Page last updated at 16:11 GMT, Thursday, 8 May 2008 17:11 UK

Breastfeeding benefits promoted

Breastfeeding (generic)
The government advises breastfeeding for first six months

Coffee mornings and a tea party are among a host of events being organised across the Lothians to raise awareness of the benefits of breastfeeding.

It comes as part of National Breastfeeding Awareness Week, which runs from 11 to 17 May.

NHS Lothian is a "strong supporter" of breastfeeding.

Coffee mornings are being held at Gilmerton Community Centre and the wing within Craigroyston Community High School.

A special tea party is being organised at Simpson's within the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh for new mums.

NHS Lothian is also providing an information stall at this weekend's Parents Like US Festival in Leith Links in Edinburgh.

The stall is on the Sunday of the three day event, while a second stall will also be at the Mayfield Leisure Centre in Dalkeith, Midlothian.

'Breast is best'

Dr Alison McCallum, NHS Lothian director of public health and health policy, said: "We all know that breastfeeding is the best, most natural option for feeding babies but we also know that sometimes, establishing breastfeeding isn't easy for some mums and the first few days after the birth can be a really difficult time.

"It's really important that people, women and their partners know that there is support and advice available from both the NHS and other agencies to help get breastfeeding established.

"We have both experts and people from all sorts of backgrounds who are willing to help mums make breastfeeding work for them and their babies.

"It's really important that women are not afraid to ask for help and support and the point of our events this week is to create informal places where mums and mums-to-be can get advice and support on starting and maintaining breastfeeding."


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