The ‘first milk’ – or colostrum – is rich in antibodies and gives newborns an immunity boost while their own immune systems are still developing.
Did you know? Breastfeeding protects your baby from ear infections, diarrhoea, pneumonia and other childhood diseases. Moreover, did you know that it also protects the mother from diabetes, breast and ovarian cancers and heart disease.
Myth 1: Breastfeeding is complicated.
Fact: Breastfeeding is a simple process.
Babies have a natural instinct to seek their mother’s breast. Some moms may require practical assistance in ensuring that their baby is properly latched to the breast initially. For both mothers and newborns, breastfeeding comes naturally after the first few tries.
Myth 2: Breastfeeding is painful
Fact: Breastfeeding is generally not painful. Sometimes it is painful due to sore nipples. Sore nipples can be treated with topical application of certain medicated creams, desi ghee, etc.
Myth 3: Before breastfeeding, you should clean your nipples.
Fact: It is not required to wash your nipples before breastfeeding. When babies are born, they are already familiar with the smells and sounds of their mother. The nipples create a sense of security and familiarity for the baby.
Myth 4: To give the mother time to rest immediately after birth, you should separate the infant and the mother.
Fact: Skin-to-skin care, also known as kangaroo mother care, is frequently encouraged by doctors, nurses, and midwives shortly after birth. Bringing your baby into direct contact with your skin, so that their skin is against yours, is a crucial step in assisting both mother and baby in initiating breast feeding.
Myth 5: While breastfeeding, you should only eat bland foods.
Fact: Breastfeeding women, like everyone else, require a well-balanced diet. From the moment they are born, babies are exposed to their mothers’ eating preferences. It is best to consult a dietitian if a mother believes her infant is reacting to a certain meal she eats.
Myth 6: If you’re breastfeeding, you can’t take any medications.
Fact: It’s critical to tell your doctor that you’re nursing and to read the directions on any over-the-counter drugs. You may need to take medicines at a specific time interval, in a specific dosage, or to use a different formulation altogether. Consult your doctor before starting any medication while breast feeding.
Myth 7: Clingy babies are those that have been breastfed.
Fact: Every child is unique. No matter how they are fed, some are clingy and some are not. Breastfeeding not only gives the finest nutrition for infants, but it is also beneficial to their brain development. Because breastfed babies are held frequently, breastfeeding has been demonstrated to improve bonding with their mothers.
Contact Kanupriya Khanna, a Sr. Consultant Nutritionist & Child Nutrition Specialist in Delhi, with over 18 years of experience in this field, if you need expert advice on nutrition and post-natal health.