MOTHER AND CHILD; GOOD HEALTH LESSON 21
Breastfeeding your baby provides your infant with nutritional needs. Nature has provided just the right food for the young baby which costs nothing. Do remember that some moms - though they would dearly like to breast feed - sometimes are not able to (they are not able to produce milk). Don't worry about it. Speak to your Doctor and Nurse about this; they can help you with excellent breast milk substitutes.
BOOSTS IMMUNE SYSTEM
Breast milk helps to boost your baby's immune system. If you are in a squatter camp or refugee camp, try to get a Charity Organization to organize good nutrition and sufficient clean water for you to drink. If mom does not get a healthy, well balanced diet it is difficult for the body to make breast milk.
Also, try if possible to stay away from stress. Feeding your baby is a bonding experience. The time you spend cuddling baby and both of you enjoying each other's company, is so important. Sometimes mom has to go back to work after a few months, and it is possible to continue breastfeeding while at work. Find out about breastfeeding breaks.
Breastfeeding pumps offer breastfeeding moms flexibility. Mom expresses breastmilk with the pump (making sure everything is spotlessly clean). The expressed breastmilk can be stored it in a bottle, and baby can be fed from the bottle. It is best to use the milk soon after expressing. Webmd give guidelines on Storing Breast Milk (see below). All bottles and teats should be spotlessly clean.
HOW LONG SHOULD BREASTFEEDING CONTINUE
Mom can breast feed as long as she wishes to. Exclusive breastfeeding is sufficient to support optimal growth and development for approximately the first six months of life, and provides continuing protection against diarrhoea and respiratory tract infection. Breastfeeding should continue for the first year of life and beyond for as long as mutually desired by mother and child (American Academy of Pediatrics 2005).
As solids are introduced, usually around the middle of the first year, your baby will shift the primary source of nutrition from your milk to other foods.
WHEN HAS BABY HAD ENOUGH TO DRINK?
How does a mom know when baby has had enough to drink? Baby lets go of the nipple and usually falls asleep, quite satisfied. Mom needs to take baby regularly to the Baby Clinic to make sure whether baby's weight is increasing sufficiently, and for the Doctor and Nurse to monitor baby's development.
For the mom who has to bottle feed her baby, there are many types of milk feeds. Be aware that some babies struggle to digest milk; this is known as lactose intolerance. Take baby to your Doctor if baby is having problems with digestion.
Get advice from your Doctor and Nurse as to how to introduce solid food for your baby. Don't give baby alcohol, and don't allow smoking near baby. Don't drink or smoke while breastfeeding. Only take medications prescribed by your Doctor, who will know you are breastfeeding.
LA LECHE LEAGUE
La Leche League supports, informs and encourages moms who wish to breastfeed.
BREASTFEEDING IN PUBLIC
Simple, accessible clothing is helpful when out in public with baby. Some moms find a baby sling to be very helpful, others prefer to drape a shawl over their shoulder and baby. Practise at home. A loose top with a nursing bra can also be helpful. Find what works best for you. It is helpful to carry a bag with any items you may need such as extra nappies, baby wipes, shawl or sling when you go out with baby.
Some moms say that eating pears helps them to produce good amounts of breastmilk. Fruit and vegetables are healthy choices while mom is breastfeeding.
Be proud to be a mother. To birth a little one, and encourage growth with the strength and dedication of your own body is a unique vocation. Every child given to society is a blessing for our future. Being a mom is a fulltime - and important role.
La Leche League
Lactose intolerance in babies
Breastfeeding in Public
How long should a mother breastfeed
Storing Breast Milk
Breastfeeding in a sling or carrier
Baby food nutrition starting solid food
With thanks to La Leche League, Pregnant.thebump, Askdrsears, Mayoclinic, Webmd, Momtastic
*Disclaimer; Please note that the information on this Health Post is not meant to replace your Doctor or Health Professional care