Myth or Facts: The Truth About Breastfeeding

There is much confusion for new mothers when it comes to breastfeeding. From health care workers and hospital staff to friends and family, everyone seems to have an opinion. Below is some information concerning common myths that have been dispelled so that mothers can better understand the benefits and make an informed decision concerning nursing their baby.

1. Formula is as nutritious as human milk – It cannot be overemphasised how much better human milk is over formula. No formula possesses all of the essential nutrients and antibodies that human milk has. These nutrients are critical to the physical, mental and emotional development of the baby. For instance, colostrum is the first food for newborns and contains rich nutrients that are concentrated to help the baby pass its first stools. Human milk also contains growth factors while formula has bovine factors. Also, human milk changes as babies grow to meet their changing needs. Since human milk is about 87 percent water, there is no need to provide the baby with additional water.

2. Breastfeeding is uncomfortable – Breastfeeding is not supposed to be painful. Should it hurt, this could be because the baby’s jaws are not correctly positioned. Babies ought not to have to turn their heads to feed. A nursing pillow can be used to properly position the baby so that both infant and mother are as comfortable as possible. It is also a handy travel device, making breastfeeding away from home easier. Additionally, it can be used in a similar fashion as a seat to prop the baby. Mothers can choose products like the Mombo nursing pillows with a variety of features, or something as simple as an actual bed pillow. Regardless of the choice, it can provide ample comfort.

In addition, some mothers might experience nipple cracking in the first few days or until this sensitive area toughens up a bit. However, an application of breast milk to the affected area is the most natural cure for chaffing and cracks. Allowing the applied breast milk to air dry generally does the trick.

3. Formula fed babies usually sleep better – There is no scientific fact that shows that babies on formula sleep more soundly. The fact is that they may sleep longer since formula is much harder to digest than human milk. However, when nursing a baby, it is much better for the baby to feed every few hours rather than overloading their systems which interferes with their digestion.

4. Nursing babies should not have an occasional bottle or they could stop wanting to feed – By instinct, babies actually know the difference between sucking a nipple and suckling at the breast. The difference rarely confuses babies according to experts. There may be times when it is necessary for a mother to be away during a regular feeding. This is when using a bottle containing expressed breast milk is advisable. A mother can experiment with this before actually having another person feed the baby in her absence.

5. Breastfeeding is tiresome and makes it harder for a woman to return to work – First, mothers can use aids to help keep them from becoming fatigued. For instance, propping the legs and sitting in comfortable chairs or well supported bed helps very much. Many women return to work or school and continue to breastfeed. They usually breastfeed exclusively while on maternity leave and then pump or express milk when they are separated.

Contrary to what some may believe, health care providers are not always very knowledgeable about breastfeeding. This is because the practical aspects of nursing are not always included within the course of their medical training. Therefore, women can learn about how to breastfeed successfully through useful books, by attending classes and joining support groups such as La Leche League.

Jamica Bell is a freelance writer and breastfeeding advocate and contributes this article as a meaningful way to equip new mothers. Bright Starts’ Comfort and Harmony line provides the Mombo nursing pillows for the express enjoyment of breastfeeding mothers and their infants. It’s vibrating feature, two sided surface, and unique designs make it a crucial support for Mommies and babies.

Comments are closed.