Pros and Cons to Breast Feeding
When you meet a mother who is breastfeeding or bottle feeding; each usually has passionate reasons for their decision. Deciding how to nourish your children will impact them for the rest of their lives. Although both breastfeeding and bottle feeding have their pros and cons, it should be an intimate decision you make with your partner about what is best for your baby and your family.
In order to help you gather the information needed to make your final decision, this article will point out the pros and cons of breastfeeding.
First let’s start with what most parents worry about, the nutritional aspect of feeding their child. When it comes to the pros and cons of breastfeeding, nutrition is definitely on the pros list.
-No breast milk is wasted and babies don’t overeat because they determine the amount they want and can just stop. No need for spilling any left overs down the sink; breast milk does not go bad inside the breast.
-Breast milk naturally contains all the nutrients your baby needs in order to reach maximum levels of development. The breast milk also contains anti-bodies which helps prevent your baby from becoming ill.
-Since breast milk is all natural, it is easily digested. There are also less chances of your baby having any allergic reactions. Plus you don’t have to worry about food tampering issues.
-No matter what development stage your baby is in, mother’s body will know and actually automatically ‘updates’ its nutritional contents to suit your baby’s needs.
-Mother’s tend to stay in better health because they are still focused on eating properly since their baby acquires their nutrition from what mom eats. Mothers also burn hundreds of calories a day breastfeeding which helps lose the ‘pregnancy weight’, ultimately aiding the prevention of obesity.
Another advantage to breast milk is that it is always free! Buying formula, even from discount stores, can cost hundreds of dollars a month (not to mention all the bottles and plastic nipples needed). The breast pump which can aid breast feeding is a one-time buy, and the nursing pads which can be bought at most common retailers and pharmacies, usually range around $10 for a box of 60 pads.
Another aid some mothers buy for breastfeeding is a nursing bra. This type of bra allows for one bra cup at a time to open for convenient breast feeding. Again this can be bought at most common retailers for around $20, depending on the brand.
When comparing cost, the first month of breast feeding is more expensive but then the cost dips dramatically to be an overall savings of hundreds of dollars a month over bottle feeding.
Now let’s talk about preparation. Breast milk does not need any prep time, just unclip your nursing bra and it’s ready to go, plus it’s always the right temperate. No need to worry about it being too hot, or testing it on your wrist or elbow like is needed with bottle feeding.
The con of preparation when it comes to breast feeding is that you are the only one who can feed the baby. So if you wanted to go out to dinner, or if you have an outside the home job, you would have to pump enough breast milk to last until you get back. With bottle feeding, anyone can prepare the formula and feed the baby, which helps counter the stress that comes with a feeding schedule.
Another con of breast feeding is that the mother cannot be on certain medications. As we discussed before, everything mom eats, so does baby. All medications, even pain killers, must be discussed and approved with your doctor before allowing baby to breast feed.
The last con of breast feeding is the most popular con; the pain! Even though breast/nipple pain usually only lasts a couple weeks, the transition can be very difficult for some women.
With all the pros and cons of breast feeding, I’m sure you and your family have a lot to discuss about your baby’s nutritional needs and how you plan to address them. Either way, it’s always a good idea to discuss your plans with your doctor and let them know of your decision. Letting your doctor know of your plans will not only help to confirm you made the right decision, but your doctor can also give you tips and suggestions for feeding your baby whether it be bottle feeding or breastfeeding.