“Congratulations on welcoming a new little one into your life! As all fathers do, your role in this exciting (and exhausting) time is crucial, particularly when it comes to breastfeeding support. Both your partner and family will need you more than ever as having a baby brings about significant changes for everyone. It’s a period of adjusting to an unfamiliar routine and learning many new things.”
To give just one example, you may not have realized that breast milk is incredibly beneficial to a baby’s health and that giving your child even a small amount can significantly affect how well he or she develops. One of the best things you can do for your baby is to help your partner succeed at breastfeeding, even if you are unable to. Supportive partners encourage breastfeeding, which increases the benefits to the baby.
Advantages to Breastfeeding
Babies benefit from breastfeeding.
Breastfeeding is beneficial in more ways than one. Colostrum, the mother’s first milk, has been dubbed “liquid gold” because it contains antibodies that will aid in keeping your baby healthy. Breastfed infants have a lower risk of developing childhood cancer, ear infections, respiratory infections, and other illnesses. Breastfed babies have a 36% reduced risk of SIDS (SIDS).
Breastfeeding is linked with a decreased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, obesity, and hypertension later in life, and it also protects infants from cancers like leukemia. Those positive effects multiply with each ounce of breastmilk your baby consumes. Children who are breastfed have higher IQs and perform better academically. Breast milk is a potent substance.
To what end does breast milk serve? Breastmilk is something a mother’s body produces, especially for her child. In addition, breast milk evolves over time to meet your baby’s changing nutritional needs. It’s been shown that breastmilk can change from the start to the finish of a single feeding! Breastfed infants are less likely to experience digestive issues like gas, constipation, and colic because the proteins in breastmilk are easier on their developing digestive systems. And that’s good news for everybody.
Breastfeeding has many benefits for mothers.
Breastfeeding has advantages for mothers as well. For starters, there are substantial long-term health benefits: breastfeeding reduces a mother’s risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. In addition to aiding in weight loss (up to 600 calories per day are burned while breastfeeding), breastfeeding also causes contractions that help the uterus shrink back to its pre-pregnancy size, allowing the mother to recover from childbirth more quickly.
Breastfeeding is good for a woman’s mental health as well. Hormones are released during breastfeeding, making the mother feel calm and strengthening the bond between her and her child. Getting up at midnight to prepare warm bottles for nighttime feedings means less sleep for moms.
If you breastfeed, you can save money in the long run. It can save you $75 to $200 on the cost of formula if you breastfeed for a month. That’s a savings of between $900 and $2,400 per year.
Tips for Being a Good Partner
Supplying help for mothers who are breastfeeding.
Even though breastfeeding is a rewarding experience, it also has its challenges. Your partner may need your help to continue breastfeeding. Lots of real-world actions you can take will make a difference.
Get an early start on things.
Even before your baby is born, you can begin receiving help with breastfeeding. Listen in on the mom’s conversation about her breastfeeding experience with the doctor. Investigate the breastfeeding assistance provided by the hospital or birthing center if possible. A lactation consultant is often on hand to help new mothers with issues like positioning and latch.
You can be a vocal proponent of skin-to-skin contact and breastfeeding in the “Sacred Hour” immediately following a baby’s birth. Baby is placed on mom’s chest for skin-to-skin time so that she can cuddle with her newborn and feed him her nutrient-rich colostrum, the first milk she produces. Skin-to-skin contact during the newborn’s first hour has been shown to facilitate a smooth transition into breastfeeding. Skin-to-skin contact should be made available to all newborns, including those born via cesarean section. Bonding through skin-to-skin contact isn’t limited to mothers; fathers and partners can reap its benefits, too. Spend as much time as possible holding your newborn close to your bare chest in the hospital and after you’ve gone home.
When you return home.
Fathers and partners are the unsung heroes of the home because of their tireless efforts to ensure their families’ health and cleanliness.
Be sure to feed the family.
You can take charge of the kitchen and the grocery store while Mom rests. Feed older kids on a consistent schedule. Keep a water bottle and healthy snacks like fruit, cheese, crackers, and peanut butter toast within easy reach for mom.
Be aware of signs of hunger.
To help mom out, keep an eye out for signs of hunger. Babies are easier to latch on before crying, and hunger is a common cause of fussiness (a late hunger cue). Lip smacking, nuzzling, searching for the breast, bringing hands to the mouth, and sucking movements are all signs that your baby is hungry.
Slow down and relax.
Allow mom as much rest and sleep as she needs. As you settle into your new routines, keeping things peaceful and quiet at home is best. Spend some time playing with older kids and helping them with things like baths, bedtime, homework, and school drop-offs. You should take care of the housework and arrange for visitors who want to see the new baby. Feel free to ask if you need someone to come by at a different time.
Stand up for her.
Be sure your partner knows you’ve got her back. Tell everyone you know about the positive effects breastfeeding has on your baby. Send a message of congratulations to your partner on the breast milk she gave to your child. Do what you can to make mom feel at ease with feeding your baby wherever she chooses, even if you’re out in public. Support her emotionally by sitting with her. Though she may experience some initial anxiety, she will soon find that her nerves will subside with repeated exposure. If you’re wondering, yes, a mother has the legal right to breastfeed her child in public in Texas.
Supporting and encouraging them is the most useful thing you can do. Reassure your partner that she is doing an excellent job and that things will improve in time. She will eventually adjust to the change. Tell your partner to take all the time she can to rest and bond with the baby when she’s not working. She can maintain her milk supply with these measures.
Meaningful articles you might like: How to Monitor Your Child’s Meals, Diapers, and Sleep, A Guide To Breastfeeding, Is Covid-19 Safe For Breastfeeding Mothers?