When you're first breastfeeding your newborn it can be a challenge at times. You are nursing so frequently it seems like thats all you do. If you can stay strong and stick with it you will enjoy it and will be so thankful you don't have to fix a bottle of formula every time you turn around. Be patient and understand that its a learning process for you and your baby.
Breatfeeding is the best way to provide nutrition for your baby. Levon turned a year on December 11, 2009 and he is still breastfeeding 1-2 times a day. Some people tell me that he doesn't need it and that I should wean him. But I think he will wean himself when he is ready. There are many benefits to breastfeeding beyond the age of 1 year old so as long as I can provide good nutrition for him I will continue to do so.
Breastfeeding is good for every part of baby's body--from the brain to the diaper area. Here's a list:
- Brain. Higher IQ in breastfed children. Cholesterol and other types of fat in human milk support the growth of nerve tissue.
- Eyes. Visual acuity is higher in babies fed human milk.
- Ears. Breastfed babies get fewer ear infections.
- Mouth. Less need for orthodontics in children breastfed more than a year. Improved muscle development of face from suckling at the breast. Subtle changes in the taste of human milk prepare babies to accept a variety of solid foods.
- Throat. Children who are breastfed are less likely to require tonsillectomies.
- Respiratory system. Evidence shows that breastfed babies have fewer and less severe upper respiratory infections, less wheezing, less pneumonia and less influenza.
- Heart and circulatory system. Evidence suggests that breastfed children may have lower cholesterol as adults. Heart rates are lower in breastfed infants.
- Digestive system. Less diarrhea, fewer gastrointestinal infections in babies who are breastfeeding. Six months or more of exclusive breastfeeding reduces risk of food allergies. Also, less risk of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis in adulthood.
- Immune system. Breastfed babies respond better to vaccinations. Human milk helps to mature baby's own immune system. Breastfeeding decreases the risk of childhood cancer.
- Endocrine system. Reduced risk of getting diabetes.
- Kidneys. With less salt and less protein, human milk is easier on a baby's kidneys.
- Appendix. Children with acute appendicitis are less likely to have been breastfed.
- Urinary tract. Fewer infections in breastfed infants.
- Joints and muscles. Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis is less common in children who were breastfed.
- Skin. Less allergic eczema in breastfed infants.
- Growth. Breastfed babies are leaner at one year of age and less likely to be obese later in life.
- Bowels. Less constipation. Stools of breastfed babies have a less-offensive odor.
- 29% of energy requirements
- 43% of protein requirements
- 36% of calcium requirements
- 75% of vitamin A requirements
- 76% of folate requirements
- 94% of vitamin B12 requirements
- 60% of vitamin C requirements