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New! A special room for breastfeeding

St. Mary’s opens a private room for any mom who needs to breastfeed or pump — including colleagues and visitors

St. Mary’s Family Birth Center now offers a private room available for visitors, patients and colleagues who need to breastfeed their baby or pump while at the Baxter Street campus.

St. Mary's Breastfeeding RoomThe room is part of a system-wide Breastfeeding Friendly Initiative to encourage breastfeeding as an investment in good health for both the baby and the mother. In addition, St. Mary’s is encouraging other businesses to establish breastfeeding rooms of their own to help make breastfeeding more comfortable and more widely practiced.

“Numerous studies in the United States and around the world show breastfeeding is the best way to nourish a baby,” said Laura Crowe, one of St. Mary’s international board certified lactation consultants. “Human breastmilk is ideally suited to meet a growing baby’s nutritional needs.”

Benefits for infants include reduced risks of asthma, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and ear and respiratory infections. Benefits for mothers include lower risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, ovarian cancer and breast cancer. Just the act of holding a baby for feeding lowers stress and promotes bonding between the mother and baby.

St. Mary’s breastfeeding room is located in the Family Birth Center on the hospitals’ 3rd Floor. Breastfeeding or pumping mothers should use elevators A to reach the unit and check in at the nurses’ station. If you are pumping, please be sure to bring all equipment and supplies with you.

“Breastfeeding is entirely natural, but it’s not always accepted the way it should be,” Crowe said. “Breastfeeding-friendly rooms like ours provide a quiet, comfortable, clean, and safe place where moms and babies can relax, which helps with pumping, milk flow and latching on.”

In addition to the special breastfeeding room, St. Mary’s offers free weekly breastfeeding support groups. Bundles of Joy, a group for first-time moms and their infants, meets Mondays from 1-3 p.m., while Toddle Time, a group for mothers with young children, meets every Thursday from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Both groups meet at St. Mary’s Hospital and are facilitated by the hospital’s lactation consultants. All mothers delivering at St. Mary’s receive encouragement and support to establish the breastfeeding relationship while in the hospital and maintain it after discharge.

For more information, call St. Mary’s lactation office at 706.389.3310 or visit our lactation and breastfeeding support page.

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