Why Bother with Breastfeeding?
For the Baby:
- Breast milk is the best food for the baby. It has everything a baby needs to grow and
develop. It is easy to digest. Breast milk changes to meet the needs of the baby and is
perfect for healthy, premature or sick newborns.
- Breastfeeding helps protect baby from getting sick. Breastfed babies have fewer ear
infections and stomach problems like diarrhea and vomiting. That can mean fewer trips
to the clinic or hospital.
- Breastfeeding may help decrease or delay the onset of allergies.
- Breastfeeding helps in the correct growth of baby’s face, mouth and teeth. This can
mean fewer dental bills.
- Breastfeeding provides better brain development. This may lead to a smarter child.
- Breastfeeding gives skin-to-skin contact and is comforting to the baby.
For the Mother:
- Breastfeeding helps the mother feel close and bonded with her baby. By spending time
together, the mother learns about her baby’s likes and dislikes and gains confidence in
meeting baby’s needs.
- Breastfeeding helps the mother feel more relaxed and peaceful.
- Breastfeeding burns calories. Weight loss after pregnancy may be easier for the
- Breastfeeding saves time, since there are no bottles to clean, prepare, warm or
sterilize. Breastmilk is always ready and the correct temperature.
- Breastfeeding saves money.
- Working mothers who breastfeed miss less work because of a sick baby.
- Breastfeeding makes travel easier, since there is less stuff to haul around.
- During natural disasters such as tornadoes and floods, breastmilk is available and safe.
- Breastfeeding may reduce the risk of breast and uterine cancer.
- Breastfeeding gives the mother something that only she can do for her baby. It is a
special connection that the baby’s grandmother or babysitter can’t have.
- Breastfeeding can be a source of pride, a sign of maturity and responsibility in caring
for a baby.
For the Father and other Family Members:
- Breastfeeding can save money. Formula and bottle-feeding equipment costs can be
- There is less time off work to take care of a sick baby or to take the baby to the doctor,
and less money spent on medications.
- Breastmilk does not stain clothing.
- Breastfed babies smell good. Their bowel movements are less smelly than those of a
formula fed infant.
- Breastfeeding saves time: there are fewer bottles to wash and sterilize