Breastfeeding: A Mother's Choice?

Decent Essays
A Mother’s Choice

When it comes to taking care of a newborn, it can be safe to say that parents mostly just want to do what is best for their infant’s health and wellbeing. With today’s modern families it has become a big debate on what method of feeding is best for an infant, bottle or breast. Breastfeeding is a great option, but for those mothers who may have to make the compromise of work vs breastfeeding or a mother who is simply uncomfortable with breastfeeding, they have the option of infant formula. Even though many look down on bottle feeding, formula is a healthy alternative that provides babies with the nutrients they need to grow and thrive. This taxing decision is something every mother needs to weigh for not only her own benefit,
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For mothers of newborn children their breast milk is what many consider “liquid gold”. Called this due to the color and consistence it has, which is thick and a deep yellow color its medical term is colostrum. The colostrum is the first milk produced by mothers during pregnancy and just after birth, it is very rich in nutrients and includes antibodies to protect newborns from infections (Breastfeeding, 2004). The colostrum also helps with newborn infant's digestive systems to grow and function. A mother’s milk changes as the infant grows to adapt to developmental needs. The colostrum changes into mature milk by the third to fifth day after birth. Mature milk has just the right amount of fat, sugar, water, and protein, and although it looks thinner than colostrum, it has the nutrients and antibodies an infant need for healthy development (Breastfeeding, 2004.). Another benefit of breastfeeding is that the cells, hormones, and antibodies in breast milk protect babies from illnesses and is unique in its ability to change in order to meet an infant’s ever-growing needs. Further research also suggests that breastfed babies have lower risks of: asthma, childhood leukemia, childhood obesity, ear infections, eczema (atopic dermatitis), diarrhea and vomiting. There are also advantages for the mother when it comes to breastfeeding, the actual act of breastfeeding releases the hormone oxytocin, which helps the uterus return to its pre-pregnancy size and may reduce uterine bleeding after birth (Breastfeeding,
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