Week 33 – Breast Feeding
Hello. This is Dr. Mauldin. Congratulations! You’re now 33 weeks pregnant. Let’s talk about breastfeeding.
One of the most special times in your life as a mother will be when you are breastfeeding your baby. It will create a very special bond between you and your baby.
Without a doubt, when it comes to nutrition, the best first food for the baby is your breast milk. It’s easily digestible – and with more than 100 ingredients not found in formula, breast milk is perfectly suited to nourish your newborn. It includes antibodies to various diseases and protects babies from acute and chronic disease…for instance, breastfed babies will have less diarrhea, fewer respiratory infections and fewer ear infections. Breast milk also contains just the right amount of fatty acids and amino acids for brain development and early growth. There is growing evidence to suggest that by breastfeeding, you may be able to decrease your child’s likelihood of heart disease, diabetes and obesity, problems that are plaguing our nation today. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies be breast-fed for 6-12 months.
Breastfeeding isn’t just good for your baby. It’ll be good for you too. In the short-term, a breastfeeding mother will likely have less bleeding in the weeks following birth; and, she will likely reach her pre-pregnancy weight earlier in the months following. There are long term benefits of breast feeding as well – to both the mother and the baby. The mother will have a decreased risk of some breast cancers and ovarian cancers and she may also have a decreased risk of osteoporosis and the resulting hip fractures that claim the lives of many of our mothers and grandmothers.
Although breastfeeding is a natural process, it may take some practice and patience to master. Be sure to ask a lot of questions while you are trying to get started at the hospital.
Get some rest. I’ll talk to you next week.