Manual Breastfeeding Your Baby: The Right Choice

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Child feeding and human rights | International Breastfeeding Journal | Full Text

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Listen show more. More show more. Tags: Babies and toddlers Babies and toddlers - Feeding your baby. It is up to you and your baby to decide when the time is right to stop breastfeeding. Aim to breastfeed for six months, then gradually introduce appropriate family foods in the second six months while continuing to breastfeed.

Breastfeeding even for a short time is beneficial. Stopping breastfeeding is called weaning. It is up to you and your baby to decide when the time is right. The World Health Organization recommends that all babies be exclusively breastfed for six months, then gradually introduced to appropriate family foods after six months while continuing to breastfeed for two years or beyond.

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Some babies decrease the number of breastfeeds as they begin to be able to digest solid food. The first foods are really tastes and not much is digested or able to be used by the baby. It is often not until nine to 12 months or later that babies are able to actually ingest swallow and use the solid foods that they eat. Breastmilk in the first year Breastmilk contains all the nourishment needed to promote normal healthy growth and development in babies in their first six months of life and remains the most important food during their first year.

Child feeding and human rights

Babies weaned from breastmilk prior to their first birthday will need to be given infant formula. Please consult your maternal and child health nurse for further information on this. Infant formulas are generally not necessary after the first 12 months, as your child should be then receiving a large range of family foods including dairy products. Breastfeeding benefits Breastfeeding even for a short time is beneficial.

There is ample evidence that babies who are breastfed for the first six months of life do not suffer from as many or as severe episodes of common childhood illnesses. These include gastroenteritis, respiratory illnesses and middle ear infections. Stopping breastfeeding early Sometimes, weaning needs to happen earlier or more quickly than planned. It is normal for a mother to feel sad when she weans, especially if it is earlier than expected. A mother may feel she has no choice but to wean. However, most breastfeeding difficulties can be overcome with help.

An Australian Breastfeeding Association counsellor, lactation consultant or maternal and child health nurse can offer you information and support. Returning to the paid workforce need not mean having to wean. Many women combine breastfeeding with part or full-time work, study and other commitments.


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If you decide on a bottle, eventually your baby will need to be weaned from that. Start with whichever breastfeed of the day your baby seems least interested in. The concentration of antibodies to bacterial and viral diseases is increased as weaning progresses and milk supply reduces. This ensures that your baby is protected as they are being introduced to new foods and exploring new surroundings. Remember to give your baby plenty of cuddles during the weaning process so that you and your baby still have plenty of close time together.

Slowly reducing the number of breastfeeds protects your baby during the weaning period and will also help you avoid problems such as mastitis. If you need to wean your baby quickly, talk to a healthcare professional or a lactation consultant about caring for your breasts. Health professionals recommend exclusive breastfeeding for six months, with a gradual introduction of appropriate family foods in the second six months and ongoing breastfeeding for two years or beyond. Iron requirements A baby born at full term has a store of iron passed on from the mother during pregnancy.

Breastmilk contains small amounts of readily absorbed iron, and recent studies have shown that the risk of iron deficiency is very low in full-term healthy breastfed babies who continue to breastfeed past six months as solids are introduced. Breastfeeding while pregnant If you become pregnant, you may choose to continue to breastfeed or you may like to gradually wean your baby. This is an individual choice. Whether or not you choose to continue breastfeeding, it is important to maintain a healthy diet.

Seek advice from your health professional or the Australian Breastfeeding Association. Extended breastfeeding Some mothers and babies enjoy breastfeeding so much they are in no hurry to stop. It is not unusual for children up to four years of age to continue to be breastfed. It can be helpful to have information to give your family and friends about why you have decided to keep breastfeeding.


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This may include information about the continued health benefits, security and comfort for your child. The child who refuses to be weaned You may be ready to cease breastfeeding, but your child may resist all your attempts to do so. There are many strategies for weaning a baby. If your child can talk and understand well, talk with them about your breastfeeding.

Explain that you are going to stop and introduce other ways that you can enjoy being close together. You could seek professional advice about weaning or difficulties associated with weaning.

Breastfeeding vs. Formula Feeding

References Weaning , Australian Breastfeeding Association. More information here. Breastfeeding through pregnancy and beyond , Australian Breastfeeding Association. Promoting proper feeding for infants and young children , World Health Organization. Confused about introducing solids?

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Breast-Feeding

Veneman on the crucial role of breastfeeding [PDF]. Press release: Poor feeding leads to nearly one-fifth of child deaths. World Breastfeeding Week Skip to main navigation Skip to content.

Breastfeeding with the Thompson Method

Breastfeeding: The best choice for babies Share. New enhanced search. There is no substitute for mothers milk. Many more millions suffer from infectious diseases and malnutrition, never reaching their full potential because they were bottlefed. With education and support you can successfully breastfeed your baby, happily and healthily! Breastfeeding is an important women's issue, human rights issue, health issue and feminist issue.