This includes mum and baby’s health during and post pregnancy.
Breastfeeding is best, as it has been shown to have long-term health benefits that your baby can take into adulthood. For the first 6 months of life, breast milk is a complete source of nutrition for optimal growth and development. Following this, introducing suitable solids at around 6 months of age and continuing to breastfeed until at least 12 months of age is advised.
Breastfeeding can then continue on for as long as mother and child desire. Breast milk is innately tailored to meet your baby’s nutrition needs.
As infants develop and grow rapidly during their first year of life, the composition of breast milk naturally changes alongside their shifting nutrition needs.
- Provides protection of your baby’s immune system, meaning a reduced risk of developing allergies, asthma, infections and disease
- Is continually available at the right temperature when needed
- Is always clean and safe with no preparation, sterilisation or storage required
- Easy to digest
Breastfeeding is also a great way for mother and baby to bond, and has many maternal benefits including:
- Time to sit and relax with your baby
- Skin-to-skin contact, which can be comforting for both mother and baby
- Assisting with getting back to pre-pregnancy weight
You should always seek professional advice from your doctor or healthcare professional when deciding on the most appropriate approach to feeding your baby.
Using bottle-feeding exclusively or in combination with breastfeeding may affect your breast milk supply. Keep in mind these effects may be difficult to reverse. Use of infant formula when not indicated may have health implications for your baby.
Always ensure infant formula preparation, usage and storage is in accordance to the manufacturer’s directions on the can.