Today is the last day of World Breastfeeding Week (Aug 1-7) so I'm just in time to get this post in. I love breastfeeding and while I know it doesn't work out for everyone....you must at least try to make it work. I stuck it out for close to 3 months with searing pain at every feed and blocked ducts every couple of days before finally 'enjoying' it. Today is also Aaron's birthday and I estimate that he would have had his 4000th feed some time today (or maybe yesterday/tomorrow).
Anyway, there was an interesting article published over the weekend regarding breastfeeding and babies in the developing world. The thing is that you would think the developing world would still be breastfeeding the old fashioned way since it is free and convenient, but sadly, they are not. The formula people are good marketers!
The key to breastfeeding is really to start within the first hour after birth. I had always thought of this from the standpoint of a 'successfull breastfeeding career' but now there is evidence that the first hour has the potential to save lives.
Here are some of the points I've picked out of the article I mentioned:
Breastfeeding within the first hour after birth could save 1 million babies under the age of 28 days.
Waiting longer than 1 hr, but still within the first 24 hrs, will save 720,000 babies.
Exclusive breastfeeding (ie no solids or other milks) reduced the chances of death by 4 times.
So there you have it. Researched, documented and statistically proven facts about breastfeeding. It is not that I need convincing. The points are here as easy reference for any other mothers who need the facts to arm themselves against the people who are not yet informed. Although...these are but 3 of many good reasons to breastfeed. Here is another interesting article.
And remember, don't let anyone tell you that there is nothing coming out!