Should I Breast-feed my Child or Formula-feed my Child?

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During the span of one year in the United States about four million babies are born. The average age for a mom in the United States is 25 years old. First time moms have many questions and decisions to make regarding the methods of feeding and the nutrients their child will be receiving. “In the United States and worldwide, more than 90 percent of infants are breast-fed, but only 36 percent are exclusively breast-fed for the first six months” (Berger et al., 2011). It’s the parent’s choice whether to formula-feed or breast-feed their child, and the parents have many questions as for which method is best. For instance, should I breast-feed my child or formula-feed my child and for how long? Is my child getting enough milk and nutritional value? Then, probably the most commonly asked questions, what are the benefits and drawbacks for breast-feeding versus formula-fed babies? Breast-feeding and formula-feeding each have benefits and drawbacks, but again it’s the parent’s choice to decide what they consider to be best for them and their child. “Ideally, nutrition starts with colostrum, a thick high-calorie fluid secreted by the mother’s breast at birth” (Drover et al., 2009). Three days later the mother begins producing breast milk. Breast milk has numerous benefits. Breast milk, unlike formula based from cow’s milk, is naturally sterile. That means the milk from the breast is always at room temperature. Breast milk is also rich in nutrients, such as iron and a variety of vitamins. “Babies who are exclusively breast-fed are less often sick” (Berger et al., 2011). Every parent wants their children to be healthy. Many studies show that breast-feeding is healthier for your child and the parent, and it makes your child’s future school ... ... middle of paper ... ...d receive if they were being breast-fed. The baby therefore may not prosper as much a breast-fed baby might. Babies require a considerable amount of physical, mental, and emotional care. They can stress you out, make you feel like you’re losing your mind, feel like nothing is going right, or give you unbelievable bliss. However, your child requires certain daily nutrients. Everyone wants their child to be happy and healthy. Whether you choose breast-feeding or formula-feeding, both options can be effective ways for the baby to thrive. I have stated the pros and cons for each method, but ultimately it’s the parent’s choice to determine what is best for them and their baby. They’ll weigh the advantages, disadvantages, conveniences and inconveniences, and then make their choice. When your baby cries out hungrily, “Got milk?” what will you choose to give them?

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