Dr Juliana Olunuga, Medical Director, Ebute Meta Comprehensive Health Centre, Lagos, has encouraged breastfeeding mothers to embrace the six-month exclusive breastfeeding.
Olunuga gave the advice at a seminar organised by the hospital to mark the 2020 World Breastfeeding Week with the theme: “Support Breastfeeding for a Healthier Planet”.
According to her, this will enhance proper development of babies.
Newsmen report that The World Breastfeeding Week is marked globally from Aug. 1 to Aug. 7 to create awareness on the benefits of breastfeeding.
“Breast milk is cheap, free and available; so, I encourage mothers to practice exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months for proper growth of their babies.
“Adherence to these rules will improve lives of children physically and mentally, as they develop,” she said.
Olunuga harped on the hospital’s commitment to continue to protect, promote and support breastfeeding for the health of the planet and its people.
Also, Dr Ibironke Sodeinde, the Acting President, Medical Women Association of Nigeria, Lagos branch, said that everyone has a role to play in ensuring effective breastfeeding of children.
According to Sodeinde, health workers should always be available to counsel and support the mothers on ways to overcoming challenges that come with exclusive breastfeeding.
“There are several traditional practices that interfere with optimal breastfeeding; but, we all have a role to play to ensure that babies are adequately breastfed.
“The benefits are enormous and these include: brain development, prevention of respiratory problems, provides both nutritional and emotional benefits to both mother and child.
“One of the essential benefits of breastfeeding is that it also promotes bonding between mother and child,” she said.
Sodeinde noted that the World Health Organisation (WHO) has shown and publicise the importance of exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months for babies, before the introduction of healthy complementary foods.