10 Benefits Of Breastfeeding

Every woman’s journey to motherhood is different, but one of the first decisions a new mother makes is based on breastfeeding.Lets take a look at some benefits of breastfeeding.

Breast milk is the best food to help your baby to grow and develop, and it is recommended that breastfeeding continue for at least the first 12 months, and thereafter for as long as mutually desired. Breastfeeding is an experience that can bring a mother and child closer to one another, also babies that are well breastfed are stronger, healthier and grow faster.

Mamalette these are some of the benefits of breastfeeding:

1. A Healthy Baby

Breast milk contains immunities to diseases and helps in the development of baby’s immune system.  Breastfeeding therefore protects your baby.

2. Bonding Between Mother And Baby

During breastfeeding there is skin to skin contact which helps many nursing mothers bond with their babies. This skin-to-skin contact can enhance the emotional connection between a mother and her baby.

3. Satisfies Baby’s Emotional Needs

Babies need to be held.  It is comforting for infants to be held close and cuddled while they are being breastfeeding. Breastfeeding your baby helps him or her develop emotional stability.

4. Nutrients And Protection

Naturally, breast milk contains many of the vitamins and minerals that a newborn requires except Vitamin D, so all breastfed babies should begin receiving vitamin D supplements during the first 2 months and continuing until the baby is a year old.

5. Breastfeeding Enhances Vaccine Effectiveness

Infants who are breastfed showed a great serum and secretory responses to peroral and parenteral vaccines than infants who are formula-fed. So after vaccination, it is advised you breast feed your baby.

6. Helps Pass Meconium

When babies are born, they are born with a sticky tar-like substance called meconium in their intestines. The first milk or colostrum helps move this substance through the infant’s body.

7. Free Of Charge

Breastfeeding saves you money! With breastfeeding you don’t have to spend a kobo and unless you’re pumping breast milk and giving it to your baby, there’s no need for bottles, nipples, and other supplies that can cost you money.

8. Beneficial For Mom

Helps mom lose baby weight after birth, prevent post-partum hemorrhage, and if you are breastfeeding your baby exclusively it serves as a natural contraceptive.

9. Sharp Brain

Some studies suggest that children who were exclusively breastfed have slightly higher IQs than children who were formula fed. There is strong evidence that children who were breastfed score higher on IQ tests, as well as on teacher ratings of their academic performance.

10. Easy To Digest

Infants can easily digest human milk more easily than the milk of other animals, this may be because human milk contains an enzyme that aids digestion.

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Clearing The Path For Pumping Breastmilk At Work

After the joy and excitement of having a baby, you still have to get back to work, for a number of reasons. First there’s the economic recession and the need for financial stability in homes. if you’re getting back to work and you want to keep breastfeeding, you might have to pump and express breastmilk while away from your baby. Thus you might be faced with additional challenges, pumping at work requires research, practice and patience.

You rent or buy equipment; learn how to use the equipment; we purchase the containers needed to store the milk; and then we plan when, where and how this is going to happen while we juggle work and life.

In some organisations, a nursing mother would be given time to pump and have access to a clean private room that contains refrigerator so she can express and store. But this is rare, women have had to express breast milk inside their workplace kitchen or toilet.

Most organisations don’t even recognise the fact that a nursing mom needs to pump hence the provision of time, space and refrigerator is seen as the woman’s business and not theirs. Imagine women having to pump in dirty places like the toilet, milk that’ll be their baby’s next meal, no wonder most moms wean their baby before getting back to work.

And here’s what a new mom can do to ensure that she’s given the time and space to pump when they return to work;

1. Negotiate

On getting back to work, your supervisor already know a lot has changed. Have a talk about the need to have some privacy and the time to express milk.

2. Have a plan

This will probably see a lot of revisions in the years to come but you still need a plan on when to express and how many minute you’re going to spend expressing. Include this in your plan;
• Potential locations you could pump in private.
• What you need (chair, refrigerator to keep milk cold).
• Estimated time needed.
• Suggested schedule (one that works for both you and your employer).

3. Share your plan

After coming up with a plan, share it with the HR department and/or your manager. A little talk might be needed, be prepared.

Finally, I’ll say this, you need support, in your workplace and at home. Someone who you can share your struggles with, who will lend a listening ear like your mom friend at work, your mom or even other Mamalettes, just reach out to someone who will make the journey easier.

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