Mrs. Olubunmi Aiyedun , the President National Association of Nigeria Paediatric Nurses says exclusive breastfeeding does not flatten or make breasts sag.
The paediatrician, who noted that a lot of women prefer not to feed their babies exclusively because they don’t want their breasts to sag or get flattened and she described it as a myth. According to Aiyedun, whether or not a woman exclusively breastfeed her child, the breast will still fall later in her life when it is time for the breast to rest.
She stressed the need for every nursing mother to exclusively breastfeed their children, noting that it helps to reduce the risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer.
Aiyedun advised nursing mothers to wear good bra when breasting in order to help package the breast to make it firm.
The paediatrician said breast milk contains mostly water, adding that there is no reason to give babies water in the first six months after birth.“Exclusive breastfeeding is economical and is also ideal food for the baby as well as saves money for the family and the community.’’
The health official also said that for exclusive breastfeeding to be effective and sustained there must be a good relationship with the gate keepers such as the head of communities, religious and traditional rulers among others because such persons can influence women, especially nursing mothers positively or negatively.
She added that having a baby friendly environment for working class mothers is another measure in ensuring that exclusive breastfeeding would be sustained.
She frowned at some cultural practices which entailed the mother giving new born water in the first six months from the stream claiming it is a taboo for mothers to disobey such practices.
According to her, giving some kind of incentives, training and assistance from Community Support Group and involvement of husbands from the antenatal stage through delivery will also help in sustaining exclusive breastfeeding.
She, therefore, encouraged husbands to support their wives to practice exclusive breastfeeding while calling on the media to help in creating awareness on the need for nursing mothers to feed their babies exclusively for six months.
The paediatrician commended international bodies such as “Save The Children’’, “World Health Organization (WHO) as well as local Non- Governmental Organizations (NGOs) for their support in making sure that exclusive breastfeeding is sustained in the country.