The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that infants be exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months and then continued breastfeeding along with appropriate foods for the first year. A lot of mothers have the intention to breastfeed their child. However, breastfeeding is initially not easy and a lot of mothers will turn to formula. Up to 60% of mothers don’t breastfeed for as long as they intended.
Why do so many mothers stop breastfeeding when they intend to do it longer? Well, as previously stated, breastfeeding initially is not easy. There are several reasons why mothers stop but the most influential factors are typically issues with lactation and latching, initial pain, concerns about infant nutrition and weight, unsupportive work policies, cultural norms or lack of family/friend support.
You may ask yourself, what are the benefits to breastfeeding? Why even do it if formula is “just as good”. Well, the benefits are not only for the infant but also the mother. Infants that are breastfeed have the reduced risks of asthma, obesity, Type 2 diabetes, ear and respiratory infections and sudden infant death syndrome. The benefits for the mother include lower risk of heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, ovarian cancer and breast cancer. In addition to medical benefits, breastfeeding provides a very special bond between the mother and the infant. The infant will breastfeed not only for food but also for security, to feel close to the mother and to help with sleep. While an infant that is formula fed will still gain a special bond and receive security through other means, there is something more intimate about breastfeeding.
Breastfeeding also makes it easier to feed your baby anywhere. No need to worry about warming up formula or getting it ready when the baby is screaming for food. Breastfeeding is more cost effective for families. It could cost up to $100 a month for formula which adds up to $1200 a year.
Breastfeeding is not for everyone and there are many reasons why a woman shouldn’t breastfeed. However, if you are wanting to breastfeed and would like more information about it. Please visit the sites listed.
https://www.llli.org/breastfeeding-info/ -Monthly support groups all over the US