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Take Me Out to the Ballgame: Tips for Breastfeeding in Public


One of the biggest challenges breastfeeding mothers and babies face is the lack of available space to breastfeed in public. While some businesses, amusement parks, and sports stadiums have made inroads in recent years, we still have a long way to go to help support mothers who want to make sure their babies receive the many benefits of breastfeeding.

Less Fouls in the Field of Breastfeeding

The Cincinnati Reds made headlines when they added beautiful lactation rooms to their Great American Ball Park. While women can also breastfeed at their seats if they choose, the nursing suite offers women the option of a private place to feed their babies. The rooms feature rocking chairs, a bathroom, changing table, and even flat-TVs so moms don’t miss out on any of the action. Dads and siblings are welcome in the suite as well.

While several Lancaster County establishments like Park City Center and Dutch Wonderland also have accommodations for breastfeeding moms, many public venues still do not offer the privacy you may desire. Here are 5 tips that could help you feel more comfortable when you breastfeed away from home.

5 Tips for Breastfeeding in Public

  • Maintain a positive attitude: You have every right to feed your baby when he or she is hungry.
  • Find a comfortable spot: If no designated area is available, look for a park bench or dressing room where you and your baby can be comfortable.
  • Create your own privacy zone: If you are with another person, ask them to position themselves to create a more private space for you. If someone approaches you, smile, and carry on normal conversation.
  • Use a baby sling: This can allow you to nurse comfortably, even while walking. And most babies love them. There are many types available. Find a style that is right for you.
  • Wear two piece outfits or clothing with nursing slits: This increases your both your comfort and ease in feeding your baby. At the beach, consider wearing a cover-up that can be pulled up from the bottom. You may want to carry a blanket or light piece of fabric to cover the baby after he or she starts to nurse.

Breastfeeding mothers have important work to do as they give their babies the best possible start in life. We can all step up to the plate to support their efforts. Encourage public areas to make proper accommodations to respect the needs of women who are making the healthy choice to breastfeed.

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Charlene Wolford, BSN, RN, IBCLC

Charlene Wolford, BSN, RN, IBCLC, is a certified lactation consultant who provides breastfeeding services at the Lancaster General Health Women & Babies Hospital. Wolford has served as a nurse for women and babies for almost 30 years. She is a passionate advocate for the health of new families.

Call: 717-544-3700

About LG Health Hub

The LG Health Hub features breaking medical news and straightforward advice to help individuals of all ages make healthy choices and reach their wellness goals. The blog puts articles by trusted Lancaster General Health clinical experts, good 'n healthy recipes, videos, patient stories, and health risk assessments at your fingertips.


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