Everyone loves to eat, especially babies and once they are hungry, they must be fed. No matter when, and where they are. Breastfeeding is the normal way of providing young infants with the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development. Breastfeeding is for a woman to feed her own child with milk produced by the breasts. Human breast milk is produced by a woman’s body and is used to feed a baby. It is produced by the mammary glands contained in a woman’s breasts. Babies have a sucking and swallowing reflex allowing them to suck and swallow milk. In modern medicine, breast milk is the healthiest form of baby milk. Breastfeeding has benefits for both the mother and the baby because it helps prevent disease. Breastfeeding has been reported to impact mood and stress reactivity in mothers. Breast milk keeps babies healthy. Children who are breastfed for longer periods have lower infectious morbidity and mortality, fewer dental malocclusions, and higher intelligence than do those who are breastfed for shorter periods, or not breastfed. Reduces the risk of viruses, urinary tract infections, inflammatory bowel disease, gastroenteritis, ear infections, and respiratory infections. However, there are risks of not breastfeeding. For example, it increases the chance of an infant dying from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Among premature infants, not receiving breast milk is associated with an increased risk of necrotizing enterocolitis. For mothers, failure to breastfeed is associated with an increased incidence of premenopausal breast cancer, ovarian cancer, retained gestational weight gain, type 2 diabetes, and the metabolic syndrome.
Some people will argue that women should never breastfeed in public because it is a sexual act or even say ignorant things such as, “Go feed your baby in the bathroom or a nursing room, far away from where people can see you.” However, people who feel this way are mistaken. Breastfeeding has become so controversial these days. Should women be allowed to breastfeed their baby, when and wherever they want? Yes, Public breastfeeding should be welcomed and Encouraged.
The health benefits of breastfeeding for infants include fewer rates of respiratory tract infections, gastrointestinal tract infections, necrotizing enter colitis, allergic diseases, celiac disease, and inflammatory bowel disease; as well as SIDS, obesity, diabetes, and leukemia. Infants who are breastfed for at least one month, despite differing home environments and SES, also experience cognitive benefits (Stewart and Dunne, 2010). Further, breastfeeding may act as a buffer for a negative relationship between the mother and infant. Also, creates a bond between the mother and the baby. Children who are breastfed for longer periods have lower infectious morbidity and mortality, fewer dental malocclusions, and higher intelligence than do those who are breastfed for shorter periods, or not breastfed. This inequality persists until later in life. Growing evidence also suggests that breastfeeding might protect against overweight and diabetes later in life. In addition to these benefits for infants, breastfeeding can lead to a reduced risk of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and type 2 diabetes in mothers (Godfrey & Meyers, 2009), as well as, positively affect a mother’s emotional well-being. By supporting breastfeeding as the normative way to feed an infant, the obstetrician-gynecologist can play a powerful role in improving health outcomes across 2 generations. To add on to the benefits, Long-term breastfeeding is often associated with better mental health during childhood and adolescence. Misuse of breastfeeding can, in the extreme, cause deaths from diarrhea in babies in both developed and developing countries. Human breast milk can feed babies up to three years of age and up. The colostrum of the first days, then the mature milk responds naturally (easy digestion, optimal energy supply) to the exclusive diet of the first six months of life of the human newborn, long-term and healthy. Breastfeeding and the combination of breast milk meet the nutritional, immunological and emotional needs associated with optimal growth of infant mutations. Breastfeeding supports the child’s neurological development and immune defenses and provides additional defense against gastrointestinal infections. Breast milk contain Water, Glucides, Lipides, protides, Protein Enzymes, Acides amines, Hormones. The average lipid content in breast milk is around 40 grams per liter. This content can vary significantly (from 3 to 180 grams per liter) depending on the time of day, the child’s age, the volume of the feed, the mother’s constitution and her type of diet. Lipid synthesis is complex and time-consuming, which is why lipids are only concentrated in human milk at the end of each breast feeding. This moment should not be suppressed by short feedings. Lipids in human milk are 98% made up of triglycerides, fats which play a role in the myelination of the nervous system, vision acuity and hormone synthesis6. Human milk also contains phospholipids, cholesterol, beneficial to the cardiovascular and cerebral level. Essential fatty acids (linoleic, linolenic) must be provided to the mother through her diet. Research into the potential impact of breastfeeding on brain development complements and extends work on cognitive development by using methodologies such as electroencephalography (EEG) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). One such study measured EEG spectral power longitudinally over the course of the first year of life in a group of typically developing infants and compared between breastfed and formula-fed infants.
Breastfeeding has been reported to impact mood and stress reactivity in mothers. Specifically, breastfeeding mothers report reductions in anxiety, negative mood, and stress when compared to formula-feeding mothers. These findings based on subjective self-report measures are supported by objective physiological measures indicative of a positive effect of breastfeeding on emotional well-being. For example, breastfeeding mothers have stronger cardiac vagal tone modulation, reduced blood pressure, and reduced heart rate reactivity than formula-feeding mothers have, indexing a calm and non-anxious physiological state. Moreover, there is evidence to show that breastfeeding mothers have a reduced cortisol response when faced with social stress.
Risks/ Consequences of NOT breastfeeding
There are significant risks to an infant’s health when human milk is not provided. Breast milk has agents (called antibodies) in it to help protect infants from bacteria and viruses. Recent studies show that babies who are not exclusively breastfed for 6 months are more likely to develop a wide range of infectious diseases including ear infections, diarrhea, respiratory illnesses and have more hospitalizations. Also, infants who are not breastfed have a 21% higher postneonatal infant mortality rate in the U.S.
