For a new mother, one of the best ways in which you can help your newborn acclimatize to the world is to breast feed them. A consensus supported by authorities around the world, voluminous amounts of research shows that breast milk is an unrivalled asset to your newborn. Devoid of an artificial equivalent, that can match the exact balance of nutrients and substances, breast milk is tailor-made to help protect your baby from acute and chronic illnesses.
So, what benefits can you and your newborn gain from breast feeding?
Breastfeeding aids in the release of vital hormones:
Medical studies have proven the fact that both mother and child develop a closer bond due to breast feeding. As a mother, fulfillment and joy are just some of the physical and emotional benefits that can be experienced while breastfeeding your child. During the process, hormones like Oxytocin and Prolactin are released, both of which help positively impact the experience. While Prolactin helps creates a nurturing sensation in the mother, and helps foster a sense of joy and relaxation, Oxytocin, helps develop a sense of love and attachment between the mother and child.
Such positive reaffirmation maybe one of the key factors behind why mothers, who have breastfed their first child, continue to do so with the children who follow. A sense of happiness, though, is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of benefits that both mother and child can find through the process of breast feeding.
Other Benefits For The Mother:
- 50% more protected from rheumatoid arthritis: Certain female sex hormones are thought to play a part in causing rheumatoid arthritis among women. These sex hormones get de-stimulated after breastfeeding, which is a huge advantage.
- 28% decrease in breast cancer: The longer you breastfeed, the lesser your chances of breastfeeding are according to a leading scientist.
- 10% less likely to develop cardiovascular diseases: It has been said that breastfeeding reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease more than statins, which is usually the accepted medication.
- 26% less likely to develop diabetes: Women are less likely to develop a metabolic syndrome, which is a known cause of diabetes. This is also the reason why hypertension and high cholesterol are reduced. The studies mentioned earlier all agree on this fact.
- 11% less likely to develop hypertension: In a recent study, the WHO and many other health research organizations agreed with this statistic.
- Natural birth control: This may seem like a disadvantage for some mothers, but breastfeeding does reduce the rate of maturation of eggs.
Other Benefits for Your Newborn:
- 220,000 baby lives would be saved if breastfed within an hour of birth: This is due to a statistic compiled after accounting for fewer respiratory tract infections, SIDS and many other causes of death among babies.
- 72% less risk of respiratory tract infections: Respiratory tract infections refer to conditions liketonsillitis, pharyngitis, laryngitis, the common cold and others. Breastfeeding reduces the risk of all of them till the baby is 7 to 12 months according to studies.
- 36% less risk of SIDS (Sudden infant death syndrome): SIDS more commonly known as cot death is the leading cause of death among babies aged one month to one year. Although some studies disagree, there are no chances of SIDS increasing due to breastfeeding either.
- 23% reduction in the incidence of middle ear infection: This is type of respiratory tract infection known as otitis media and its chances of occurring can be significantly reduced by breastfeeding till 12 months of age by breastfeeding.
- 15% to 30% reduction in adult/adolescent diabetes: Studies have revealed that this metabolic syndrome is also reduced in babies along with the mothers.