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Lactation Services

Dignity Health believes in the long-term benefits of breastfeeding. Breast milk provides an excellent source of nutrition for your baby and has many health benefits for both mother and baby. Antibodies from the mother are passed through the milk, therefore breastfed babies have a higher resistance to infection, and it may decrease the chance of your baby developing allergies, diabetes, Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis later on in life.

At each of our Greater Sacramento area hospitals, breastfeeding help and support is available to all mothers following delivery.

Promoting Breastfeeding for New Moms in Greater Sacramento

Successful breastfeeding at Dignity Health's Sacramento hospitals starts with a knowledgeable staff. Our lactation consultants provide new moms and babies much needed support seven days a week.

  • Skin-to-skin contact between new moms and babies at delivery
  • Single room couplet care with all supplies to support mom and baby in the same room
  • Staff nurses specially trained in teaching and supporting early breastfeeding

The Importance of Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding has long been recognized as one of the most important contributors to healthy babies. New and continuing research points to the positive health benefits gained by infant and mother as a result of breastfeeding.

There are also a significant number of health risks being discovered when women do not breastfeed. So significant are these risks that the importance of breastfeeding is becoming a priority on the national health agenda.

Many health and professional organizations (see list below) have all taken a strong position in favor of breastfeeding and are initiating new programs to encourage breastfeeding. They are all asking healthcare providers to play a role to help increase the breastfeeding rate.

Breastfeeding Health Benefits for Babies

  • Helps infants grow and mature
  • Protects infants from a wide variety of illnesses
  • Lowers chance of ear infections in first year of life by 50%
  • Reduces incidence and lessens severity of bacterial infections, like meningitis and lower respiratory infections
  • Fatty acids, unique to human milk, promote infant brain and visual development

Health Benefits of Breastfeeding for Moms

  • Reduces the risk of certain breast, ovarian and uterine cancers
  • Reduces the risk of osteoporosis
  • Lowers risk of postpartum depression

Evidence-Based Research and Lack of Breastfeeding

  • Contributes to the rising incidence of chronic disease in childhood and adolescence, such as diabetes, obesity and asthma
  • Is a risk factor for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)

Due to these significant health benefits, ensuring breastfeeding success for each new mom and baby at our hospitals is a priority for every member of our team.