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A baby should be breastfeed for at least the first few months after birth. Breastfeeding has a number of benefits for both the mother and child. Apart from being the best source of nutrition for the baby, it also helps the mother and child bond.
Here are a few benefits of breastfeeding your baby.
- Nutrition: No formula can be compared to the nutrition provided by a mother’s milk. The first milk produced by a mother’s breasts is known as colostrum which is rich in antibodies and proteins. Breast milk is made up of the perfect mix of proteins, vitamins and essential fats. It is also easier to digest as compared to formula feeds.
- Immunity boost: A mother’s milk is rich in antibodies and helps strengthen the newborn child’s immunity. These antibodies also help lower the baby’s risk of developing asthma or allergies later in life. Babies that are breastfed are also said to have a lower risk of suffering from ear infections, respiratory problems and diarrhoea. It also plays an important role in lowering chances of sudden infant death syndrome. Breastfeeding is also said to protect babies from certain types of cancer in infancy and later stages,
- Bonding: While being breastfed, a baby is held close to the mother and has skin to skin contact. This makes the baby feel secure and helps him or her to bond with the mother. For the mother, this process can also help fight postpartum depression and help reconnect with the baby.
- Healthy weight: Babies who are breastfed are said to be less likely to develop obesity. This is because breast milk has lower levels of insulin as compared to formula and babies who are breastfed have higher level of appetite and fat regulating hormone called leptin. As they grow, these babies put on a healthy amount of weight, but refrain from overeating and have healthier eating patterns. This helps maintain a healthy BMI and prevents diseases like diabetes etc.
- Boosts intelligence: Studies show that babies who were breastfed for the first six months have a higher IQ than those who were not. Thus, breastfeeding is said to play a significant role in cognitive development. There are two main reasons for this. Firstly, breast milk is said to fatty acids that are not available in formulas, Secondly, the emotional bonding between mother and child is also said to contribute towards boosting IQ levels.
While siblings are the force that breathes life into any family structure, it has also been seen as a challenge of sorts to manage siblings and bring out the best in each one of them. In any family unit, there are a number of entities who need to be nurtured in a certain way to ensure that their identities are not hampered by a "one size fits all" style of parenting. Every child is different and will need to be handled differently. Besides this, there are other related challenges that will contribute to the quality of the relationships between the siblings, as well as the rivalry that they may feel towards each other when it comes to attention, achievements and varied other factors.
Read on to know the ten tips to tackle sibling rivalry:
- Make Friends before Birth: encourage your first born to connect even before the birth of the new baby by including him or her in the changes you see and feel. Planning for the new baby with your first born will also help in such cases.
- Staying positive is a big factor that will help the children in feeling confident despite their different qualities and strengths.
- Comparison is a big no no. Stay away from these kind of comparisons so that the children do not feel like they have to fight with each other for your praise.
- Time Sharing: Ensure that you divide your time well and indulge each child in his or her area of interest so that they feel like you are always there for each of them.
- Harmonious Start to the day: this will ensure that the children have a special bond at the end of the day. Make sure that they help each other and divide chores accordingly. The older siblings should be given the care giving tasks while the younger ones should be taught to obey them and play along.
- Humour them: It is a known fact that humour is the best medicine that breaks even the most tension filled atmosphere.
- Family Meetings: Hold family meetings to discuss important things and even intense fights so that everyone's needs and issues are addressed.
- Empathy: Teaching your child to empathize with others will help him or her steer clear of needless rivalry at home too.
- Ignore the Small: Let them figure out the smaller fights, yet always be there to address the bigger issues so that they know you are there for them.
- Equal Treatment: Treating them equally does not mean doing the same thing for each of them. It means giving them equal time and attention with personalized treatment to suit varied temperaments. This will also give them a lot of individual confidence which eventually kills any feelings of rivalry.