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Five Reasons I Love Breastfeeding

I was always going to breastfeed. I never needed the midwife’s hard sell or the lists or reasons why Breast is Best. For me, I was just going to do it! Now I’ve been breastfeeding for almost 8 years constant. And I have my own reasons why it is so special: 1. The Closeness to Baby Breastfeeding is a very intimate act. After a baby is thrust into this world it is beautiful for mummy and baby to have that closeness, a gentler way to start life. After nine months in the womb the baby is suddenly separate from you, but when he feeds you are one again. Personally I find bottle feeding lacks that closeness, it feels distant. 2. Antibodies! I find it amazing that my antibodies are passed on to my babies, so they receive protection from the viruses I’ve already fought- that’s really cool! Not only that those annoying little eye infection newborns are prone to can be zapped by a well aimed squirt (although aiming a breast milk squirt is a bit hit or miss, and provides great entertainment to older siblings). 3. Convenience Yes, bottle feeders may smugly look on when you have a squawking infant in the post natal ward, but you have food on the go! It makes life a lot less stressful not having to be back in time for that next bottle, or having that flexibility when out and about. 4. Night Feeding I can think of nothing worse than faffing about with bottles in the wee small hours. Sticking a breast in baby’s mouth and everyone getting back to sleep with minimal disruption- much more like it! 5. Immediate Comfort Breastfeeding provides instant comfort. At a mother’s breast is the safest place in the world for a baby. This emotional nourishment is never mentioned in the literature, but for me is the most beautiful part of breastfeeding. Share this:PrintFacebookTwitterEmailLike this:Like...

The Super Dooper Super Food: Breast Milk!

I am a HUGE breast-feeding fan. I have spent the last, nearly, 8 years breastfeeding. In fact, it is fair to say my breasts have acquired their own persona, they are like another member of the family. Little breastfeeding toddlers talk about them as if they are separate to me. They are known as Sookies or Juicies. They have been known to talk (apparently), they are the safest place in the world! As far as I’m concerned, breast milk is the most super of all the super foods! I amazes me that a woman’s body has the ability to produce this continuous supply of milk. Milk that is nutritional perfect for her baby, protects her own body, as well as protecting the baby against infection. We all know the amazing things breast milk can do, we all have the booklets and the pep-talk from our midwives, but here are some cool facts about breast milk, you may not know: 1. Scientists are unable to isolate all the fab things that make up breast milk, so no matter how hard they try formula companies cannot recreate mummy’s own milk. 2. Breast milk changes throughout the day. In the morning milk is more watery, in the evening and night it is thinker, creamier, and more satisfying, so the baby will (should!) feel more full and sleep better. 3. Breast-feeding releases hormones to the mother which help sleep. So although you are wakened in the night you should be able to fall back to sleep more readily. 4. The flavour of breast milk is laced by the food you eat. So even young infants are having their taste buds prepared for weaning. 5. Newborn infants can detect the smell of their mothers milk. A study showed newborns placed between two shirts, one with their mothers milk on it the other with a strangers, tended to turn towards the smell of their mothers milk. 6. You can make ice-cream with breast milk (never tried it by the way!) 7. It boosts IQ! 8. The nipple has 15-20 little holes in it. 9. You can breast feed baby as long as you like and feel comfortable. The World Health Organisation recommends breast feeding continues until baby is two and a half, at least. so nothing weird about feeding a toddler! 10. Breast feeding is a great source of comedy moments formula feeding can never manage- Caitlan Moran’s hilarious article entitled “Breast is Best” will convince you of this! I could not breath, I laughed so much. Share this:PrintFacebookTwitterEmailLike this:Like...

Controlled Crying vs No Crying

When you have a new baby, sleep controls your life in a totally new way. And achieving the holy grail on new motherhood- a sleeping baby- becomes the number one goal of your day. Some babies just sleep! Some do not! For those families who have one of those babies the dilemma is how do you get this child to sleep. Controlled crying is a sleep training method advocated by Gina Ford, and involves letting baby cry herself to sleep. Some parents swear by it. I tried it, and found it did not work for us. This is the problem it simply does not work for every child. Some parents find after many nights of a crying baby, eventually they see results, but the smallest change, e.g. illness, going on holiday, undoes all that hard work. Others find it leads to baby being more fractious in the morning. Some studies have shown that controlled crying leaves the baby stressed (personally it leaves mummy stressed!) I found the No Cry Sleep Solution more helpful- although not 100% successful either. No Cry Sleep Solution If you do have a baby who finds it difficult to sleep here are some tips from the No Cry Sleep Solution, which have helped with us, and some I have found have helped with my own children: Establish a routine. Babies thrive on routine. This does not mean baby controls every aspect of family life. Babies will find their own routine that fits around family life. Once nap times are established try and keep them. Babies who have good naps through the day sleep better at night. When a baby is overtired they are more unsettled at night. Establish a night time routine. Have a bedtime ritual for the baby: bath/massage/feed/story etc- whatever that means to you and the baby. Try and keep the evenings quiet and relaxing (not easy with older siblings!) Try playing gentle lullaby music in the bedroom. Keep the music the same each night. Put a toy or blanket in with the baby which has your smell on it. Swaddling: ask a midwife how to swaddle a baby properly. I use a cot sheet to swaddle with, so baby doesn’t get too hot. There are also wonderful swaddling blankets available for infants. Be aware of young babies suffering colic, or older babies teething. Be patient. Some babies just take longer. So many aspects of parenting are divisive, and sleep solutions are no different. It’s about finding the right answer for you and your baby. Share this:PrintFacebookTwitterEmailLike this:Like...
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