Knox County Tennessee

A breastfed baby is a Stronger Baby

Why breastfeed?

Research has shown that there is no better food than breast milk for a baby’s first year of life. Breastfeeding provides many health, nutritional, economical and emotional benefits to mother and baby. Babies who breastfeed are less likely to have several illnesses, including ear infections, asthma and allergies. They have less vomiting, diarrhea and colic. Studies also show that breastfeeding lowers the risk of SIDS, obesity, diabetes and childhood cancers in addition to encouraging better brain development.

For mothers, breastfeeding lowers the risk for breast and ovarian cancers, and possibly the risk of endometrial cancer. Breastfeeding strengthens a mother's bones, decreasing her risk of hip fractures and osteoporosis after menopause. Breastfeeding also lowers a mother's risk of diabetes and heart disease, promotes bonding, and helps with relaxation, possibly reducing the mother's risk of postpartum depression.

How long should I breastfeed?

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that babies be exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months of life, and that breastfeeding continue for at least a year and beyond for as long as mutually desired by mother and child.

How does the health department promote breastfeeding?

The Knox County Health Department’s WIC clinic organizes the Knox Breastfriends Group to support breastfeeding mothers and their babies; the clinic also provides breastfeeding education and counseling to program participants. The health department’s Community Health division produces a Community Breastfeeding Resource Guide for mothers and providers in addition to encouraging businesses to sign the Breastfeeding Welcomed Here Pledge.

Have Questions?
Call: 865-215-5555

Need to report a public
health emergency?

Call 865-215-5093

On the first Wednesday of every month, all KCHD offices and clinics are closed in the morning for staff in-service. On these days, the main location (140 Dameron Ave.) will open at 11 a.m. and the West Clinic (1028 Old Cedar Bluff) will open at 11:30 a.m.

Clinics will also open at 10:30 a.m. (Main location) and 11 a.m. (West Clinic) on the following Wednesdays: April 17 and July 17. All other offices will open at 8 a.m.