MARIA Ryan has seen more breasts than most.
The lactation expert has helped thousands of women learn how to breastfeed, a skill that's tough to learn in a society where the culture dictates women usually breastfeed in private.
"It's like having your learners and not knowing how to coordinate the driving," Mrs Ryan said.
"It's a learned skill and art and the reason a lot of women don't know how to do it is because we don't live in a westernised culture where we see women breastfeeding."
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The theme of World Breastfeeding Week this year is Empower Parents, Enable Breastfeeding.
There's a push for legislative change to enable working women to breastfeed, those who work in healthcare are allowed breastfeeding breaks in an eight hour shift.
You're breastfeeding your baby and any breastfeeding is liquid gold.Maria Ryan, Lactation Consultant.
But, it's not the case in all workplaces, The Hunter New England Health Lactation Consultant said.
"A lot of employers don't even know how to facilitate that, the Australian Breastfeeding Association can help workplaces make it a supportive environment," she said.
"Plus, women have great initiative to think outside the box - I've met women who work where there's not a lot of space to express their milk in private but they will have lunch earlier so they can."
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About 70 per cent of women who are discharged from hospital exclusively breastfeed, and another 10 per cent will use a mix of formula and breast milk.
Newborn babies need to breastfeed anywhere from eight to 12 times a day.
As far as Mrs Ryan's concerned, breast milk is liquid gold.
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"If we had our baby two or three months early our breast milk would be very protective for that premature infant.
"It protects against SIDS and decreases the risk of diabetes, breast and ovarian cancer for the mother."
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It doesn't come easily to everyone, Mrs Ryan said, but if mothers experience painful breast feeding in the early weeks it is abnormal and help is out there.
"You don't fail, it's not an exam or a video game," she said.
"You're breastfeeding your baby and any breastfeeding is liquid gold."
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