Breastfeeding your baby not only provides them with complete nutrition, it is also an opportunity to connect with your baby in a profound and satisfying way. Skin to skin contact immediately after the birth of your baby, even if you have had a caesarean birth, triggers a hormonal response that is linked with greater breastfeeding success.
Breastfeeding provides many benefits for both you and your baby. It provides your baby with all the nutrition they need for the first six months of their life and continues to provide nutritional and health benefits for the first year of their life and beyond. Breastmilk also helps protect your baby against various infections, allergies and other medical conditions and reduces the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). For you, breastfeeding helps reduce the risk of bleeding after the birth, is linked with a reduced risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer and osteoporosis and is a convenient and free way to feed your baby.
Whilst breastfeeding is a normal and natural practice, it is a learned skill and doesn’t always come naturally for many women and their babies. The first few weeks of your baby’s life are a time for you and your baby to learn and connect. Breast feeding doesn’t always go perfectly at first but there is support and information available to help you through the challenging times.
For more information;
Australian Breastfeeding Association – Breastfeeding Information
ACT Health – Breastfeeding Fact Sheets
Better Health Channel – Breastfeeding – when to start
The Royal Women’s Hospital – Why breastfeed?