How does working part-time versus working full-time affect breastfeeding goals?

July 17, 2014
Image: Wikipedia.

Breastfeeding is known to provide significant health benefits for both infants and their mothers. However, while many women intend to breastfeed despite returning to work, a new study finds that mothers who plan to breastfeed for at least three months but return to work full-time are less likely to meet their breastfeeding goals. Conversely, there is no association between women who return to work part-time and failure to reach the breastfeeding goal of at least three months. This new study was published today in the Journal of Human Lactation.

Studying from 1,172 U.S. mothers, study authors Kelsey Mirkovic, Cria Perrine, Kelley Scanlon, and Laurence Grummer-Strawn found that 28.8% of all who intended to breastfeed for three months were unable to meet their goal. The researchers also found the following:

  • Mothers who returned to full-time work before six weeks had 2.25 times the odds of not meeting their breastfeeding goals compared to those who stayed at home for at least three months.
  • Mothers who returned to work full-time between six weeks and three months had 1.82 times the odds of not reaching their goals.
  • No association was observed between returning to work part-time and not meeting intentions to breastfeed for at least three months.

"Support for a mother's delayed return to paid employment, or return at part-time hours, may help more mothers achieve their breastfeeding intentions," the researchers wrote. "This may increase breastfeeding rates and have important public health implications for US mothers and ."

Explore further: Breastfeeding decisions

More information: "Maternity Leave Duration and Full-time/Part-time Work Status Are Associated with US Mothers' Ability to Meet Breastfeeding Intentions," Journal of Human Lactation, 2014.

Related Stories

Breastfeeding decisions

July 8, 2014
(Medical Xpress)—Mothers concerned about their changing shape and appearance during pregnancy are less likely to breastfeed after their baby is born, new research has uncovered.

Gap between maternity policies revealed

August 19, 2013
Mothers who exclusively breastfeed their child spend 6.6 hours a week longer milk feeding than mothers who partially breastfeed or formula feed, which has important implications for health policies and programs, including ...

Personality may affect a new mother's decision to breastfeed

August 6, 2013
A new analysis has found that mothers who are more extroverted and less anxious are more likely to breastfeed and to continue to breastfeed than mothers who are introverted or anxious. Published early online in the Journal ...

In-hospital formula use deters breastfeeding

February 14, 2014
(Medical Xpress)—When mothers feed their newborns formula in the hospital, they are less likely to fully breastfeed their babies in the second month of life and more likely to quit breastfeeding early, even if they had ...

Persuading moms to breastfeed: Study examines effects of government nutrition program on choice to use infant formula

February 21, 2013
One of the federal government's goals in tweaking the content of its food packages for the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) nutrition program was to encourage more new mothers to breastfeed. The changes, which took effect ...

Breastfeeding benefits mothers with reduced blood pressure risk

November 2, 2011
(Medical Xpress) -- While the benefits of breastfeeding for the baby are well established and some studies have shown that mothers who breastfeed have lower risks of diabetes, high cholesterol and heart disease, a new study ...

Recommended for you

No evidence that widely marketed technique to treat leaky bladder/prolapse works

October 16, 2017
There is no scientific evidence that a workout widely marketed to manage the symptoms of a leaky bladder and/or womb prolapse actually works, conclude experts in an editorial published online in the British Journal of Sports ...

Ten pence restaurant chain levy on sugary drinks linked to fall in sales

October 16, 2017
The introduction of a 10 pence levy on sugar sweetened drinks across the 'Jamie's Italian' chain of restaurants in the UK was associated with a relatively large fall in sales of these beverages of between 9 and 11 per cent, ...

New exercises help athletes manage dangerous breathing disorder

October 16, 2017
A novel set of breathing techniques developed at National Jewish Health help athletes overcome vocal cord dysfunction and improve performance during high-intensity exercise. Vocal cord dysfunction, now also referred to as ...

Learning and staying in shape key to longer lifespan, study finds

October 13, 2017
People who are overweight cut their life expectancy by two months for every extra kilogramme of weight they carry, research suggests.

Blueberries may improve attention in children following double-blind trial

October 13, 2017
Primary school children could show better attention by consuming flavonoid-rich blueberries, following a study conducted by the University of Reading.

Menopause linked to changes in brain energy use

October 13, 2017
Researchers from Weill Cornell Medicine and the University of Arizona Health Sciences have found that women's brains use less energy during the menopause. The reduction in energy use by the brain was found to be similar to ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.