Find out why the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding until six months of age.

Are you expecting? Like many mothers-to-be, you are probably researching which baby gear is best and safest for your child. But did you know that one of the safest and most important ways to protect your baby actually doesn't cost a thing? Here are six reasons why every mother should try to breastfeed their child.

  1. Breastfeeding helps protect a child against obesity. Childhood obesity is an epidemic in the United States. According to the CDC, a baby's risk of becoming an overweight child goes down with each month of breastfeeding.
  2. Breastfeeding helps keep kids healthy. For example, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the risk of hospitalization for lower respiratory tract infections in the first year is reduced 72% when a mom breastfeeds exclusively for at least four months. Breastfeeding exclusively in the early months of a child’s life has also been shown to reduce the risk of diabetes and childhood leukemia.
  3. Breastfeeding saves money. Formula costs can really add up. Breastfeeding may require purchasing a breast pump, a few nursing bras and accessories like nursing pads, but it’s much cheaper than buying formula regularly.
  4. Breastfeeding reduces the risk of allergies in children. According to the CDC, babies who are exclusively breastfed for three to four months have a reduced incidence of clinical asthma, atopic dermatitis and eczema.
  5. Breastfeeding is natural and healthy. Breast milk is the best food for babies. Your body was made to feed your infant. It isn’t always easy, and you’ll need support from your doctors and family, but breast is best.
  6. Breastfeeding is beneficial to mom. Nursing your baby can help you recover from childbirth faster, can help you lose weight, and can reduce your risk of postpartum depression. Additionally, breastfeeding has shown to reduce a mother’s risk of developing certain types of breast and ovarian cancer.

North Hills Hospital is committed to providing the best care for women in the region. With our recently renovated $2 million women's care facility and our experienced medical staff available 24 hours a day, new mothers can rest assured as they look forward to a safe and healthy labor & delivery experience. For more information, please visit us online or call 1-855-5NHILLS for a physician referral.

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