A Lansinoh survey found that 52 percent of moms in the US breastfeed between 6-12 months, but only 19 percent nursed beyond a year. That same study found that 56 percent of moms in Turkey breastfed past 12 months, while 13 percent of UK moms and 10 percent of German moms nursed past a year. Additional data on extended breastfeeding around the world can be seen here.
|Photo credit to Kelly Verdeck|
When parents choose to introduce cow’s milk is a personal decision, though traditionally in the US, it’s around the time a baby celebrates her first birthday. But some moms, as mentioned above, choose to continue breastfeeding until their baby is 18 months, 24 months, 3 years or even older. Whatever decision you make, be assured that the benefits of breastfeeding don’t diminish for you and your baby because your child reaches a certain age. As long as you continue, and beyond weaning, breastfeeding still provides antibodies, immunities, proteins, fats, nourishment, bonding and a host of other attributes to benefit you and your baby.
Are you curious about extended breastfeeding? The site KellyMom.com has a great section on breastfeeding toddlers including:
• How often toddlers breastfeed
• Best positions for breastfeeding toddlers
• When to wean
• Facing criticism about breastfeeding (especially once baby is 12 months and older)
In the end, only you know what’s best for you and your child, and I hope you’ll enjoy the time you have together!
Have a great weekend,