BREAST FEEDING – ADVANTAGES OF BREAST FEEDING
Advantages to the mother
The advantages include:
- Emotional Bonding: Offers the mother a unique opportunity to give her baby the best possible start in life. The security and bonding that develop in a mother and a baby can never be achieved in a bottle fed infant.
- Convenient: It is always available and at the right temperature. It is always available, especially during night and eliminates the need for any calculation. It is free from any adulteration and contamination.
- Contraceptive Advantage: Delays menstruation and ovulation and therefore offers some degree of protection against pregnancy while breast-feeding
- Health Advantage:
- Helps in the involution/regression of the uterus and reduces the risk of post delivery bleeding and conservation of maternal iron.
- Reduced likelihood of breast cancer and ovarian cancer in women who have breast fed their babies.
- Helps the mother to lose weight and regain the normal contours of her body, due to utilization of the fat reserves laid down during the pregnancy. Thus, a woman who breast-feeds her baby regains her figure faster.
- The risk of bone loss – osteoporosis is reduced in the mother in later life.
- Economic advantages: It is much cheaper than formula/artificial milk. All it costs the family is the little extra food needed by the mother.
- Psychological effect: It generates a feeling of importance, indispensability and motherliness. In general, it provides a sense of calm and satisfaction to the mother related to the hormonal changes during breast-feeding.