Breastfeeding a baby for the first six months after delivery is significantly important to both the mother and the child. When a baby is born, the only viable option for acquiring important nutrients for the body is through comprehensive breastfeeding. Not only does breastfeeding play a vital role in the body of the infant, but it also has fundamental benefits to breastfeeding mothers. WIC class online help writes papers on the benefits of breastfeeding for all students struggling with WIC classes. Breast milk is the best option to provide ideal nutrients to the body of the infant. When an infant is exclusively breastfed in the first six months, various important nutrients are made available in the body of the infant.
Benefits of Breastfeeding the First six Months for Both the Mother and the Baby
When an infant is exclusively breastfed in the first six months, various important nutrients are made available in the body of the infant.
- Nutrients- Breast milk contains all the nutrients and minerals that a baby needs in the first six months of life. The versatility of breastfeeding a child for the first six months changes significantly according to the infant’s needs from the first month onward. After delivery, the milk is thick and yellowish, commonly referred to as colostrum, and is rich in vital proteins inclusive of low sugar amounts, which is a key compound necessary for the infant.
- Provides Antibodies– Another benefit of exclusive breastfeeding of an infant for the first six months is that the milk provides important antibodies in the blood of the baby to help in developing a strong immune system. Breast milk is enriched with vital antibodies that once in a child, help in fighting off both bacterial and viral infections. When a child is born, the immune system is weak and needs significant boosting from antibodies contained in the mother’s breast milk. Colostrum milk is rich with a substantial amount of immunoglobin and other key antibodies required by the child. This is attributed to the fact that, when the mother is exposed to both bacterial and viral infection, she develops responsive antibodies which are subsequently passed into the breast milk and finds ways into the body of the infant through breastfeeding. As such, a baby develops an immune system and protective layer across the infant’s nose through the digestive system.
- Boost Immunity– Breastfeeding infants helps in reducing the chances of various infections such as middle ear complications, preventing respiratory system infections, and protecting the infant from flu and colds. Breastmilk also helps infants develop resistance from gut infections, damage to intestinal organs, sudden death infant syndrome, and infections such as allergies and bowel inflammation. Breastfeeding also helps an infant develop a healthy weight while preventing obesity. Whereas breastfeeding benefits the infant, it has several positive impacts on the breastfeeding woman.
- Balance hormones– Breastfeeding a child helps mothers check their hormonal balance which helps them have a good appetite which consequently makes them eat more for enough milk production. Exclusive and constant breastfeeding helps mothers burn excess body fat, which helps in maintaining a healthy body metabolic index. During pregnancy, the uterus grows and expands to accommodate the growing fetus. However, after birth, breastfeeding helps the involution process of uterus contraction through increased oxytocin production. After birth, an increased amount of oxytocin production also reduces the chances of subsequent bleeding associated with the implications of the birth process.
- Reduce stress– Exclusive breastfeeding helps lactating mothers reduce instances of depression, which is enhanced by the production of oxytocin. When women give birth, there is a likelihood of developing postpartum depression. However, due to the increased production of oxytocin hormone, their psychological body system develops the ability to provide care to the infant, which helps them relax hence developing a strong bond between the child and the mother. Lengthy breastfeeding is associated with reduced disease risks such as breast and ovarian cancer.
- Its economical– Exclusive breastfeeding is economical as it helps mothers save time and money that otherwise may have been spent on acquiring infant formula milk. As such, breastfeeding mothers do not have to worry about purchasing expensive supplementary products for their infants.
Breastfeeding is important to the infant as it helps boost the immune system as well as availing fundamental nutrients to the body. Additionally, breastfeeding helps mothers reduce instances of postpartum depression associated with childbirth. Either way, breastfeeding helps both the mother and the infant in significant proportions with more positive benefits on the infant. As such, breastfeeding is relatively fundamental in the early life of an infant and should be provided exclusively.