Obviously the longer you breastfeed your baby, the more benefits you both receive however, know that whatever your breastfeeding goals may be, any amount of breastfeeding is better than no breastfeeding at all!
Almost all women physically can breastfeed with the help of quality education and support. Remember though, while breastfeeding is natural it is a learned skill, so give yourself at least six weeks for everything to come together. With that said, here are 10 great reasons to breastfeed your baby:
- It all starts with the colostrum, which is a mum’s first milk. It’s so rich in antibodies and lots of other good stuff that we often call it baby’s first immunisation.
- The act of breastfeeding itself is super important because of the jaw action required, it helps develop those muscles and in turn promotes better tooth alignment.
- Breastfeeding improves baby’s eyesight and hand/eye coordination. The distance between baby and mum and the fact we swap breasts encourages eyesight development and helps baby develop a good aim!
- We can’t ignore all the lovely brain-boosting antibodies in breast milk that has never been able to be replicated in formula, which is why not being breastfed can lead to a lower IQ.
- Formula-fed babies just don’t have the same resistance to disease, especially ear infections and gastro. And it’s been proven that not breastfeeding increases the risk of SIDS.
- Breastfeeding helps your body return to your pre-pregnancy state quicker. The act of breastfeeding contracts the uterus quite quickly, and burns a few more kilojoules, about 1600 a day, as well as the fact that your metabolic rate is higher during lactation.
- If you haven’t breastfed, you are more likely to get cancer of the breast or ovaries, heart disease and osteoporosis.
- Periods take longer to return so it can be a natural contraceptive and child spacer.
- A breastfeed baby is very portable; you don’t need to take anything with you except your breasts! What’s easier than that?
- Breastfeeding is really important to our environment. The carbon footprint a breastfed baby leaves is virtually zero, yet for a formula-fed baby there’s the manufacture of formula, the tins, bottles, teats, sterilising equipment, even the extra sanitary products the mums require as well as the landfill when they are used and thrown away, then there’s all the extra dairy cattle to raise, and even all the fuel required for transportation, it just adds up and up.
The World Health Organisation recommends exclusive breastfeeding up to 6 months of age, with continued breastfeeding along with appropriate complementary foods up to two years of age or beyond.
It is a fact of life that every parent is proud of their baby and believes their little person is the most beautiful in the world. Social media has become the perfect platform to share the pride, but at what point does sharing and caring cross safety boundaries? And when does a little become too much?
We’ve always known that baby teeth are important. But now we understand even more about what we need to do to protect our children’s teeth. And why it’s essential that we do. Tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease. In Australia - around 50% of children will have at least one hole in their teeth by the age of 5 years. But this can be largely prevented by following just a few simple steps.
Massage has a noble history relating to his benefits, not just for young children but for adults as well. Some cultures use massage as a routine part of their overall health and well-being, particularly Asian and African countries. For others, it is more of a strategy used for stress management and general relaxation.
Learning how to calm a crying baby can feel like a draining, never-ending endeavour for a new parent. Sometimes there’s an easy fix: feeding, a burp, a nappy change… Other times it might feel like you’ve done everything in your power, but the baby just keeps on crying. If you can’t identify a reason for it, your baby might just be feeling overwhelmed, tired or upset. So, how to calm a crying baby in this situation?
Many women who have experienced labour and childbirth reflect on the support they received from their partner or other support person. Sharing the pleasure and the pain at such a special time, can make it a completely amazing experience.