Updated: Sep 23, 2020
Let's try to dispel some myths and understand why breastfeeding is so important. One of the greatest gifts you can give to your baby since his birth is to breastfeed him. Although it is now known that breast milk is the best food for the newborn, many parents are still in doubt. Starting breastfeeding takes time (usually a few weeks) and, let's not deny it, effort. During the first few weeks, the baby will require breasts very frequently (even every 1-2 hours), so be prepared for several sleepless nights. Exhausted and deprived of precious hours of sleep, some mothers are led to think that their milk is somehow "wrong", too little or not nutritious, and feel compelled to supplement or even replace it with formula milk. It is not so! Give yourself time and allow your child to get to know you and gain confidence; in this way you will be able to fully enjoy all the benefits that breastfeeding offers. Let's explore the main benefits further: nutritional properties: since breast milk is a species-specific food (ie designed specifically and exclusively for the newborn) it satisfies the baby's food needs as completely as possible, has little allergenic effects and reduces the incidence of colic; protection against infections: the mother's body produces antibodies which are transmitted to the baby through the mother's milk, thus protecting it from infections. This is a very important element and completely absent in formula milk; convenience: breast milk is always available, ready to use and at the right temperature. It's free; Affective attachment: the skin-to-skin contact that breastfeeding requires provides the baby with the love and security it needs; Breast cancer risk reduction However, there are some situations in which breastfeeding is not recommended: drug addiction or alcohol abuse; AIDS or ongoing hepatitis; taking certain medications: always consult a doctor if you need to take medications while breastfeeding In the event that breastfeeding is not possible, artificial breastfeeding is therefore necessary. Use formulated milk until the first year of life and try to limit the number of people who feed the baby in order to recreate that extremely important contact for the emotional attachment between parents and baby.