nursing, write her a message, comment on a photo or post where she talks about breastfeeding, or send her a card. If you were a breastfed baby, thank your own mom!
If you’re a mom who pumps or nurses, don’t forget to take a moment to tell yourself how amazing you are. You give your time and your body to nourish your baby; that’s pretty awesome.
6. Find the Right Bra Fit
Since nearly 80% of women wear a bra that doesn’t quite fit, and bra size can change over time, this is a great time to measure (or remeasure) yourself. All you need to find the right size is a cloth tape measure or a piece of string and a ruler.
Once you’ve found your bra size, remind your friends to do it too! The right bra can make a world of difference just by helping your posture, which reduces back and neck pain.
5. Talk about Your Breastfeeding Experience
As natural as it is, nursing is still oddly mysterious, even in the age of social media. Breastfeeding rates in the US are rising, but the numbers show that only 50% of babies are still nursing at 6 months, and less than one-third make it to one year. While most hospitals and doctors are great at asking moms how they’re doing in the first few weeks, we don’t have the same support communities as women who live countries like Namibia. By sharing your journey, you can help remove the mystery and stigma for other moms.
4. Share Your “Brelfies”
While some might call this just another social media trend, the rise of the “Brelfie” (Breastfeeding Selfie) has been endorsed by none other than the World Health Organization, and UNICEF said Brelfies are “a good way to break down any stigma about breastfeeding in public and spread the word about the importance of mother’s milk.”
For moms who pump or hand express, you can participate by sharing images of yourself pumping or the amount of liquid gold you express.
Post your photos on Instagram or Facebook with the hashtag #BraveBrelfie to share your journey with us.
3. Participate in The Big Latch On
Held on the Friday and Saturday of World Breastfeeding Week, The Big Latch On counts the number of children who "latch" at one time. It starts at 10:30 AM in New Zealand and adds each time zone. The goal is to remove the stigma around breastfeeding in public, raise awareness for the benefits of nursing, and provide a place for moms to socialize.
Find out more about The Big Latch On.
2. Take a Breastfeeding Vacation
While a supportive community is essential for a successful breastfeeding experience, so is finding quiet time to relax. That rejuvenation does so much good for your outlook on everything.
Find a day or two and spend some time away from the rest of the world. Unplug from social media; turn off your phone and TV. Relish those moments of bliss while you nurse, and enjoy time with your little one and your family.
1. Feed Your Baby
You saw this one coming, right? Whether you’re a nursing mom, a pumping mom, or any of the other amazing caretakers in a child’s life, the absolute best way to celebrate this week is to nourish the baby in your care.