Presentation Information

Heather Miller

Yes You Can! Breastfeeding A Baby With Down Syndrome

  • Speaker: Heather Miller , RN (Disability), Cert IV in Breastfeeding Education (Community)
  • Presentation Type:
  • Duration: 60 Mins
  • Credits: 1 CERP, 1 Nursing CEU, 1 CME, 0.1 Midwifery CEU

As a health professional you may find yourself supporting a mother who is breastfeeding or requires support to breastfeed her baby with Down syndrome. Babies with Down syndrome can often have additional health needs, which may affect how successful they are with breastfeeding. Down syndrome or trisomy 21 is the most common genetic cause of intellectual disability for around 1 in 700 births worldwide. People with Down syndrome are not all the same but may have similar characteristic physical features, health and developmental challenges and some level of intellectual disability. Research has shown many benefits associated with breastfeeding a baby with Down syndrome. It contributes to establishing long term skill development, particularly with speech and feeding skills, as well as aiding brain growth. It also provides an opportunity for mother baby bonding during stressful periods after learning of their baby’s diagnosis. Regardless of these known benefits, some mothers may nevertheless be told their baby will not be able breastfeed. This presentation will explore some of the common challenges mothers may face when breastfeeding a baby with Down syndrome and tips on how to address these for the mother and baby. The material presented will also assist health professionals to support mothers with babies who may have similar health/developmental needs.

Pre-Recorded Presentation