From the time you pee on a stick and get the little blue "plus" sign, right up until your kid graduates from high school, you'll be getting advice from almost everyone about almost everything. And yes, that includes the benefits of breastfeeding. The advice you get in general may not even be asked for on your part, but basically because you're a new parent (or a parent with a new baby), everyone seems to feel the need to put in their two cents. Which, as every parent will find, can be a blessing and a burden, depending on who is imparting their parental wisdom on you.
Whether you decide to breastfeed or formula feed your new baby, chances are, you'll be getting conflicting information and advice from all sides. And we all know that, as a new parent with a new baby, the last thing any of us need is more stress or worries. Especially when, in reality, both options are good for your baby. Breastfeeding is a beautiful thing, but so is a healthy and happy baby. And if you aren't able to breastfeed and are fearful of formula, things won't be very easy for you or baby.
The benefits of breastfeeding involve bonding, nutrition, and a natural source of nourishment. But formula is just as good for your baby and is sometimes your only option. If you find yourself worrying about giving formula instead of breast milk, you certainly aren't alone, and here's why you have nothing to worry about.
15 Breastfeeding Anxiety Is Real
Have you ever tried and tried to breastfeed your baby, but with no results or progress? Yeah, we thought so. The scary truth, though, is that moms who are so gung-ho about breastfeeding can push themselves to the limit of anxiety and are faced with the stress of not being able to nourish their babies because society teaches them that only the breast is best.
14 Some Moms Don't Produce Enough Milk
It's no secret that not all mothers give birth right on time. Sometimes, it's days after your estimated due date, and other times it could be weeks before. And in such cases, a new mom's milk production may be lacking. In which case, formula would be the best alternative for her new baby's health.
13 Formula Is There For A Reason
Formula isn't some secret powder potion that we all have to buy on the black market. It's sold almost everywhere you can think of and it's there for a reason. To help you feed your baby and ensure their health. If formula was not meant to be an option, it would not be lining the shelves at grocery stores.
12 The Bonding Still Happens
When your baby is being cradled in your arms while being breastfed, or cradled in your arms while sucking on a bottle of formula, they are still in the same position, the same arms, and staring up at the source of their meal. And guess what? They're still bonding with you, despite what you may worry about.
11 You're Doing What You Think Is Best For Your Baby
If you're feeding and taking care of your child and they aren't "needing" for anything, then aren't you doing what you're supposed to be doing as a parent? You're caring for your baby in the best way you know how, making the decisions because you are the one allowed to do that.
10 Sometimes Formula Feeding Is The Only Option
Since everything you put into your body while breastfeeding affects your breast milk, you've got to be extra cautious of what you eat, drink, and otherwise ingest. Mainly, medications, which is important to remember and be extra aware of. And if you need to take anti-depressants or anti-anxiety medication, it's best to keep taking your meds and formula feed instead of giving up your necessary medication.
9 How You Feed Your Baby Doesn't Define You As A Mom
Just because you choose to formula feed, it doesn't mean that it's the only basis on which you should be judged or seen as a parent. Of course, being faced with judgments isn't warranted or necessary at all when you're a parent, but if someone is going to view you for your parenting style, your feeding choice is just one small part of it.
8 Formula Babies Have Less Frequent Feedings
And less frequent feedings mean more time for the new parents to take a breather and relax, if only for a few extra minutes or so. Since formula causes babies to feel fuller for longer, they may also be that much more likely to sleep longer and sleep through the night faster. Which, of course, means less middle of the night wake ups for you and your partner.
7 Formula Is Regulated By The FDA
Since formula is a food, it's regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, which alone should make you feel at ease when considering formula feeding over breastfeeding. It may not come from the breast, but it's the most reliable substitute and was created to be just that. Not only are the infant formula regulations frequently updated, but also regularly tested for proper nutritional content.
6 These People Giving Formula Advice Probably Don't Even Know What They're Talking About
If the person currently lecturing you about formula feeding doesn't even have kids, then feel free to ignore it. For some unknown reason, even those with no children of their own find it necessary to voice their opinions and ideas about how to raise your children. It's a completely unfortunate fact, but a fact of life all the same.
5 Formula Feeding Offers The Rest Of The Family A Chance To Bond With Baby
If you're concerned abut losing that special bonding time by opting for formula feeding, don't be so quick to discredit the bonding benefits of formula. Giving your baby formula enables other family members the chance to feed and bond with the baby too.
4 Different Formula Varieties Offer The Chance To Give Your Baby What They Need
Even if you have every intention in the world of breastfeeding, your baby could still reject your breast milk. This could be due to gastric or reflux problems with your baby. Thankfully, there are enough formula variations to find the perfect choice for your baby's health and nutrition.
3 You Don't Have To Force Yourself To Breastfeed If It Isn't For You
If breastfeeding isn't something that makes you comfortable, it's o.k. It's not for everyone, and with the option of formula, it's certainly not the be all and end all of nutrition for your baby. And if you choose to opt out of breastfeeding to prevent anxiety on your part, and therefore when it comes to your new baby, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.
2 A Healthy Pregnancy Is What Aids Most In Having A Healthy Baby
A study from from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim reviewed more than 50 cases of relationships between new mothers in their babies and concluded that a newborn baby's health is in relation to how the mother's health and nutrition was during the pregnancy. As in, not necessarily after the baby was born and either formula or breastfed.
1 This Is Your Decision As A Parent
Whether you decide to formula feed or breastfeed your new baby, whatever works for the both of you is all that matters. And if you're making a decision based on what will best benefit your baby, then there's no reason to worry yourself over not breastfeeding. As a parent, it's hard to not take to heart what others may say about our parenting choice, but as long as you're doing everything in the best interest of your own child, then that's really all that matters, right?