Advantages and Disadvantages of Breastfeeding

As a mother or as a health-conscious professional, you may choose whether breastfeeding suits you or not. Reasons could be many or any specific. There are lots of benefits of breastfeeding for the newborn as well as the mother. But while nursing exclusively and working at the same time can be difficult for some moms. Let’s throw some light on the facts along with Advantages and Disadvantages of Breastfeeding from the viewpoint of housewives and workaholic moms.

Quick Facts About Breastfeeding in US

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the total Percentage of infants breastfed through the initial 6 months is 57.6%, while the Percentage of infants breastfed exclusively through 6 months is 24.9%. Most mothers in the United States want to breastfeed and start out doing so. Be it any profession, a mother's caress is the first support a baby needs. The initial 6 months for the baby's health are critical.

Breastfeeding, with its many known health benefits for infants, children, and mothers, is a crucial strategy to improve public health. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that infants be exclusively breastfed for about the first 6 months with continued breastfeeding alongside the introduction of complementary foods for at least one year.

Every mother would want their infants to grow healthy and well-fed. The mother’s first step towards the infant’s nutrition is when the baby is breastfed. While there are majorly some proven benefits of exclusive breastfeeding for the infants and mothers, there may be some disadvantages that can surface up and cause problems for either the baby, mother or both.

The Advantages of Breastfeeding

From an emotional experience to the first cry, from baby’s immunity to strength, these are some advantages of breastfeeding with some positive experiences you are will relish with your new born.

1. Breast Milk is Natural Diet for Baby

Breast milk is perfectly suited food for your child during infancy. It is the natural diet for the baby, which is also an ideal natural source of nutrition and strength. Natural breast milk contains 3% to 5% Fat, 0.8% to 0.9% Protein, 6.9% to 7.2% Carbohydrate, and 0.2% Mineral constituents. The protein type found in human milk is whey protein, which covers 60-80% of all the protein content. Breast milk is a completely natural food that has a perfectly balanced combination of fats, proteins, vitamins, and carbohydrates. Leukocytes present in mother’s milk helps the baby fight external and internal infections and provides immunity to the child.

2. Breastfeeding is good for mothers too

Women who regularly breastfeed their babies recover faster after childbirth. This is contradictory to women who opt not to breastfeed. Breastfeeding releases Oxytocin hormone, which helps the uterine to contract and regain its pre-pregnancy shape. Women tend to lose their pregnancy weight easier as they burn more calories. Women also absorb Calcium during lactation that helps them avoid the risk of postmenopausal osteoporosis.

3. Breast Milk is Tasty and Easily Digested

The digestive system of an infant is not as strong as an adult. Mother’s milk is the right diet for a newborn as the baby starts developing taste buds at this stage. Nothing is better than breast milk, which is sweeter, and infants can easily digest it without any gas trouble or constipation. Poo from breastfed babies have less odor as compared to the ones who aren’t.

4. Breastfeeding establishes bond

Infancy is the stage when a kid needs a special touch by someone. Breastfeeding is the best way you can strengthen the bond between you and the baby. The first six months are crucial for both as the mother and the baby recognizes each other’s touch vividly. This is what makes this relationship special and unique.

5. Breastfeeding is Convenient and Comforting

Breastfeeding is what you need to do when the child is sick or scared and needs to be comforted. Unlike the processed formula for baby-feed, you can exclusively feed your child anytime you feel convenient. You need not have to buy bottled or canned breast milk and can reduce the overhead of other supplies.

What are the Disadvantages of Breastfeeding?

This is quite reasonable that breastfeeding is not possible for everyone, or they aren’t able to do it because of specific reasons. Women have mixed opinions regarding breastfeeding, while a majority of ladies choose the former.

1. Less Time for Yourself

Breastfeeding can be exhausting sometimes as you have other stuff to handle besides feeding the baby. Even being a housewife puts loads of pressure on you where you have to tend to the daily chores and the little newborn responsibility. The next two weeks after delivery can be very cumbersome as the baby needs to be fed in every two-three hours.

2. Breastfeeding at work

Working and breastfeeding are almost impossible as there are always people surrounding you. If you prefer exclusive breastfeeding and are a working woman, breastfeeding may not turn out as good of an option, for it can be risky for the baby. Although public breastfeeding is being accepted these days, there are still some situations in which mothers have to stay careful while breastfeeding.

3. Milk Leakage Can be Embarrassing

Most mothers must have experienced this at least once in their lives. When the babies cry, mothers start producing milk, which at times might leak and cause embarrassment. New mothers have to learn to practice to avoid the leakage.

4. Breastfeeding requires different diet plan

What mothers eat or drink is fed to the baby too. While feeding the child, the diet plan is what must be taken care of specially. For example, Banana is avoided during breastfeeding as it causes constipation for the kid. Mothers should avoid fast food, oily, and spicy diets to keep the babies healthy.

5. Ladies fear of getting a bad figure

Most working women believe that breastfeeding might spoil their figure and change their breast size and shape. This doesn’t happen to all the women, while most women complain that their breasts became saggy and sore after a few weeks of breastfeeding. Some women even believe they turned less attractive because of breastfeeding.

Considering every Opinion:

Some moms prefer to breastfeed exclusively, while some do it combining with formula or supplement, some might even prefer to pump their breasts, it entirely depends how or what you prefer to feed your newborn. Natural breastfeeding can be hard in the beginning. Still, there may arise situations when you won’t be able to supply the baby naturally, as a proud mom, always have a backup plan.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Breastfeeding

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there any disadvantages to breastfeeding?

Breastfed babies tend to poop often that creates more work for the mothers. At the beginning of breastfeeding, mothers may experience pain, soreness of nipples, or even breast abscess.

How long is it safe to exclusively breastfeed?

According to the World Health Organization, exclusive breastfeeding must be continued (means no other fluids or solids must be fed to the baby) for six months. Mothers can combine breastfeeding with solid foods for the next 2 years or as long as mother/baby needs.

Does breastfeeding make your boobs sag?

There are other factors that can turn your breasts sag, aging is one such factor. When you breastfeed, the flow of milk can stretch your breast skin and tissues. Many moms worry at this stage which is not abnormal to experience. But other factors can change your breast appearance more than breastfeeding.

Why bottle feeding is not recommended?

Doctors and Paediatricians recommend that moms should avoid the use of bottles due to many reasons. A bottle could lead to an injury or other reasons like the presence of contaminating agents. For the initial six months, a baby must be breastfed only. Moms can switch to bottled milk once the child turns 6 months.

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