Results: Breastfeeding Rates

National Immunization Survey (NIS)

Breastfeeding Among U.S. Children Born 2010–2017, CDC National Immunization Survey

Percentage of U.S. Children Who Were Breastfed, by Birth Year1,2,3

Percentage of children who were breastfed by year, any breastfeeding
Percentage of U.S. Children Who Were Breastfed, by Birth Year - Exclusive Breastfeeding
Percentage of children who were breastfed by year, any breastfeeding
Percentage of U.S. Children Who Were Breastfed, by Birth Year - Exclusive Breastfeeding
  1. Data from 2010 to 2015 births were based on landline and cellular telephone sampling and data for 2016 births and onwards were based on cellular telephone sampling only. See Survey Methods for details and data prior to 2010 at Data, Trends, and Maps.
  2. Data from U.S. territories are excluded from national breastfeeding estimates to be consistent with the analytical methods for the establishment of Healthy People 2020 targetsexternal icon on breastfeeding.
  3. Exclusive breastfeeding is defined as ONLY breast milk—NO solids, water, or other liquids.
Percentage of U.S. Children Who Were Breastfed, by Birth Year, National Immunization Survey, United States (Percentage ± half 95% Confidence Interval)1,2, 3
Birth Year
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Ever Breastfed 76.7±1.2 79.2±1.2 80.0±1.2 81.1±1.1 82.5±1.1 83.2±1.0 83.8±1.2 84.1±1.0
At 6 months 47.5±1.4 49.4±1.5 51.4±1.5 51.8±1.4 55.3±1.4 57.6±1.4 57.3±1.6 58.3±1.4
At 12 months 25.3±1.3 26.7±1.3 29.2±1.4 30.7±1.3 33.7±1.3 35.9±1.3 36.2±1.5 35.3±1.4
Exclusively through 3 months 37.1±1.4 40.7±1.5 43.3±1.6 44.4±1.4 46.6±1.4 46.9±1.4 47.5±1.6 46.9±1.4
Exclusively through 6 months 17.2±1.2 18.8±1.2 21.9±1.4 22.3±1.1 24.9±1.3 24.9±1.2 25.4±1.3 25.6±1.2
  1. Data from 2010 to 2015 births were based on landline and cellular telephone sampling and data for 2016 births and onwards were based on cellular telephone sampling only. See Survey Methods for details and data prior to 2010 at Data, Trends, and Maps.
  2. Data from U.S. territories are excluded from national breastfeeding estimates to be consistent with the analytical methods for the establishment of Healthy People 2020 targetsexternal icon on breastfeeding.
  3. Exclusive breastfeeding is defined as ONLY breast milk—NO solids, water, or other liquids.
Breastfeeding Rates by State and Socio-demographics 1
“Any” and “Exclusive” Breastfeeding Rates Birth Year
-by States 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010
-by Sociodemographics 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010
  1. Because of changes in the sampling frame in 2011 and in 2018 (See survey methods for details) and small sample sizes, states should use caution when comparing prevalence estimates from year to year.

Percentage of Breastfed Children Who Were Supplemented with Infant Formula, by Birth Year, National Immunization Survey, United States1,2,3

