Read the following article to get yourself familiarized with breastfeeding. Learn about the benefits of breastfeeding for baby and mother, get some useful breastfeeding tips and learn about duration, sufficiency and weaning.
Benefits of Breastfeeding
- Benefits of Breastfeeding for Mother – Benefits of breastfeeding are also relayed to the mother as well. Breastfeeding delays the return of your periods, decreases depression, makes you more relaxed, contracts your uterus back to normal size, and is cheaper and easier than using formula.
- Bonding with Baby – Arguably one of the greatest benefits of breastfeeding is that it allows you to bond with your baby.
- Duration – Most breastfeeding sessions will last between 20 to 45 minutes. Overall, exclusive breastfeeding (meaning no other supplementation is introduced) is recommended for at least six months.
- Sufficiency – It is important to ensure your baby receives enough milk. Does the baby nurse frequently? Can you hear him as he swallows during breastfeeding? Is he gradually gaining weight every week? Is he alert and active? If the answer is yes to these, your baby is getting enough milk.
- Weaning – Weaning a baby off your milk and onto a more adult diet can be challenging. Most Western sources recommend weaning not take place before baby is at least a year old. When first weaning and moving onto solids, avoid certain foods including gluten, nuts, and eggs as these may cause allergies. Opt for soft foods such as mashed vegetables or baby food.
The History of Breastfeeding
The subject of Breastfeeding has been splattered all over the news lately, mostly due to the debate over whether or not it is appropriate to breastfeed in public. Throughout human history, breastfeeding was a common part of day to day life.
With the industrial revolution and the increase of working hours, breastfeeding became less common place, as women now had to satisfy their work hours and conditions. A further decline in breastfeeding was seen in the 1900s – 1960s, due to negative public attitudes toward breastfeeding and due to the development of alternatives including formulas.
Although some negative attitudes toward breastfeeding still remain, the practice has of late experienced a revival and has been brought once again to the forefront of popular culture.