Written by Dr.Md.Redwanul Huq (Masum)
Monday, 16 January 2012 06:46


It is the feeding of an infant or a young child with breast milk directly from the female human breasts rather than from a baby bottle or from any other container.

Good position for breast feeding:

  • Mother should sit straight up in her chair or any other comfortable sitting place, place the pillow on her lap
  • She should put her baby on the pillow, take off his/her wraps so that he/she is easier to manage
  • While the mother nursing her baby with her right breast she should hold her baby with her left arm. With his/her bottom tucked under mother’s elbow, she should place her left arm along his/her back, with the palm of her hand on the baby’s upper back and shoulders, her thumb and index finger should make a comfortable “C” around the base of the baby’s skull.
  • The baby should be lying horizontally on the pillow, with his/her head at the same level as his bottom and should be tummy to tummy with the mother with his/her nose opposite her nipple.

Advantages of breastfeeding:

Health Benefits to breastfeeding babies-

  • Colostrum (first breast milk) covers the GIT and thus prevent harmful bacteria and allergy -triggering protein molecules from entering into baby’s blood
  • Improved brain and nervous system development and higher IQ
  • The baby receive the most optimum and complete mixture of nutrients & antibodies
  • The babies have decreased incidences of vomiting and diarrhea
  • Increased bone density and strength
  • Protection against gastroenteritis, necrotizing entero-colitis (NEC)
  • Breast milk keeps pace with the baby’s individual growth and changing nutritional demands
  • Decreased risk of childhood diabetes
  • Protection against asthma, allergies, eczema, and severity of allergic diseases
  • Decreased risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
  • Decreased risk of chronic constipation, colic, and other GIT upsets
  • Protection against Crohn’s disease, ulcerative entero-colits, meningitis, botulism, and childhood lymphoma
  • Higher antibody response to vaccines
  • Protection against respiratory illnesses, bronchitis, pneumonia, kidney infections, septicemia, ear infections
  • Decreased possibility of tooth decay
  • Proper nursing supports facial structure development, straighter teeth, enhanced speech and augments vision.
  • Decreased risk of heart disease later in life
  • Helps in emotional and spiritual  development
  • Development of warm bonding and emotional relationship with the mother
  • Decreased rate of hospitalization in the first year of life
  • Decreased risk of childhood obesity
  • Decreased risk of vitamin E deficiency and Iron deficiency anemia
  • Factors in human milk demolish E coli, salmonella, shigella, pneumococcus, streptococcus etc
  • Decreased risk of pyloric stenosis, inguinal hernia, acute appendicitis, rheumatoid arthritis.

Health Benefits to mother who breastfeed-

  • Helps delay return of fertility and to space among subsequent pregnancies
  • Decreased risk of anemia
  • Protection against osteoporosis and hip bone fracture later in life
  • Helps uterus contract after birth to control postpartum bleeding
  • Decreased risk of breast, cervical, ovarian and endometrial cancers
  • Develops emotional relationship and bonding with the child
  • Decreased risk of mortality for women with rheumatoid arthritis
  • Helps mother’s body return to its pre-pregnancy state sooner
  • Mother miss less time off from work because of child related illnesses.

Environmental and Social benefits-

There are advantages of breastfeeding for the environment and the society also like-

  • Reduced global pollution by decreasing use of resources and energy essential to produce, process, package,distribute, promote and dispose of materials formed by the manufacture and use of artificial baby milk
  • Reduced absence in the place of work due to children’s illnesses
  • Reduced cost of healthcare by promoting healthier children and mothers.

Other Benefits-

  • The strong bond that is developed with nursing is much more strong
  • Breastfeeding makes mother feel good and the hormones produced during nursing have an endorphin effect giving the mother a relaxed feeling
  • During times of disaster, there is nothing to worry about finding formula
  • Nursing mother gets more rest than formula feeding mothers
  • No screaming baby in middle of the night waiting on the formula to heat up
  • Breastfeeding is more convenient when traveling, the milk is always available, sterile, and the right temperature
  • Breast milk tastes great
  • Mother can ever lose weight without dieting or exercise.

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