The human breast is an amazing organ, especially adapted to feed the human infant.
The mammary glands make and secrete milk, these glands drain into a collection of lactiferous ducts, which carry milk to the nipple, where each ducts has its opening. The darker area of skin that surrounds the nipple is called the areola and helps the newborn baby to see and find her mother’s nipple. Soon after, a baby is born, she will instinctively search for her mother’s nipple. This is called the rooting reflex, and it’s one of the many special talents babies are born with.
Many new mothers need help getting their baby to latch properly, or take enough breast into the mouth so that breastfeeding is comfortable.
Breastfeeding was a skill that had to learn and also a skill that a new baby has to learn because there are some days that you like. For most women breastfeeding gets easier after a few weeks of practice. When the baby begins to suckle or feet at the breast, ascending sensory information travels to the mother’s brain, causing the release of two hormones.
Prolactin stimulates milk production and oxytocin stimulates the contraction of the lobules that hold the milk inside the breast. This is called the letdown reflex.
Even the sound of the baby crying can initiate the letdown reflex. In this way, breast milk is produced in response to the increasing demands of the baby’s growth, communicated to the mother’s body by her baby suckling.
For this reason, most child health organizations around the world, recommend early frequent feedings with mother and baby kept close together in the early newborn period to promote easy access to the breast.
Early introduction of formula can interfere with the supply and demand components of establishing a good milk supply.
In some countries, newborns are given other liquids or solids like water, sugar water or even traditional medicines, even before they begin breastfeeding. This practice called prelactyl feeding is especially dangerous not only because it can interfere with the initiation of breastfeeding, but it can lead to gastrointestinal infections diarrheal disease, dehydration, and death.
Exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months is the gold standard of infant feeding for healthy mothers and healthy infants around the world. Breastfeeding was the first choice for feeding my baby.