You should start thinking about feeding habits and methods before your baby is born. Many moms are convinced of the benefits of breastfeeding based on what they've seen and read, and what they've learned from family and friends; but, many others are unable or unwilling to breastfeed their babies.
Breast milk is the healthiest source of nutrition for your baby because it is easily digested and absorbed, and contains important antibodies that protect your baby from respiratory and ear infections, asthma, allergies, and diabetes. According to most health care professionals, breastfeeding is considered the best source of nutrition for a newborn during the first six months. Breastfeeding can help mothers lose weight and reduce their risk of breast cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.
Should you feel guilty if you choose not to breastfeed? Certainly not!
In reality, infant formulae are improving at matching the ingredients and benefits of human milk, so you may rest assured that your baby's nutritional needs are fulfilled.
In any case, how and what you feed your infant is a personal choice that should be carefully considered. Keep in mind as well if you decide to breastfeed your child, you must:
Drink enough of fluids on a daily basis, especially water.
Make certain you get enough sleep.
Maintain appropriate hygiene and breast care to avoid irritation and problems.
Relax and enjoy the experience.
If you chose to use the baby bottles, you need to:
Choose an iron-fortified formula because there is indication that iron deficiency during the first years of life has a negative impact on brain development.
Understand that you do not need to heat the milk for your baby; it is fine to consume it at room temperature.
Sterilize the bottles after each usage
Always clean all utensils before feeding your baby