This Q & A has been compiled from a live chat conducted on BabyChakra with a Certified Professional Midwife and Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator, Dr Vijaya Krishnan on August 7, 2015. The questions therein, are actual questions asked by mothers.
Q:It is true that feeding builds a bond, but does a mom who discontinues suffer compared to other moms in this respect?
A: No. Breastfeeding bonds last a lifetime! No matter whether it is for a few months or it is for few years, a mom and baby remember that. The skin to skin, the hormones that come into both you and the baby make for this wonderful short term and long term experience
Q: How long should one ideally feed for? When is it a healthy time or age to wean?
A: WHO recommends that breastfeeding continue for 2 years. First 6 months of exclusive breastfeeding, and then up to 2 years of follow up of feeding. Food before 1 is just for fun!
Q: I am told it's possible for adoptive mothers to breastfeed too. Does it involve hormone induction like in IVF? Any repercussions on the health of either?
A: It does take a while though, and a lot of patience. No IVF process is not required for that. A mother who keeps the baby skin to skin with her and lets the baby nurse at the breast, and pumps frequently over a period of time will start to produce some milk. However, that process takes a long time, and the baby will need more milk than what she can immediately produce. She will need a lot of support and hands on advice from a good lactation consultant, as well as have other methods to supplement baby from a milk bank.
Q: My baby is 2 months old. I do breast feed him but sometimes the milk is not sufficient for him, so I give him formula milk. Is that ok?
A: Every mother has enough milk for her baby. Babies go through growth spurts. However, if you keep nursing on demand, your smart body will automatically up the milk production within 24 to 48 hours! Breastfeeding is as much in the brain, as it is in the body. If you feel stressed and think there is no milk, your supply will be less. However, if you eat and drink well and relax into a pattern of demand feeding you will really not need any supplements.
Q: I will be joining office once he is 4 months old so at that time, can I provide him formula milk?
A: You can pump and feed baby.
Q: Will pump feed be sufficient for the whole day?
A: if you plan at least 3 weeks in advance, you can pump and store breastmilk.Formula milk should be last option not the first. If you plan well, just your pumped and stored milk will be sufficient for baby when you are away at work. You will need to continue to pump at work daily on a schedule so you keep producing and storing for your baby. If you are interested you can join in our Facebook group Healthy Mother Breastfeeding Support Network. It is a closed group and we have so many documents there to help moms pump and feed exclusively even when they go back to work.
Q: Breastfeeding for adoptive mothers may take several months, right? Is there a possibility that the baby may refuse to latch on to breasts if older than six months of age? Or can it start at any age?
A: The older the baby gets, the less likely they will latch because they get used to the feel and flow of the bottle. So ideally they should be nursed since birth, and provided a supplemental nursing system at mom's breast with milk bank initially, until mom can make some for her baby.
Find this interesting? Read the Part 2 of the Q&As from this Chat.