Percentage of Breastfed Children Who Were Supplemented with Infant Formula, by Birth Year, National Immunization Survey, United States
  1. Data from 2010 to 2015 births were based on landline and cellular telephone sampling and data for 2016 births and onwards were based on cellular telephone sampling only. See Survey Methods for details and data prior to 2010 at Data, Trends, and Maps.
  2. Data from U.S. territories are excluded from national breastfeeding estimates to be consistent with the analytical methods for the establishment of Healthy People 2020external icon targets on breastfeeding.
  3. Formula supplementation is defined as supplementation of breast milk with formula (with or without other supplementary liquids or solids) among infants breastfed before the age specified (2 days, 3 months, or 6 months). See survey methods for details.
Percentage of U.S. Breastfed Infants Who Were Supplemented with Infant Formula, by Birth Year, National Immunization Survey, United States (Percentage +/- half 95% Confidence Interval)1,2,3
Birth Year
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Before 2 days 22.8±1.4 19.4±1.3 19.1±1.3 17.1±1.2 15.5±1.0 17.2±1.2 16.9±1.3 19.2±1.3
Before 3 months 35.4±1.8 31.5±1.8 29.3±1.8 29.2±1.6 27.8±1.5 28.8±1.5 29.1±1.7 30.9±1.6
Before 6 months 42.8±2.2 37.9±2.0 35.4±2.1 34.9±1.8 33.8±1.7 34.5±1.7 33.5±1.9 36.2±1.8
  1. Data from 2010 to 2015 births were based on landline and cellular telephone sampling and data for 2016 births and onwards were based on cellular telephone sampling only. See Survey Methods for details and data prior to 2010 at Data, Trends, and Maps.
  2. Data from U.S. territories are excluded from national breastfeeding estimates to be consistent with the analytical methods for the establishment of Healthy People 2020 targetsexternal icon on breastfeeding.
  3. Formula supplementation is defined as supplementation of breast milk with formula (with or without other supplementary liquids or solids) among infants breastfed before the age specified (2 days, 3 months, or 6 months). See survey methods for details.

Rates of Any and Exclusive Breastfeeding by Age Among Children Born in 2017, National Immunization Survey, United States1,2,3

Rates of Any and Exclusive Breastfeeding by Age Among Children Born in 2017, National Immunization Survey, United States
  1. Data from U.S. territories are excluded from national breastfeeding estimates to be consistent with the analytical methods for the establishment of Healthy People 2020external icon targets on breastfeeding.
  2. Exclusive breastfeeding is defined as ONLY breast milk—NO solids, water, or other liquids.
  3. The data point for exclusive breastfeeding begins at 7 days of life.

Rates of Any and Exclusive Breastfeeding by Age Among Children Born in 2017 (Percentage +/- half 95% Confidence Interval)1,2

U.S. National Breastfeeding Rates, 2017 Births
Child Age Breastfeeding (n=20016) Exclusive Breastfeeding (n=19417)
At birth 84.1±1.0
7 days 83.3±1.0 63.6±1.4
14 days 82.5±1.1 61.8±1.4
21 days 81.3±1.1 59.7±1.4
28 days 80.5±1.1 58.9±1.4
1 month 80.1±1.1 58.5±1.4
2 months 75.9±1.2 52.5±1.4
3 months 71.2±1.2 46.9±1.4
4 months 65.2±1.3 39.6±1.4
5 months 60.6±1.4 31.4±1.3
6 months 58.3±1.4 25.6±1.2
7 months 49.5±1.4
8 months 46.7±1.4
9 months 43.3±1.4
10 months 39.9±1.4
11 months 37.5±1.4
12 months 35.3±1.4
18 months 14.6±1.0
  1. Data from U.S. territories are excluded from national breastfeeding estimates to be consistent with the analytical methods for the establishment of Healthy People 2020 targetsexternal icon on breastfeeding.
  2. Exclusive breastfeeding is defined as ONLY breast milk—NO solids, water, or other liquids.
U.S. National Breastfeeding Rates, 2017 Births
Child Age Breastfeeding (n=20016) Exclusive Breastfeeding (n=19417)
At birth 84.1±1.0
7 days 83.3±1.0 63.6±1.4
14 days 82.5±1.1 61.8±1.4
21 days 81.3±1.1 59.7±1.4
28 days 80.5±1.1 58.9±1.4
1 month 80.1±1.1 58.5±1.4
2 months 75.9±1.2 52.5±1.4
3 months 71.2±1.2 46.9±1.4
4 months 65.2±1.3 39.6±1.4
5 months 60.6±1.4 31.4±1.3
6 months 58.3±1.4 25.6±1.2
7 months 49.5±1.4
8 months 46.7±1.4
9 months 43.3±1.4
10 months 39.9±1.4
11 months 37.5±1.4
12 months 35.3±1.4
18 months 14.6±1.0
  1. Data from U.S. territories are excluded from national breastfeeding estimates to be consistent with the analytical methods for the establishment of Healthy People 2020 targetsexternal icon on breastfeeding.
  2. Exclusive breastfeeding is defined as ONLY breast milk—NO solids, water, or other liquids.