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Pros and Cons of Breastfeeding

Updated on December 25, 2012
Breastfeeding is truly an amazing bond between mother and baby.
Breastfeeding is truly an amazing bond between mother and baby. | Source

Things to Consider About Breatfeeding

Thankfully, breastfeeding is starting to get the positive attention that it deserves. However, breastfeeding isn't always roses and sunshine. New moms should know that there are both pros and cons to breastfeeding. However, this balanced understanding shouldn't be a deterrent. Rather, it should help moms go into breastfeeding with their eyes open, knowing that struggles are normal, but the outcomes are worth it.

Breastfeeding Pros and Cons

You are a superhero - you are physically making THE perfect food for your growing baby. It's kind of amazing when you think about it.
No sharing of the night time feedings with dad. In fact, no sharing any of the feedings unless you are pumping. But even then, you still have to do the pumping.
Nothing compares to the bond between a mother and her nursing baby.
If you have to pump, buying a pump can be expensive.
It's the ultimate convenience food - its always the right temperature and it's always ready.
It can hurt, it can really hurt, especially in the first few weeks.
Breast milk has all the nutrition a baby needs at each stage of development.
It can be stressful on new moms. Seek out a support group or talk to other nursing moms if you are feeling stressed from nursing. Take it one nursing session at a time if you need to, just know that it does get better.
No bottles are necessary.
Nursing in public can seem intimidating.
With breast feeding, there is no expensive formula to buy.
Breast milk will never be recalled.
Breast feeding helps keep mother and baby healthy.
You can eat more and still lose the baby weight. A breastfeeding mom needs about 500 extra calories a day.
No formula stains on the baby clothes.
Nursing may ay delay your menstrual cycle.
It's free (if you aren't pumping).
Breast milk is easily digestible for baby.
It may decrease the baby's risk of obesity in the future.
It can help prevent SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome).

It's Ultimately Your Choice

Deciding whether to breastfeed is a very personal decision, that ultimately only a mother can make. If you are considering breastfeeding, I hope that you decide it is right for you. While there are some cons, they are easily outweighed by the benefits.

I'll admit after about a month of nursing I was almost ready to throw in the burp cloth, I mean the towel. But, I told kept telling myself to just make it through one more feeding. I was literally taking it one nursing session at a time for about 3 days. All of the sudden, it's like I turned a corner and a rock was lifted off my shoulders. From that day on, it just kept getting easier. In fact, it got so easy, I nursed for 17 months with my first child and almost 2 years with my second child. You just have to push through those first few weeks. I promise it does get easier. Once we go over that hump, I couldn't imagine not breastfeeding. I hope you feel the same way - I hope that it becomes second nature and bring you and your child months, if not years, of comfort.


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