Is Extended Breastfeeding Right For You?

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It’s no secret that breastfeeding is an incredibly beneficial part of a baby’s life. The bond between mother and child that is created during breastfeeding is irreplaceable, and it provides the perfect nutrition for your little one.

But what happens when you decide to take breastfeeding beyond the first year?

Although extended breastfeeding can be rewarding, there are definitely some disadvantages you should be aware of before making the decision.

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Health Considerations

One disadvantage to extended breastfeeding is that your baby may not be getting all of the nutrients they need as they grow older. After around eighteen months, breast milk will provide fewer nutritional benefits than formula or solid foods.

That’s why it’s important to ensure your baby gets enough healthy food in their diet if you are nursing them past a year old.

Additionally, the World Health Organization (WHO) suggests introducing complementary foods by six months of age in order to meet the nutritional needs of your baby as they grow.

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Social Stigma

When it comes to extended breastfeeding, one thing many moms worry about is social stigma from family members and friends who might not understand why you are continuing to nurse beyond a certain age.

This can create tension and guilt for nursing mothers who feel judged for their decision-making process regarding how long they choose to breastfeed their baby.

If this applies to you, remember that no matter how long or short you decide to breastfeed, it’s ultimately up to you as a parent and nobody else’s opinion should interfere with your own judgment call on this important matter.

Physical Fatigue

As babies get older, they often become more active and curious which means they want more “mommy time” than ever before! Unfortunately, this can present its own set of challenges—especially if mom has other commitments like work or school on her plate too!

Nursing an older baby can be very physically taxing for mothers so make sure you don’t overexert yourself if you choose extended breastfeeding as an option for yourself and your little one.

Breastfeeding during the night can also take its toll and be overwhelming for a longer period of time. Here are some tips on how to get more sleep during breastfeeding time.

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Weighing out all the pros and cons of extended breastfeeding can be overwhelming but it doesn’t have to be! Ultimately only YOU know what’s best for both you and your child when it comes down to deciding whether or not extended breastfeeding is right for both of you.

So remember – trust yourself and follow your heart when making this important decision! No matter what choice you make in regards to breastfeeding – congrats mama – because raising children is no easy feat! You’re doing an amazing job!

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