Benefits and Barriers of Breastfeeding

The participants in the survey included five men and five women. Three of the women had personal experience with breastfeeding. The other two have no experience with breastfeeding. One has no child while the other has a child but did not breastfeed her. The older female participant is 50 years with the youngest being 16 years of age. For men, the older participant is 60 with the youngest being 16 years.

Summary of the interview

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Breastfeeding is an activity that majority of the population perceive to be critical in the development of a child. 70 percent of all the participants agreed that, breastfeeding is a child’s right. Children are entitled to breastfeeding. Breastfeeding offers the infant with important nutrients including antibodies, which doctors claim are not available in any other food.

This boosts the child’s immune system. The role of breastfeeding in developing a strong immune system is crucial in every child. Children that are not breastfed are vulnerable to diseases. In fact, some participants termed them as weaklings. Breastfeeding enhances response to vaccines which is detrimental in disease fighting.

Breastfeeding enhances teething in babies. Children that are breastfed have a better teething ability than those fed on formula milk. Besides, breast milk prevents diarrhea in children below twelve months. Breastfeeding also protects the baby from developing allergies, prevent illness and promote the development of the brain hence intelligence.

The mother also gains from breastfeeding. The body system is automatic and breastfeeding is critical in maintaining harmonic balances. When a woman fails to breastfeed, they interfere with the hormonal functions thus expose themselves to danger of developing breast cancer and other related complications such ovarian cancer, thus breastfeeding is beneficial to the mother.

Besides, nutritional value, breastfeeding bears an important bonding factor between the mother and the child. By breastfeeding, the mother is able to be close to her baby, know her and understand her. Breastfeeding is a special way of establishing a mother child relationship. Children that are not breastfed do not seem to acknowledge their mothers even at a later age. According to men in the interview, breastfeeding is the main thing that makes a mother.

On the contrary, some people especially young women perceive breastfeeding as degrading. They believe that breastfeeding makes them lose their sexy body figure. In their own argument, breastfeeding makes the breasts to sag. Some men and women also perceive breastfeeding in public as a sort of disgrace. They believe it is a private affair and the mother should not breastfeed her baby in public. Besides admitting that breastfeeding is important for the baby, some oppose the idea of breastfeeding in public. However, some people believe that, breastfeeding is an activity that no one should be ashamed about. We should all appreciate our mothers and hence should embrace breastfeeding.

Although breastfeeding is optional, it is very important in the life of a person. The support men give to women is also very crucial in promoting this activity of breastfeeding. In my own opinion, I think people should not shy away from breastfeeding even in public. Men play a great role in promoting breastfeeding. Women tend to shy from breastfeeding mostly because of men. They perceive it as degrading, but the fact is, every child is proud of their mothers and we should encourage mothers to breastfeed their children no matter the circumstances.

References

Pamela K. (1996). Breastfeeding: A mother’s gift. New York: Pearson’s Education.