- Breast milk contains all the nutrients needed for the child growth and development. For eg:- carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals.
- It has water content of 88% and child does not require any additional water during first few months.
- It contains number of immunological factor.
- The babies who are breast feed have better IQ than those who who were given other milk.
- It protect against illness like allergy, ear infection, etc.
- Reduces chance of postpartum hemorrhage.
- It provide protection against pregnancy.
- It is the effective way of loosing extra weight that the mother has gained during pregnancy.
- It protect against certain cancer like breast and ovarian cancer.
- Any position comfortable to her and baby.
- She can sit and lie down.
- Her back should be supported and she should not be leaning on her baby.
Position of Baby
- Baby’s whole body is supported with the mother’s hand.
- Baby’s head and body are in one line with no twist in the neck.
- Baby’s body turned towards the mother (abdomens of the baby and the mother touching each other).
- Baby’s nose is at the level of the nipple.
- The baby’s mouth is wide open.
- Most of the nipple and areola in the mouth, only upper areola visible.
- The baby’s chin touches the breast.
- The baby’s lower lip is everted.
If mother is not in the position to feed her baby (eg, ill mother, preterm baby, working mother, etc), she should express her milk in a clean container and this milk should be fed to the baby. It should be stored at room temperature for 6-8hr and in refrigerator for 24hr.
- Massage the breasts gently toward the nipples.
- Place the thumb and index finger opposite each other just outside the dark circle around the nipple.
- Press back toward the chest, then gently squeeze to release milk.
- Repeat step 3 in different positions around the areola.
Ten Steps To Successful Breast Feeding
Every facility providing maternity services (Nepal - Prasuti Griha Government Maternity Hospital, Thapathali, Kathmandu) and care for newborn infants should accomplish the following:
- Have a written breast-feeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff.
- Train all health care staff in the skills necessary to implement this policy.
- Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breast-feeding.
- Help mothers initiate breast-feeding within a half hour of birth.
- Show mothers how to breast-feed and how to maintain lactation even if they should be separated from their infants.
- Give newborn infants no food or drink other than breast milk unless medically indicated.
- Practice rooming-in (allow mothers and infants to remain together) 24 hr a day.
- Encourage breast-feeding on demand.
- Give no artificial teats or pacifiers (also called dummies or soothers) to breast-feeding infants.
- Foster the establishment of breast-feeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital or clinic.