Bottle Feeding - The Benefits for Mom and Baby
Deciding whether or not to bottle feed your baby is not a decision that is made lightly. Society and the media don't make the decision any easier as they make bottle feeding appear to be a bad choice compared to breastfeeding. Many mothers that make the decision not to breast feed or cannot breast feed for some reason, do not need to feel guilty about choosing to bottle feed.
While nothing can replace the whole, natural benefits of mother's milk, using baby formula also has several benefits for mother and baby. Baby formulas of today are created to be as close to mother's milk as possible. These baby formulas are just as nutritious and many are fortified with iron, a key ingredient in helping to prevent anemia in infants. Another great benefit is portion control. With bottle feeding, you know exactly how much you are feeding your baby. You won't be left wondering if your child has eaten enough or has been overfed.
Unfortunately, mother's who breastfeed still have to deal with the stares and sometimes comments they may receive when they decide to breastfeed in public. With bottle feeding you eliminate the frustration of dealing with ignorance. You no longer have to stay indoors to avoid the embarrassment of wanting to feed your child in public. Many mothers may also worry about losing the bonding that can come with breast feeding. Bottle feeding can still bring the same type of mother and child bonding that breast feeding does. You are still close to your child and able to talk and spend quality time during a feeding. Don't let the worry of bonding play in your decision to bottle feed.
Another plus to bottle feeding is that moms can get back to living a normal life a lot sooner. Breastfeeding alters a mother's daily life due to certain factors that must be considered, primarily in the case of medication. Mother's who are prescribed medication must remember to check with their doctor before taking them. Medication can be passed through to baby during breastfeeding. Bottle feeding clears the way for things like medication as well as oral contraceptives. Having the choice to take an oral contraceptive is a concern for many mothers who do not desire to have another child right away.
Bottle feeding is also much more convenient. Baby formula can be stored easily and makes traveling a lot easier as well. Ready-made baby formula requires no mixing. You can feed your baby its contents right away which is a time saver. Bottle feeding also allows others to help you out. You can have others feed your baby when you are busy or because they want to share in the experience such as dad helping out during a feeding or grandparents. This can be a huge help when you are burned out from the day's activities and need to catch a nap or are not feeling well.
Mother's who choose to bottle feed should never feel like they are making a poor choice. Just like breastfeeding, bottle feeding holds many benefits.
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