“Breastfeeding or Bottle Feeding? Which should I choose?” -Mrs. Ankita Desai, mother of a newborn baby.
This is not only a question on the mind of Mrs. Ankita Desai but also a provocative question on every new mother’s mind. Whenever you become a mother of a child, your first challenge is to take the decision about the task of feeding your child.
The debate regarding the breastfeeding and bottle feeding is not a new phenomenon but has been around for years. Being a mother, you have to take the decision whether to breastfeed or bottle feed your baby. Therefore, you should know the pros and cons of both breastfeeding and bottle feeding, which we will discuss here.
- 1 Advantages of Breastfeeding
- 2 Disadvantages of Breastfeeding
- 3 Bad Effects of Some Medication on Breast Milk
- 4 Advantages of Bottle Feeding
- 5 Disadvantages of Bottle Feeding
Advantages of Breastfeeding
A research suggests that breastmilk is the best option for your baby. Why? Here are some advantages of breastfeeding.
Your baby is prone to infection especially in the age of first few months. Your breast milk contains a strong immunity power, white blood cells and natural chemical, which help in fighting illness. The American Academy of Pediatrics states that breast milk prevents sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Your breast milk is full of nutrition, which your newborn baby needs to stay healthy. Breastfeeding baby can fight asthma and allergies.
Easier To Digest
Breast milk is easily digestible because it contains enzymes that make it easier to digest than formula. Breastfeeding babies have low tendency to vomit.
As breastmilk is natural and a constant source of food for your baby, you do not have to buy it. So it is cheaper than formula.
Full of Nutrients
Breast milk fulfills your baby’s nutritional needs at every stage. It contains all sorts of nutrients that your baby needs. Breastfeeding baby will never fall short of protein, carbohydrates, fat, and calcium. Its fatty acids promote brain development.
Helps in Weight- Loss
Breastfeeding baby faces a lesser risk of obesity. On the other hand, a new mother can lose weight through breastfeeding.
Better Bonding between Baby and Mother
During breastfeeding, there grows confidence and security feeling within a baby. Breastfeeding deepens the bond between the baby and the mother.
Read More – Foods to eat to produce more breastmilk
Disadvantages of Breastfeeding
The Cons of breastfeeding are very negligible. Yet there are some potential issues, which matter regarding breastfeeding.
Need to be Physically Present
During breastfeeding, you need to be physically present always. There may arise some emergency works for which you have to go out. Alternatively, you may be seriously ill and are not capable to feed your baby. On the other hand, you are not getting suitable breastfeeding locations outside your home. These situations throw challenges to your breastfed baby, who knows to drink milk out of breast only.
Bad Effects of Some Medication on Breast Milk
A mother should always consult a doctor before taking any medications because some medicines have negative effects on breast milk. These medicines, if passed on through breast milk to your baby, may be harmful to your baby.
Advantages of Bottle Feeding
All Mothers Cannot Feed Breast Milk
All mothers are not fortunate enough to breastfeed their babies because of some serious health issues. Some mothers prefer bottle feeding to breastfeeding.
Anyone Can Feed Your Baby
We know that during breastfeeding, mothers have to be present physically or only mothers can feed their babies. However, anyone can feed your baby if your baby is a bottle-fed baby. Your babysitter or your husband can lend a hand in this task of feeding.
Easier Than Breastfeeding
Bottle Feeding is more convenient than breastfeeding. Babies easily suck milk from a bottle, while they have to give more effort to suck milk from the breast. On the other hand, mothers do not experience any uncomfortable feeling, as they are not physically involved during bottle-feeding.
Mothers Can Eat Everything
To increase the quality of your breast milk, you have to be conscious of what you consume. You should always avoid spicy foods if you choose to breastfeed. Nevertheless, in case of bottle-feeding, you do not have to bother about your diet.
Fewer Feeding Times
Breast milk is easily digestible. Therefore, your baby needs frequent feeding. However, formula feeding needs longer times to digest. Therefore, you do not have to feed your baby often.
Recommended Read – Bottle Feeding Pros and Cons
Disadvantages of Bottle Feeding
Bottle-feeding requires a few accessories and the formula itself. You should sterilize your bottles regularly. Therefore, you need to buy all accessories for bottle feeding. Not only that, as babies are vulnerable to infection, you need to change bottles and nipples frequently. It is quite difficult for low-income families.
Need Proper Preparation
Today formula contents all nutrients that your baby needs. However, proper preparation of formula is vital each time. If you cannot prepare it the right way, your baby will not get proper nutritional content.
Not all babies are able to take formula. They become prone to allergies after bottle-feeding, as the formula is not natural. In this case, you have to experiment with different formulas and select the one, which your body can tolerate. For instance, those babies, who have allergies to lactose, should take lactose-free formulas.
Now, whether to choose breastfeeding or bottle-feeding is your own decision. You have to decide based on your needs and ability. Though most of the mothers and doctors prefer breastfeeding to bottle feeding, do not feel guilty if you cannot breastfeed your baby.
Nowadays, formulas have all the nutrients, which are present in breast milk. You have to be conscious enough about the sterilization of bottles only. Moreover, the question of bonding between baby and mother is negligible because during bottle feeding also, a bond grows between them through eye contact and physical touch.