It's the second week of Midwife Motivation Mondays! I hope you all had a fantastic week and are feeling brilliant about being midwives or midwives in the making.
Or if you are having one of those exhausting weeks where you have given your all and more, Midwife Motivation Mondays is the place to be to remember exactly why you loved midwifery in the first place. You'll also get some cool facts to share with your midwifery mates or clients.
Today's topic: Breastfeeding can reduce snoring? 5 surprising facts about breastfeeding you probably don't know because they're a bit obscure:
1. Breastfed babies appear to have less orthodontic needs when older. Nearly 10,000 children were assessed and it seems exclusively breastfed babies were far less likely to need corrective treatment for malocclusion (misalignment of teeth) (Labbok and Hendershot 1987).
2. The above paper also suggested that the better shaped dental arch that breastfed opposed to bottlefed babies develop may prevent snoring and sleep apnea later in life.
3. Breastfed babies may progress to be children who can cope with stress better. A 2006 study looked at children with parents who were divorcing, and the breastfed children showed a statistically significant decrease in anxiety (though it's not clear whether this is a nutritive benefit or something to do with close maternal-child bonds, or something else).
4. You know that thing babies do when they've just had first breastfeed after birth? Where they hang onto breast without sucking and just look up a mum? That's normal (according to UNICEF). The poor kid has only just found his food source, no wonder he's hanging on to it, it's all been
room womb service before now. Let him carry on until he comes off before weighing him.
I know, not always possible if it's busy - but it's great to be able to say 'I'm not going to weigh the baby just yet as I don't want to disturb the complex hormonal pathway that's occurring to develop your bond and to establish breastfeeding ' (and I want a cup of tea).
5. This is just a theory, but one so cool I didn't want to leave it out. In the 1960s there were some studies done on cows. Antigens were introduced into the orifice of their udders, and antibodies to fight the antigens started to be produced in large numbers in the milk.
In 2008 an American study (Cantani) suggested 'diathelic immunity', meaning basically a feedback system between germs in a baby's saliva and mouth being introduced to the breast, and mum beginning to produce breast milk containing a lot of the antibodies needed to fight that particular infection. Which is a pretty cool idea.
And it's always worth being reminded that colostrum and breastmilk contain lots of IgA antibodies which cover babies' mucosa and digestive tract with a nice protective, anti-bacterial covering 🙂
Just to say though, not everyone can breastfeed. Support and promote ladies, don't divide and conquer!