How long is breastfeeding? This question concerns many mothers and spreads a great deal of uncertainty. The World Health Organization advises all mothers to breastfeed their baby for six months and then slowly feed them.
How long does the average breastfeeding take?
Prehistoric-era bones, biblical interpretations, and historical records show that breastfeeding in our latitudes used to be significantly longer than today. Researchers assume that at that time the children only for about two to three years were weaned from the mother’s breast. Breastfeeding of toddlers was by no means the exception until well into modern times. From evolutionary behavioral research, long-term breastfeeding is not a malicious behavior, but a typical human standard. But the question of “How long to breastfeed” is still not completely answered. Which factors speak for or against breastfeeding?
The mother’s breast as an optimal food source for babies and toddlers
Speaking of breastfeeding the nutritious breast milk, which adapts not only regarding the amount available but also in their composition optimally to the needs of the child. Breastfed children receive all important vitamins and are well protected from pathogens. In Germany, the average breastfeeding takes just under seven months. About 21 percent of women still breastfeed their nine-month-old baby. BothOne-year-old infants only receive eight to nine percent of breast milk. Fully breastfed, that is, without any complementary food, German children are about until their fifth month of life. Breastfeeding mother surveys revealed that very few people had planned to breastfeed their child for more than 12 months from the beginning.
What speaks for the long-term breastfeeding?
- For many women, it just feels good and right. They enjoy the nursing process itself and the physical proximity to their child. Even after the introduction of Beikost, they do not want to give it up.
- It has been proven that children who are breastfed for longer breastfeed are less likely to be overweight in their later lives.
- Breast milk protects the child from pathogens beyond the sixth month of life.
- The risk of getting an allergy is significantly lower in children who have been breastfed for longer than in non-breastfed children.
- Long-term breastfeeding prevents dentition anomalies.
Incidentally, despite the potentially damaging effects on jaw and teeth development, most people find it normal to have two- or three-year-olds running around with their pacifiers in their mouths.For healthy children keep their sucking instincts until the fifth, and sometimes even up to the age of seven.
How long is breastfeeding? – the decision to abstain
It has been proven that, in Western countries, women’s working conditions have made a major contribution to changing the societal perspective on the natural diet of babies. Logically, it is much more difficult to nurse a child in the factory than in a field in the highlands of Nepal. As a result of these influences, the inner evaluation of breastfeeding by the mothers themselves has changed in the industrialized countries. Even though no one denies the benefit of breast milk, many people are irritated when a two-year-old pushes up his mother’s sweater and begins to drink, In response to the question of how long to breastfeed, one of the following reasons for weaning is often used.
Women often give the following reasons for weaning:
- Serious illness and medication.
- Breastfeeding problems that can not be solved by pumping, homeopathic remedies or breastfeeding counseling.
- The child does not want the breast anymore.
- The occupational situation no longer allows longer breastfeeding.
- Breastfeeding, pumping out and feeding are altogether too expensive.
- The man reacts jealously.
- Appetite for certain foods and alcohol.
- Yearning for independence. The desire to go out again or sleep through the night.
- Renewed pregnancy.
Attention! A woman who decides to stop breastfeeding should not have to justify herself!
© YulyaShilova – istockphoto.com
TIPS FROM MIDWIFE INA ELMER
- Breastfeeding and working – a common reason for weaning, which is not necessary. Breastfeeding and working life are easy to combine in times of modern breastfeeding aids such as electric breast pumps and also bottles that cause too little suction confusion. Bear in mind that you are entitled to regular breastfeeding or pumping down times during operation. These are enshrined in the Maternity Protection Act.
- Look forward to the common, beautiful time. It is an indescribable feeling to breastfeed a baby. Be proud to feed your baby!
- Initial difficulties are usually overcome quickly. Ask your care midwife for advice and remember that you can take the help of your midwife during the whole breastfeeding period.