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Breastfeed Rev. 2001 Nov;9(3):13-9.

Mother-to-mother support for women breastfeeding in unusual circumstances: a new method for an old model.


Support is critical for breastfeeding success. Mother-to-mother support via groups such as La Leche League and the Australian Breastfeeding Association, formerly Nursing Mothers' Association of Australia, is helpful to mothers in average circumstances. However, for women who are in more unusual circumstances, this support may be inadequate on its own. With the advent of the Internet, this problem has been decreased through the formation of Internet breastfeeding support groups. An Internet mailing list for women wishing to breastfeed their adopted children was used to investigate how Internet groups may provide breastfeeding support. Members of the mailing list were surveyed on issues relevant to breastfeeding support. It was identified that the mailing list overcame the problems of geographical isolation, lack of appropriate information and support and a sense of feeling alone. It is concluded that Internet breastfeeding support groups can provide mother-to-mother support to those breastfeeding in unusual circumstances. Those assisting women to breastfeed may refer women to these groups, use the groups as a resource in educating themselves or offer their knowledge and experience to such groups as a resource.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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