Myths and facts about breastfeeding

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Breastfeeding is very important for both infant and mother. Breast milk contains all the necessary macronutrients and minerals that shield immune system of your baby. According to studies, breastfeeding seems to associate with several metabolic diseases, like obesity, diabetes and inflammatory bowel syndrome. So let’s take look at the most common myths of breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding is a painful process

Myth. Breastfeeding when done properly is not painful. In the early days of breastfeeding, you may notice irritation around the nipples, but it is temporary. New mothers should learn about the correct technique of breastfeeding. Usually, whenever there is a pain, your baby does not breastfeed properly. So pause breastfeeding for a while and put the baby back again on your breast properly. Generally, you should not stop breastfeeding due to pain, nor in cases of mastitis or breast inflammation. If the pain does not go away or improve, then consult a breastfeeding counselor.

Beyond breast milk, the baby does not need either water or tea for the first few months

Fact. Mother’s milk has all the necessary ingredients for the proper growth of the infant, so there is no need either for water or tea. On the opposite, many times consumption of other drinks, apart from breast milk cause problems, that is why they should be avoided.

After breastfeeding, nipples need to be cleaned

Myth. There is a false belief that the breast should be cleaned after each breastfeeding, as the latest can lead to irritation. Breast milk has substances with antimicrobial actions which help heal skin irritation. It is advisable to massage the nipples with circular movements with some milk and use 2-3 times a day special nourishing and moisturizing nipple creams. Avoid soaps and powerful cleansers.

Breastfeeding facilitates weight loss

Fact. During breastfeeding, daily energy requirements are significantly increased (additional ~500kcal per day). A proper and balanced diet will help you lose weight. All you need to keep in mind is getting all the necessary nutrients through your diet.

If there is not much milk production, breastfeeding should be discontinued

Myth. Milk production follows a production-demand relationship. The more an infant breastfeeds, the more milk is produced. You should breastfeed your baby as often as it needs. Insufficient weight gain or even increased weight gain are not related to milk production. For this reason, it is advisable an infant breastfeed as soon after childbirth.

Infant milk formulas are not equal to breast milk

Fact. Despite the development of food technology, none infant milk formula can approach the nutritional value of breast milk. Even in cases of lactose intolerance, constipation or colics, breast milk prevails over breast milk substitutes as it is more digestible and minimizes gastrointestinal disturbances and infections.

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