As of 2015, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the World Health Organization recommend breastfeeding babies from birth until they are at least 12 months old. Children's health benefits increase the longer they breastfeed.
The AAP and WHO advise mothers to breastfeed their babies exclusively for the first six months of life and supplement breastfeeding with appropriate foods when the child is between 6 and 12 months old. The agencies recommend continuing past 12 to 24 months for as long as mutually desired by mother and child. Extended breastfeeding increases protection against respiratory illnesses, ear infections and allergies and reduces sudden infant death syndrome by one-third.