There are hundreds of myths surrounding breastfeeding. It is the most natural and important part of newborn life. Today we discuss a few common ones....
MYTH - Baby should feed 5-5 minutes at both breasts in a feeding session.
FACT - Absolutely No, Give one full breast first. Foremilk has water to satisfy his thirst and hindmilk calories for growth. Offer other breast after first or give in next session.
MYTH - Its ok to give bottle only for a day or two till my milk starts coming FACT - Its not ok at all..When baby is fed from bottle its easy to suck for him. But sucking at breast is more work as she has to suck both nipple and areola. Giving a bottle will create nipple confusion. The baby may lose interest in breastfeeding completely and you may have to give bottle everytime. So katori spoon feeding is best for short periods. MYTH - I have seen babies drink very fast from bottle than direct breast feeding and even i will have less discomfort if i express breast milk and give. FACT - Breast milk is a boon for baby. Expressed breast milk can be given in condition where mother has to return to work early. Direct breast feeding leads to mom baby bonding, you get to know each other better, takes care of emotional needs of the baby and feeling of closeness with your baby. Also returning to breastfeeding after giving bottle is very difficult. MYTH - Galthuti is must for baby. FACT - NO Prelacteal feeds- galthuti, janam ghuti, honey, water, milk etc. A healthy baby has a store of calories, even early drops of colostrum are sufficient for a baby. These prelacteal feeds delay breastfeeding and can sometimes cause intestinal infections. Anything except mother's milk should be given only on doctor's advice. MYTH - I have flat nipples so I cannot breastfeed my baby. FACT - Flat nipples are not a problem most of the time. It is the areola dark part around nipple which contains milk. The baby should be able to pull it to form a teat. Touch your nipples and gently try to pull them. If nipples stand erect, they are fit for breastfeeding. MYTH - It is hot summer, its ok to give some water to my newborn. FACT - No, Milk contains 90% water, there is no need to give water seperately. Please attend a breastfeeding class in final months of your pregnancy. Understand and follow all the do's and don't's on breastfeeding. Once your baby is in your hands all this information will help and you don't have to rely on friends and relatives for it. DISCLAIMER - These are the views of a qualified doctor and author. These are general suggestions and do not replace actual check up with doctor. Any resemblance to anybody is coincidental. AUTHOR INFORMATION - Dr Harita Kothia, Obstetrician and Gynecologist, Mumbai.