Published: Tue, August 07, 2018
Medicine | By Tracy Klein

Mothers are encouraged to breastfeed regardless of HIV Status

Mothers are encouraged to breastfeed regardless of HIV Status

Southwest Florida and Lee County Breast Coalition are taking steps to provide more support to mothers who struggle with breastfeeding.

Now that mothers can nurse their babies in public in all 50 states, maybe more moms will be encouraged to breastfeed their children up until six months, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. The HMOs are the third most abundant solid component in human milk after lactose and fat.

Breastfeeding is beneficial for mothers as well since it helps them to lose weight faster.

The benefits of breastfeeding for the mother include protection against breast and ovarian cancers, hip fracture later in life and postmenopausal cardiovascular disease (the longer mothers breastfeed, the greater their protection against breast and ovarian cancer, and hip fractures). Breastfeeding also reduces ill health in children, improves their educational potential and probably their earnings as adults. Breastfeeding prevents malnutrition and has also irreplaceable role to decrease child mortality, Dr. Belaynesh said.

Pakistan was among the 118 countries which had voted in favour of adopting global code of marketing of breast milk substitutes during the World Health Assembly in May 1981. Mothers who give birth at Baby-Friendly™ hospitals and birthing centers are more likely to initiate exclusive breastfeeding and are more likely to sustain breastfeeding at six months and one year of age. Skin-to-skin contact along with suckling at the breast stimulate the mother's production of breastmilk, including colostrum, also called the baby's "first vaccine", which is extremely rich in nutrients and antibodies.

Promoting, supporting and protecting breastfeeding is one way we can help give our children a strong foundation for optimal development. Breastfeeding lowers the baby's risk to allergies such as asthma.

The metro's women and men's health manager Thembane Masina has encouraged exclusive breastfeeding by both HIV negative or positive mothers. 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. This is to enable the mother breastfeed the baby on demand whenever the baby wants to breastfeed. Deliveries at health institutions grew by 18 percentage points, while early initiation rates increased by 6 percentage points, show data from 58 countries between 2005 and 2017. In fact, breastfeeding rates within the first hour after birth are highest in eastern and southern Africa (65%) and lowest in east Asia and the Pacific (32%), the report said. Sustained breastfeeding support, education, and consistent, accurate information will help to meet these goals. And these two are the leading causes of death in children under five years of age.

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