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August is Breastfeeding Awareness Month

August is Breastfeeding Awareness Month

Breastfeeding advocates around the world were appalled recently when the USA refused to pass a run-of-the-mill World Health Organization resolution that encourages countries to "protect, promote and support" breastfeeding, instead electing to favour the interests of infant formula companies. "A mother might face problems like, pain while feeding, change in the nipple colour, cracked, sore nipple, Mastitis, Vasospasm, Plug Ducts, tongue or lip tie or cleft palates are some of the significant problems faced by mothers while feeding", Varsha Satyan, counsellor, Lactation Consultant, Member of Medela India LC Club says.

Breast milk contains the entire nutrient that an infant needs for the first six months of life.

When babies consume breast milk, they are less likely to develop respiratory illnesses, diabetes, and other diseases.

Infants who have not been breastfed, face 15 times more chances of dying from pneumonia and 11 times more likely to die from diarrhoea than children who are exclusively breastfed.

Exclusive breastfeeding by definition is giving the baby only breast milk from birth until 6 months of age.

In celebration and recognition of National Breastfeeding Month and World Breastfeeding Week, Opelousas General Health System is offering a free Community Baby Shower for all new & expectant parents and grandparents, as well as business owners, church and community organization leaders on Thursday, August 9th from 3:00 - 7:00 p.m.in the 3rd floor OGHS Auditorium.

Last Wednesday, the Ministry launched the 2018 World Breastfeeding Week, with the theme: "Breastfeeding: Foundation of Life", aimed at linking nutrition security with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Second Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP-II).

Laura Kiige, a nutritionist at the United Nation Children's Fund added that Unicef was working with the Ministry of Health to ensure that workplaces and other public spaces become breastfeeding-friendly. Exclusive breastfeeding also helps to bring about bonding of baby and mother and helps delay a new pregnancy. The findings from WHO and partners estimate that global economic losses from lower cognition associated with not breastfeeding reached more than US$ 300 billion in 2012, equivalent to 0.49 per cent of the world's gross national income. Many women also fear that breastfeeding wilts their breasts, while research has proved otherwise, thereby busting the myth that breastfeeding leads to drooping of breasts. This is especially important as most establishments in Nigeria do not make any provisions for crèches where breastfeeding mothers can bring their babies so that the babies are close enough for the mothers to take breastfeeding breaks and breastfeed their infants.

Are you feeding breast milk to your infant? The city's Maternal, Child, Women and Man's health manager, Thembane Masina, has encouraged exclusive breastfeeding by both HIV negative or positive mothers. During the same period, the rates of early initiation of breastfeeding decreased from 40 per cent to 27 per cent. In Egypt, only 19 per cent of babies born by C-section were breastfed in the first hour after birth, compared to 39 per cent of babies born by natural delivery.

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