Dr Charles Agugua, a gynecologist with a private hospital on Thursday said delay in breastfeeding after birth could lead to breast engorgement.
Breast engorgement is when mother’s breasts are painfully over-fulled of milk, usually, the condition occurs when a mother makes more milk than her baby uses.
In the process, the breasts may become firm and swollen, which can make it hard for the baby to breastfeed but the problem can be treated at home.
Agugua told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that breast engorgement could also occur due to insufficient breast feeding and when the mother stayed from the baby for a long.
Agugua recommended early initiation of breastfeeding within thirty minute after birth to avoid pains for the mother and stress for the baby.
“ If this is not done, the milk that is supposed to be produced will not be produced.
“The little that is produced because the baby is not sucking will accumulate and becomes more difficult for the baby to suckle, if it is not relived on time the damage will be done.
“ Infections can set in, an abscess can form later such that if care is not provided immediately, it can result to operation.’’
Agugua further said that exclusive breast feeding without water or any supplement was key to avoid breast engorgement.
“Exclusive breast feeding, prescribed by a medical doctor, is strictly for six months before other foods can be added.
“Even after six months, breast feeding must continue untill after two years and that is what we teach and recommend,’’ Agugua said.
According to him, the woman breast is created by God to fulfil the task of breast feeding and should be used as such.
“It is good to know that every woman can breast feed successfully and it is also good to know that breast milk is the best food when we look at the nutritional value.
“The comfort that comes with it when we look at the healthy component makes breast milk the best possible start we can give our young ones.’’ (NAN)