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Does Returning to Work After Childbirth Affect Breastfeeding Practices?

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  • Pinka Chatterji

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  • Kevin Frick

Abstract

This study examines the effect of the timing and intensity of returning to work after childbirth on the probability of initiating breastfeeding and the number of weeks of breastfeeding. Data come from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY79). Baseline probit models and family-level fixed effects models indicate that returning to work within 3 months is associated with a reduction in the probability that the mother will initiate breastfeeding by 16–18%. Among those mothers who initiate breastfeeding, returning to work within 3 months is associated with a reduction in the length of breastfeeding of 4–5 weeks. We find less consistent evidence that working at least 35 h per week (among mothers who return to work within 3 months) detracts from breastfeeding. Future research is needed on understanding how employers can design policies and workplaces that support breastfeeding. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2005

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11150-005-3460-4
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Review of Economics of the Household.

Volume (Year): 3 (2005)
Issue (Month): 3 (09)
Pages: 315-335

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Handle: RePEc:kap:reveho:v:3:y:2005:i:3:p:315-335

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Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=109451

Related research

Keywords: breastfeeding; maternal employment; maternity leave; 112;

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References

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  1. Nelson, Charles R & Startz, Richard, 1990. "The Distribution of the Instrumental Variables Estimator and Its t-Ratio When the Instrument Is a Poor One," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 63(1), pages S125-40, January.
  2. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1994. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," NBER Technical Working Papers 0151, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Joseph G. Altonji & Todd E. Elder & Christopher R. Taber, 2005. "Selection on Observed and Unobserved Variables: Assessing the Effectiveness of Catholic Schools," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 151-184, February.
  4. Blau, Francine D & Grossberg, Adam J, 1992. "Maternal Labor Supply and Children's Cognitive Development," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 74(3), pages 474-81, August.
  5. Kenneth Bollen & David Guilkey & Thomas Mroz, 1995. "Binary outcomes and endogenous explanatory variables: Tests and solutions with an application to the demand for contraceptive use in tunisia," Demography, Springer, vol. 32(1), pages 111-131, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Michael Baker & Kevin S. Milligan, 2007. "Maternal employment, breastfeeding, and health: Evidence from maternity leave mandates," NBER Working Papers 13188, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Rachel Gordon & Robert Kaestner & Sanders Korenman, 2007. "The effects of maternal employment on child injuries and infectious disease," Demography, Springer, vol. 44(2), pages 307-333, May.
  3. Thuan Q. Thai & Mikko Myrskylä, 2012. "Rainfall shocks, parental behavior and breastfeeding: evidence from rural Vietnam," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2012-009, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.

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