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How breastfeeding Benefits the Mother? Read what expert says

We spoke to Dr Aravinda Sathish, Consultant - Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Manipal Hospital Doddaballapur, who talked about the health benefits of breastfeeding for the mother

How breastfeeding Benefits the Mother? Read what expert says
Bangalore, First Published Aug 10, 2022, 7:00 AM IST

Breastfeeding is a wonderful gift a mother could give herself and her infant. Mother’s milk provides infants with the best nutrition and antibodies to support their growth and protect them against the risk of infections, allergies, and other childhood illnesses. So, there is no doubt that breast milk has huge health benefits for the baby, but studies also indicate that breastfeeding is equally beneficial for the mother. A woman experiences both physical and emotional growth through regular breastfeeding.

Benefits of Breastfeeding for the Mother:
Breastfeeding is ideal for new moms; it gives them a sense of maternal fulfilment. Many of them find themselves in a calm and positive mood, boosting their self-esteem. It mainly happens as breastfeeding releases soothing hormones (oxytocin and prolactin) that reduce stress, motivate mother-infant bonding, and lower the risk of postpartum depression.

Also Read: World Breastfeeding Week 2022: When should a mother stop breastfeeding and why

Doctors highly advise direct skin-to-skin contact (also known as kangaroo care) for a successful breastfeeding journey as mothers who involve in direct breastfeeding can produce sufficient milk for their babies. It is also important to note that the family and husband’s support is essential during this period. When the mother is surrounded by a loving and positive atmosphere, her ability to emotionally bond with the child and breastfeed naturally improves.

Health Benefits of Breastfeeding for the Mother:
In addition to emotional satisfaction, breastfeeding has several health benefits for the mother.

  • Exclusive breastfeeding contributes to faster recovery from childbirth. It reduces postpartum bleeding and stimulates the uterus to return to normal size.
  • A woman can lose calories by breastfeeding her baby, thus helping in weight reduction.
  • Breastfeeding decreases the risk of breast cancer by 33% as compared to mothers who have never performed it. One year of nursing or breastfeeding can reduce the risk of breast cancer by 4%. It also reduces the mother’s risk of ovarian cancer, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure. 
  • Other health-related issues, including urinary tract infections, anaemia, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, endometriosis, osteoporosis, and cardiovascular disease are less common among women who choose to breastfeed.
  • Breastfeeding also has an indirect co-relation in delaying a new pregnancy; while breastfeeding, a woman releases hormones that suppress ovulation. 

Also Read: World Breastfeeding Week: What you need to know as a mother for your baby's growth

Breastfeeding supports the wellness of mother and child. It is both environment-friendly and cost-friendly. In the first six months after birth, the mother should exclusively breastfeed and continue to do so (along with other nutrients) until the child turns two.



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