Importance of early initiation of breastfeeding

Nigeria (SPRING | 2015)
Importance of early initiation of breastfeeding

Key Messages

  • Begin breastfeeding within the first 30 minutes of birth. Early breastfeeding helps the baby learn to breastfeed while the breast is still soft, helps reduce your bleeding, and helps eject the placenta.
  • Hold your newborn skin-to-skin immediately after birth. This will keep your baby warm and breathing well, help him or her reach the breast easily, and help you and your baby feel close.
  • Colostrum, the thick yellowish milk, is good for your baby.
  • Colostrum helps protect your baby from illness and helps remove the first dark stool.
  • Breastfeed frequently to help your breastmilk ‘come in’ and to ensure plenty of breastmilk.
  • The baby does not need additional water or other liquids before the milk comes in, or for the first 6 months of life. Do not give water or other liquids. They are not necessary and are dangerous for your baby.