Some studies suggest that infants who are not breastfed have higher rates of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) in the first year of life, and higher rates of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, lymphoma, leukemia, Hodgkin’s disease, overweight and obesity, high cholesterol and asthma. More research in these areas is needed (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2005). Babies who are not breastfed are sick more often and have more doctor’s visits. For infants, not being breastfed is associated with an increased incidence of infectious morbidity, including otitis media, gastroenteritis, and pneumonia, as well as elevated risks of childhood obesity, type 1 and type 2 diabetes, leukemia, and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)——– Among premature infants, not receiving breast milk is associated with an increased risk of necrotizing enterocolitis. For mothers, failure to breastfeed is associated with an increased incidence of premenopausal breast cancer, ovarian cancer, retained gestational weight gain, type 2 diabetes, and the metabolic syndrome. Not breastfeeding increases the chance of an infant dying from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). In a 2009 German study, exclusive breastfeeding at one month of age halved the risk of SIDS, and partial breastfeeding at one month of age also reduced the risk.23 Being exclusively breastfed in the last month of life further reduced the risk of SIDS, as did being partially breastfed. Not breastfeeding is also associated with increases in short- and long-term blood pressure. Blood pressure fell significantly by 8.8- and 7.7-mm Hg (systolic and diastolic blood pressure, respectively) with breastfeeding 2 days after birth and at 1, 10, and 25 weeks, falling within the first 10 minutes and continuing for at least 60 minutes. Basal blood pressure decreased through 6 months of breastfeeding. Exclusive breastfeeding is the normative standard for infant feeding. Not breastfeeding increases infant and maternal acute and chronic illnesses, and significantly increases health-care costs. There are many evidences to support the value of human milk and breastfeeding in improving the health of infants and mothers. While breastfeeding initiation rates continue to rise, there is much work to do to improve breastfeeding exclusivity and duration.
Grant A. “I…don’t want to see you flashing your bits around”: exhibitionism, othering and good motherhood in perceptions of public breastfeeding. Geoforum. 2016; 71:52–61. Some people will argue that women should never breastfeed in public because it is a sexual act. However, people who feel this way are mistaken. As Singer-Songwriter Alanis Morrissette said, “I see my body as an instrument rather than an ornament.” Her body is an “instrument” to feed and nourish her baby. When someone asks a woman to cover-up during breastfeeding or move to someplace more private, it is often because this person is sexualizing the act of breastfeeding rather than viewing it as a natural, nurturing act. However, society does not see something wrong with a woman in bikini showing most of their bodies but sees it wrong or “disgusting” when a mother breastfeeds. What people do not realize is that many infants cannot eat while covered up and a nursing mother should not be made to feel embarrassed for feeding her child. “My opinion is that anybody offended by breastfeeding is staring too hard.” » David Allen. If you get dirty looks from onlookers, smile back at them! You are doing what is best for your baby. Be confident!
Many have also said that mother should go to the bathroom or a nursing room, far away from where people can see you. However, the mother has the right to feed her baby where and when she wants. The bathrooms are not sterilized and comfortable place to eat. You and I don’t eat our food in the bathroom, so why should a baby eat there? When A person is hungry, he or she looks for food and is very eager to find food. Babies especially cannot hold their hunger and the mother has no choice. The mother must instantly feed her urging baby no matter where she is, and it is not acceptable to tell her to “feed your child somewhere else.
Overall, we know that there are many health benefits to baby and mother from breastfeeding. Breast feeding also offers health benefits to the mothers and have a reduced risk of breast and ovarian cancer. Moreover, helps fight of things like ear infections, bacteria, and pneumonia. Breast feeding in public should be welcomed and supported. Although public breast feeding has led to backlash, it was the only way to feed children before the development of milk formula. Most people view public breastfeeding positively; however, there is still a perception that breastfeeding women may feel uncomfortable breastfeeding in public. And there are others who don’t like seeing a woman breastfeed. Woman are asked to leave the room or to stop breastfeeding by who do not feel comfortable around them. People should not feel uncomfortable when they see a woman breastfeeding. This is normal and does not need to be hidden. Breasts are viewed as sexual items rather than a natural way of providing nutrients and comfort for a child. Statistics indicate that breastfeeding has the potential to save approximately 1.4 million mortalities among babies. Public breastfeeding is not against the law. We know that a controversy remains as to whether breastfeeding should occur in public at all. Although, breastfeeding is necessary for human survival, mothers who do not feel comfortable can use ways to make her feel more comfortable. Let us strive together to make breastfeeding in public unremarkable because Mothers should never be pushed away because they are breast feeding, a baby has the right to be fed and taken care of.
Work Cited Page
- J. Bruce German et Cora J. Dillard, « Saturated Fats: A Perspective from Lactation and Milk Composition », Lipids, vol. 45, no 10, octobre 2010, p. 915–923 (ISSN 0024-4201,PMID 20652757, PMCID PMC2950926, DOI 10.1007/s11745-010-3445-9, lire en ligne [archive], consulté le 20 octobre 2017)
- RA Lawrence et RM Lawrence (2005) Breastfeeding, A Guide for the medical profession6e édition. Philadelphie, Elsevier Mosby.
- World Health Organization, « The physiological basis of breastfeeding », NCIB, 2009(lire en ligne [archive])
- Bates CJ, Prentice A. Breast milk as a source of vitamins, essential minerals and trace elements. Pharmacol Therapeut 1994; 62:193-220.
- Bates, Christopher and Andrew M Prentice. “Breast milk as a source of vitamins, essential minerals and trace elements.” Pharmacology & therapeutics 62 1-2 (1994): 193-220.
- National Academy of Sciences. Nutrition during lactation. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1991.