WHY breastfeed?

It is well known that breastfeeding is beneficial to mothers and babies. Here you can find out the facts about breastfeeding and see WHY breastfeeding is the way babies are built to feed. You will see the importance of breastfeeding in the development of a baby and our future generations from the start of their lives.

Benefits to your baby

Breastfeeding reduces the risk of:

  • Ear infections - acute otitis media.

  • Stomach bugs - non-specific gastroenteritis.

  • Lung infections - severe lower respiratory tract infection.

  • Eczema - atopic dermatitis.

  • Asthma (young children).

  • Obesity.

  • Diabetes - types 1 & 2.

  • Childhood cancers - leukaemia.

  • Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)

  • Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC).

For more information visit https://www.unicef.org.uk/babyfriendly/news-and-research/baby-friendly-research/

Benefits to you

Breastfeeding reduces the risk of

  • Type 2 diabetes.

  • Breast cancer - your protection against risk increases for every month you breastfeed.

  • Ovarian cancer - your protection against risk increases for every month you breastfeed.

  • Osteoporosis - bone density increases after breastfeeding ceases and is greater the longer you breastfeed.

  • Early cessation of breastfeeding or not breastfeeding is associated with an increased risk of maternal postpartum depression (PND).

 

For more information visit https://www.unicef.org.uk/babyfriendly/news-and-research/baby-friendly-research/

If more babies were breastfed there would be great cost savings to the NHS:

  • 3,285 fewer babies hospitalised with gastroenteritis and 10,637 fewer GP consultations, saving more than £3.6 million.

  • 5,916 fewer babies hospitalised with respiratory illness and 22,248 fewer GP consultations saving around £6.7 million.

  • 21,045 fewer ear infection GP visits saving £75,000.

  • 361 fewer cases of the potentially fatal necrotising enterocolitis, saving £6 million

  • 30% of hospital admissions reduced for every month of breastfeeding.

  • Save £1 million by reducing the number of cases of breast cancer.

 

https://www.unicef.org.uk/babyfriendly/news-and-research/baby-friendly-research/

If a new vaccine became available that could prevent 1 million child deaths and that was cheap,

safe, administered orally and requires no cold chain,

it would become an immediate public health imperative (Lancet 1994).

Breastfeeding could do this and more

Benefits to society