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baby nursing
Breastfeeding protects the lifelong health of babies and mothers

Health organizations worldwide recommend that mothers breastfeed their babies exclusively for six months, and then continue breastfeeding for one year and beyond, even as solid foods are introduced. The longer and more exclusively a mother breastfeeds her baby, the greater the health benefits they both receive.

Support helps mothers breastfeed longer

Most mothers in Oregon plan to provide breast milk for their babies. In fact, over 90 percent of Oregon mothers start out breastfeeding. However in the weeks following birth, mothers often reduce or stop breastfeeding for a variety of reasons. With active support, these barriers can be resolved so mothers can achieve their personal breastfeeding goals and meet breastfeeding recommendations.

The Oregon Public Health Division works with community and public partners to protect, promote and support breastfeeding at every level – in the home, work environment, child care, health care system, and public settings. Families, employers, child care and health care providers, hospitals, and communities all play a role in reducing barriers and ensuring that mothers get the support they deserve.

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Breastfeeding Laws

Learn about Oregon and federal laws and regulations related to breastfeeding.

Why Breastfeeding Matters

Breastfeeding is the standard for infant feeding. Learn why breastfeeding is so important, and how you can support breastfeeding mothers. 

Support for Moms and Families

Find out why support is important to help mothers breastfeed longer and overcome barriers.

Return to Work or School

Many mothers continue breastfeeding after returning to work or school. There are many benefits for employers who support breastfeeding.

Child Care and Breastfeeding

There are many good reasons to continue breastfeeding your baby when you return to work or school. Take the time to find a child care provider who will help and support you.

Breast Milk Donating and Sharing

Learn about the Northwest Mothers Milk Bank, and about informal breast milk sharing. You should never buy breast milk online, because you can't trust that it is safe. 

Maternity Care Practices

Following evidence-based maternity care practices influences breastfeeding exclusivity and duration rates in Oregon.

Staff Training
Guidance for health care professionals, including online and in-person training offerings.

Breastfeeding Rates and Data

Links to current and historical data about breastfeeding in Oregon.

Promotion Materials

Download promotional materials related to breastfeeding.