Common myths about breastfeeding - debunked and explained
Breastfeeding is a topic that can evoke a lot of emotions among new mothers. When it comes to breastfeeding almost everyone - whether it’s a neighbour or relative - has an opinion or a piece of advice. This can be stressful and even anxiety inducing, especially when said advice feels more like mom-shaming. Remember that you set your own rules in parenting. Whether or not you want to breastfeed is totally up to you!
Below, we list some common myths and do our best to debunk them with facts and scientific evidence.
Breastfeeding: the most common mom-shaming topic?
Criticizing and shaming parents, especially moms, for their parenting choices is unfortunately pretty common. And nowhere is mom-shaming more prevalent than when it comes to breastfeeding. As a new parent, you are fed this idea of "how breast milk is the best nutrition for your baby" and that it's the most wonderful feeling in the world. But is this true? Let's turn the question around.
Myth no1: Breastfeeding is easy
Breastfeeding is often seen as something natural, motherly and associated with femininity. However, the belief that it will just come naturally and go without a hitch is not a fair depiction. Babies are born with a reflex to look for the mother’s breast. However, the action of breastfeeding itself is something you must learn. In fact, it's not uncommon for it to take several weeks, sometimes even months, before breastfeeding goes painlessly.
Myth no2: Everyone can and should breastfeed
Mothers who “choose” not to breastfeed their children are often criticized both publicly and privately. The big Nestlé Baby Formula scandal during the seventies caused some misconceptions. During this period, babies became sick after being fed formula. Subsequently, causing a debate questioning whether it was a healthy option. However, it was in fact contaminated water causing the sickness. But ofcourse a lot has happened since then and you should not feel bad about not breastfeeding your baby. Many formulas on the market are filled with the nutrition your baby needs and bottle feeding still provides that closeness and a snug feeling.
Myth no3: Breastfeeding in public places is offensive
Breastfeeding in public is a popular topic to not only debate, but shame mothers for. Social attitudes and legal protection of public breastfeeding differs greatly from country to country. Breastfeeding publicly is common in many countries and not regarded as an issue. The nursing mother is protected by law in most of these countries. However, there are still some countries that forbid women to expose their breasts in public, even to nurse. Of course, you should do what’s most comfortable for you. We just want to let you know that breastfeeding is totally acceptable and okay!
Myth no4: It’s harder to stop breastfeeding if you do it for a longer period of time
There is only one rule to follow when it comes to breastfeeding: How long you breastfeed is up to you. It’s an individual thing and is controlled by a wide range of factors. Some mothers stop breastfeeding after only a couple of months and some never start. Others breastfeed for years and some until the child is six years old. There is no evidence showing that it will be harder - or easier - to stop after a certain period of time.
Breastfeeding with products from Najell
Did you know that all of our products are designed with breastfeeding in mind? The Najell Pregnancy Pillow includes two integrated nursing pillows. Giving you the possibility to find a good, comfortable position for both you and your baby. When you're out and about, carrying your baby around, we've made it easy for you to breastfeed in the baby carrier. Najell Baby Carriers are all designed to ease access to the mother’s breast. The Najell Wrap can be used skin to skin and is easy to breastfeed in. And with the Babynest SleepCarrier you can fold down one side of the nest. This way, you can breastfeed the baby lying down, without having to move them from the babynest.