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  • collettec 9:21 am on 13th November 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    Breastfeeding has an image problem 

    A recent report commissioned by UNICEF UK summarises that “breastfeeding could save the NHS millions“. So why are so many clients reluctant to breastfeed?

    Encouraging clients to consider breastfeeding as an option for their new baby is a constant battle for the POWs. But why?

    The reasons may seem odd to those of us who were brought up with the slogan “breast is best”.

    They just prefer formula

    Many young women simply believe that formula milk is better for the baby. Bottle feeding is seen as “cleaner” and easier.

    Formula milk – the “designer” option – is now the norm. One of my clients, who has a 3 week old baby, refused outright to breastfeed because, as she told me, “I don’t want people to think I can’t afford milk”. Despite lack of funds, many clients use brand name formula, brand name bottles and brand name nappies as part of their social identity.

    Some women don’t even really know what formula is. I had to explain to one client that it is powdered cow’s milk; she had been under the impression it was powdered breast milk. It might seem shocking to us, but how would she know either way? It’s not covered in schools, after all.

    They just can’t relate

    For many young women, the only experience of breastfeeding they have is what they see in the media – where breastfeeding is not really spoken about, let alone seen as a normal, natural process.

    Most of the time, of course, breasts are only shown in a sexualised way. And so the idea of breastfeeding in front of anyone – even their own mother or midwife – is unthinkable to a lot of our clients.

    If a TV programme or magazine does cover breastfeeding, it tends to show the extremes – late stage breastfeeding, for example. But our young mums don’t want to take their lead from people they see as unusual. They need to see breastfeeding role models from the celebrity world.

    Whilst breastfeeding barely gets any promotion in the media, adverts for formula feed – “the next best thing” – are all over the TV. It’s not surprising that formula has taken over as the obvious choice for many new mums.

    The media’s message – or lack of a message – about breastfeeding is compounded by a lack of visibility in the outside world. So if you’re already worried about breastfeeding at home, there’s no way you’re going to do it in public. It’s just not the done thing.

    So what’s the answer?

    In an ideal world, I would love to see more celebrity mothers talking positively about breastfeeding on TV and magazines. If breastfeeding was the norm, perhaps shops and cafes would have welcoming areas for mothers to feed in privacy.

    For now, though, it’s hard to know what POWs can do directly – other than to try and educate pregnant women and new mothers through conversations and leaflets. I know from experience that we can talk to clients about “bonding with the baby” and “giving baby the best possible start” until the cows come home, but until breastfeeding begins to be talked about and normalised everywhere, it’s going to continue to be a struggle.

  • collettec 1:14 pm on 22nd October 2012 Permalink | Reply

    Supporting women to Breastfeed 

    The cost to the Health service could be reduced and a new report indicates that by increasing Breastfeeding rates in the UK could provide a return in a few years even a year. This is because of the protective effect Breastfeeding has, the report showed evidence suggesting that five illnesses; Breast cancer in the mother, gastroenteritis, respiratory infections, middle ear infections and necrotising enterocolitis in the baby.

    The report shows that even a moderate increase in Breastfeeding would reduce costs to the NHS. Part of the Pregnancy Outreach Support role is to give information and support around Breastfeeding. Many of the clients we see that want to Breastfeed always give up in the early days or before they leave the hospital.

    Due to the lack of support when they most need it due to having to ask for support, feeling a nuicance and being embarrassed.

    Although we do see these clients in the early days and can support with these issues if they want but, many, after having their baby just want to spend this precious time with them and their families.

    Only when our clients are socially isolated or have no family or friends do we support in hospital and the client has to want this support. This is when we can really make an impact, however, there needs to be a designated Breastfeeding support worker on wards not on certain days not on call but every day and during the night.

    Only when the women have established Breastfeeding and are happy with support and it continues immediately after will these women continue to Breastfeed. Hopefully this report will enable investment in effective services to increase and sustain Breastfeeding rates.

  • collettec 9:28 pm on 18th October 2012 Permalink | Reply

    UNICEF Breastfeeding Report 

    A report published today shows that the NHS could save £40m a year.  The report identifies the need for consistent quality support  services for mothers that want to Breastfeed.

    Follow the link below to read the report


  • farzanabi 2:14 pm on 12th October 2012 Permalink | Reply  


    Breastmilk overall is a healthier choice and contains natural ingredients, that are not just supplements found in formula. Breastfeeding has also been proven to reduce the risk of babies developing allergies. Breastfeeding can also reduce the number of and severity of conditions such as ear infections, bacterial meningitis and has even been proven to reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) and asthma. ( › AZ Health Topics).

    Below is the link to; an interview with a new mom-to-be, on how and why this mom found breastfeeding so important. (the following clip is in Urdu)

  • collettec 9:19 am on 9th October 2012 Permalink | Reply  


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  • collettec 9:03 am on 9th October 2012 Permalink | Reply  


  • farzanabi 3:49 pm on 10th September 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    Ante-natal support 

    Attending antenatal appointments is very important in pregnancy.

    Antenatal care monitors your health during pregnancy, as well as the health and development of your baby. It can help predict possible problems with your pregnancy or the birth, so action can be taken to avoid or treat them.

    However there are situations where  some mothers to-be  find it difficult to attend their antenatal appointments.  For example Mariam (not her real name) was referred to myself due to missing routine  ante-natal appointments on two  or more  occasions.

