As a mother, one faces various challenges related to breastfeeding. Foremost being convincing oneself that breastfeeding as an innate primal instinct is the most favorable mode of feeding for the baby. There are many of myths which are family oriented but few are even started by medical professionals as well. Let us take few of them which are generally prevalent among mothers and their relatives.
Myth 1 : Ghutti helps the baby to digest the feed.
Generally ghutti consists of sugar water or honey or some sweetened fluid. Easiest way to understand it , is, as we have dessert at the end of our meals since it gives a feeling of satiety to us. Similarly when a sugar water or “ghutti” is given to the baby it gives a feeling of fullness to the baby thus causing changes in the feeding pattern of the baby either less feed or no feed at all. On the other hand breastfeed act as a holy water and will never cause indigestion to the baby.
Myth 2: Mother can’t breastfeed with washed hairs.
The baby does not catch cold by mother with wet hairs, else the baby catch cold by germs and bacteria. Even the mother’s cold skin does not make the breast milk cold or unfit for the baby to consume. It’s a total superstition that washed hairs can cause the baby cold or sick.
Myth 3: A cesarean mother produces milk late.
There is no start point of mother to make breastfeed. A cesarean mother can also enjoy breastfeeding like others do. The key is to start attaching the baby in the first hour of the delivery. As more the baby latches, the sooner milk let down occurs. It’s all a game of hormones.
Myth 4 : Mother cannot breastfeed if she has fever.
When the mother has fever, her body produces antibodies in return of the infection acquired. These antibodies are passed on to the baby via breast milk. In this scenario the mother having fever not only gives food to the baby to fill the stomach but also provides antibodies rich breastfeed to fight off the infection. So the mother can feed even when she is sick with fever, common cold or cough. The only precaution she is required to take is to protect the droplet infection and wash hands before nursing the baby.
The best method to convince someone is not just brushing the above sentence “DO NOT” but to give a good reasoning to convince them “WHY NOT”.
Also read my previous article on Motherhood responsibilities and dilemma.
Ms. Priya Gandhi
Lactation consultant, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, New Delhi.
MSc. Nursing in Cardiology, Jamia Hamdardv University
BSc. (Hons) Nursing, Delhi University