The maternity leave breastfeeding plan: how to enjoy nursing for three months and go back to work guilt-free
Finally, a sensible plan for women who return to work
after a three-month maternity leave
Anyone who has ever had a baby has heard the prevailing medical wisdom that "breast is best" for baby's first food. Solid science stands behind that wisdom: Excellent studies show that there are immunological and other benefits for the breastfed baby. On the other hand, doctors and breastfeed- ing advocates rarely appreciate or even acknowledge the challenges that go along with breastfeeding until baby is ready for solid food -- anywhere from four to nine months. The simple and reasonable approach is one that many doctors and breastfeeding advocates unfortunately treat as sacrilege:
Limit breastfeeding to the length of your maternity leave.
As Dr. Wilkoff explains, the truth is that women who nurse for three months (or until their maternity leave is over) provide their children with an optimal start in terms of nutrition and can have the same rewarding experience as mothers who nurse their children much longer. In contrast to the insistence of militant breastfeeding advocates, he offers an important and comforting message: Breast is best for as long as you can comfortably manage it.
There are no guilt trips or political agendas here. Instead mothers will find:
a practical plan for establishing a nursing schedule
troubleshooting advice, including how moms can avoid becoming the baby's pacifier
help with making a smooth transition back to the workplace
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