    At my first initial visit, I met Mariam who was staying at her cousins rented accommodation.  Through the visit I established why Mariam was missing her ante-natal appointments. Mariam left work (worked in a factory) to travel abroad to get married, when she returned she did not have a job to go back to and was not receiving any financial help from the welfare department. Due to not been able to speak English Mariam found it difficult to understand what benefits she may be entitled to and how to claim.

    When Mariam found that she was pregnant, she  was very happy but at the same time became upset . Mariam found it extremely difficult to travel to her hospital appointments for antenatal check ups, as she did not have any money to travel back and forth for her appointments. Not only did Mariam had to attend  her normal routine antenatal check ups,  she also had to attend various  Diabetic health checks as  Mariam was diabetic. Mariam pregnancy  was a high priority  as she was on insulin as well as tablets to control her diabetes .

    Mariam was very emotional and stated that she was upset due to not been able to attend some of her antenatal appointments as well as her Diabetic health appointments.

    I reassured Mariam, that I will help and support her with her antenatal appointments. I was able to take Mariam in my car to her appointments, stay with her to interpret  and drop her back home after her appointment.

    With my help and support Mariam was attending all her antenatal appointments and as a result the health professionals were able to monitor  the health and development of her baby. Attached is a clip of accompanying Mariam to attend her ante-natal appt.

  • farzanabi 3:00 pm on 13th April 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    Being a Dad is not as difficult 

    Being a parent for the first time can be daunting….

    Mohammed and his partner Leah are both under 19 years old and have just become proud first time parents to a baby girl.

    Mohammed is a full time student studying sports, Mohammed said ” I was scared when I found out that I was going to be a dad, as I did not know what was expected of me to become a good dad”.

    Pregnancy Outreach Worker Dee helped and supported Mohammed in making him understand what is entailed in becoming a father. Dee enrolled Mohammed onto Parent craft classes in order to help him understand how to bath and change a baby, how to hold a baby, the benefits of breastfeeding and much more.

    Dee helped and supported Mohammed and his partner in various ways, such as; by practically taking them to their appointments in his car, enrolling Mohammed  onto Parent craft classes in order to help him to educate himself in raising his baby to the best of his ability. Dee helped Mohammed in finding a job by referring him to the Concorde centre which is a youth organisation, to help people with voluntary work.

    Mohammed is a lot more confident in looking after his baby and is very proud to be a dad, Parent craft classes have increased his confidence and ability to become a dad. Mohammed said he can know tell his friends that being a dad is not so difficult.

  • farzanabi 3:03 pm on 5th April 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    Poverty/Financial deprivation 

    Ellie (not her real name)

    Poverty refers to many forms of deprivation such as income, housing, isolation and so on. This case study is about a young lady affected by financial deprivation.

    Ellie, a mother to-be was referred to the Pregnancy Outreach Worker service for help and support with her financial inequalities. Ellie was affected by many social implications such as drug misuse, mental health issues, unable to attend her antenatal care appointments and so on……..

    Ellie confronted many challenges in life regarding these issues, the most important issue was that Ellie had to attend 5 health and medical related appointments every week. She had to see many different consultants and therapists regarding her drug misuse and mental health issue as a result this impacted on her financial situation. Ellie was unable to afford to travel to her mendiacl appointments.

    And this is where the help and support of the Pregnancy Outreach Workers came in….

    Ellies Pregnancy Outreach Worker helped Ellie in the most crucial time in her life. The POW practically supported Ellie to her Medical appointments in her car. If it wasnt for the POW Ellie would have found it very difficult to attend these appointments. Ellie was unable to travel back and forth to her appointments  by bus or taxi, as she could not afford the cost of a bus or taxi fare.

     If Ellie did not attend her medical appointments, consequently this would have impacted on her health, however with the help and support of her POW, Ellie was able to attend her medical appointments  and as a result this helped to reduce the issue on  her finances.

  • farzanabi 2:10 pm on 5th April 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    Blog 2 Forced Marriage cont…..

    Rahila rebelled against her parents’ wishes and refused to marry someone she did not know? As a result Rahila was beaten by her father and her uncle’s due to her defiant behaviour.
    Rahila’s father told her that her marriage was going to take place next week and in the mean time she was locked in a room.

    Rahila was scared to ask any question, every time she did; she was beaten for expressing her views. Rahila felt helpless, she realised that she was going to be forced into a marriage to someone she had never met.

    Rahila decided to do something….

    Rahila asked her father is if it was ok to go with her mother to choose her wedding dress, as she wanted the perfect dress, her father was very happy to hear this and agreed to let her go with their mother to choose her wedding dress.

    Whilst out shopping Rahila told her mother that she wanted to use the toilet, she grabbed the opportunity to make a call to her friend in UK. Rahila asked her friend for her help.

    Rahila’s friend immediately informed her that there was a Forced Marriage Unit set up in Pakistan and she needs to get there. Rahila explained that it may be difficult to get out again, Rahila’s friend said that she will do everything she can to help her, Rahila informed her friend that she only has one week. Her friend said that she will try everything.

    Rahila returned home, the following day was the beginning of the wedding function. Rahila cried every day but there was no-one to listen to her.

    Four days left to the wedding, Rahila became anxious, she thought her friend did not manage to get help and decided to do something………………….

    What did she do find out in the next blog…………..

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