Benefits of Breastfeeding to Mother and Baby

benefits of breastfeeding

A healthy immune system of new-born babies starts with mothers’ milk. Feeding  Mothers milk to the baby at least for 6 months boosts immunity powers and helps in building healthy baby life. It all starts with Breastfeeding. There are a number of benefits of breastfeeding to the mother and baby as well. 

Doctors always suggest Breastfeeding to the baby at least for 6 months to 1 year. This period is very crucial for babies to build their immune systems.

Benefits of Breastfeeding to your baby

Infants get the necessary ideal nutrition with mother milk. It has everything for your baby growth like vitamins, proteins and fats. Antibodies present in Breast milk protects and fights effectively against viruses and bacteria. It also easy to digest for babies.

Natural antibodies present in the breast milk of mother protects babies from various health problems like Diarrhea, Pneumonia, ear infections, gastritis. In the long term, breastfeeding helps in improving the IQ of babies. It helps in gaining the right amount of weight by babies.

Benefits of Breastfeeding to the Mother

Usually, at the time of pregnancy women gains weight. Breastfeeding helps in reducing the extra weight by burning calories which leads to losing weight faster than usual.

Breastfeeding helps in releasing oxytocin hormone which helps mothers for bringing uterus to normal size to its pre-pregnancy size, this can helps in reducing the uterine bleeding after birth.

Most importantly, breastfeeding reduces the risk chances of breast cancer, ovarian cancers and osteoporosis.

How to prepare for providing enough breastfeed to baby

 For the first few days the mother produces breast milk which is ideal, it is called “Colostrum”. Colostrum is yellowish, scant and thick. This milk is really more essential to your baby to fulfill all nutritional needs. It also helps infants to develop digestive track and prepare for digesting breast milk.

After a few days of breastfeeding, the baby needs more milk, accordingly the breast responds and produces enough milk to feed the baby.

Taking proper diet also plays a key role in producing healthy breast milk for babies.

Best position for breastfeed

Breastfeeding should be done in a comfortable position for both mother and baby. The mother should sit in a relaxed position to hold a baby comfortably before start breastfeed. Let’s have a look into recommended positions for breastfeeding,

Football Position: Hold your baby back on your forearm to hold like a football, hold head and neck using your palm. This helps in reducing the pressure on the belly while giving breastfeeding to the babies for the mothers who underwent for the cesarean.

Cradle Position: Make your baby against your body, rest your baby’s head in the crook of your elbow, so that baby feels so comfortable and fully supported. Use your other free arm around the baby neck and head to give more support.

Side Position: Laying on the bed on one side for breastfeeding is idle for breastfeeding in the night times. Using a pillow under your head is good to feed baby comfortably. Take baby close and adjust breast closure to baby mouth for feeding. Once baby perfectly latched on, give support to the baby neck and head with your free hand to start feeding.

Know the ABCs of Breastfeeding

A for AWARENESS. Feeding babies with mothers’ milk at the right time is more important. Knowing babies hungry and feeding called “On Demand”. In the first few weeks, mothers need to give breastfeeding at least 12 times a day. Usually, the baby moves hands towards the mouth and do sucking noises which are the signs of baby hungry.

B for BE PATIENT. Be patient while feeding to the infants. Usually, each time baby takes 10 to 20 minutes of time to fulfill hungry. So be patient while breastfeeding.

C for COMFORT. Preparing yourself and infants in a comfortable position plays a key role in breastfeeding. Take needed support by using a pillow or any other clothes for preparing to relax mode and giving the best comfort position to the baby as well. This will help the baby to suck milk from breast easily.

On this occasion of International Breastfeeding Week, Let’s create awareness on the importance of breastfeeding for both mother and new-born.

Dr. B. Madhavi, Chief OBS & Gynaecologist, Laparoscopic Surgeon, Department of Mother and Child Care, Prathima Hospitals.

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