The Healing Power of Breast Milk

We all know how beneficial breastfeeding can be for our babies. Breast milk contains all of the vitamins and minerals babies need to grow and develop. It is high in fat, helping babies to set down fat stores and gain weight. And every woman produces breast milk that is specifically tailored to the needs of her own baby. But can breast milk do more than just provide a nutritional meal for baby? You may have heard that many women use breast milk to treat a variety of illnesses, but does breast milk really have healing powers? This article will give you the lowdown on whether or not breast milk can really help to heal all that ails you.

Is It Safe To Breastfeed When You Are Sick

My Milk Can Do What?
Whether you are surfing the internet or flipping through your favorite parenting magazine, you have probably come across numerous references to breast milk. You may have also discovered that breast milk isn’t only used for breastfeeding your child. In fact, breast milk is often used to help heal minor illnesses and injuries. But what can breast milk supposedly heal? Well, breast milk is purportedly able to heal:

 

  • conjunctivitis or "pink eye"
  • ear infections
  • scrapes, scratches, and cuts
  • sore nipples

 

Breast milk can supposedly also lower the risk of childhood cancers, SIDS, heart disease, and breast cancer.

Does Breast Milk Really Heal?
Many doctors, researchers, and scientist agree that breast milk does appear to have healing properties that can prove beneficial when it comes to treating minor illnesses and injuries. This is because of the antibodies that breast milk contains. Just as breast milk provides your baby with necessary antibodies to fight off infection, it can also work to kill off bacteria and viruses when applied topically to problem areas.

Nevertheless, breast milk is probably not potent enough to completely kill off infections and other illnesses. Most health care providers do recommend that you seek traditional medical care for these problems, in order to ensure that they completely heal. However, two common illnesses that appear to be helped by the use of breast milk include pink eye and sore nipples.

Conjuctivitis
Conjuctivitis, commonly known as pink eye, is a type of eye infection that is highly contagious and very unpleasant to have. It causes the eye to become inflamed, crusted, and sore. Many people treat conjunctivitis by applying a small amount of breast milk to the affected eye. A particular antibody in the breast milk, called immunoglobulin A, prevents the pink eye bacteria from attaching to the mucosal surface of the eye. This limits the growth of the bacteria, helping to end the eye infection.

Table of Contents
1. Breast Milk and Illnesses
2. Breast milk as healer
 
 
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mama-of-two
And to those mothers who's breast milk suddenly starts decreasing & then dissapears, I once had this natural doctor tell me 3 reasons on WHY women lose their breast milk supply. #1. NOT PUMPING OR NURSING OFTEN ENOUGH (every 2 hours during the day & about every 3 hrs at night). Quick comment about that - once my baby was couple months old & my milk was established well - I went through 9-12 hrs of not pumping so its possible to get your nighttime sleep & continue breastfeeding. However during the day I would go back to pumping every 2-3 hrs. To those mothers who need to go back to work - I was one of those mothers who went back to work when my baby was 1 month old. On my break time - I ate & pumped at the same time. Ask your boss/employer IF instead of 30 min of break time every 6 hrs, you can instead get 15min every 3 hrs. It doesn't have a chance of happening IF you don't try .....#2. NOT DRINKING ENOUGH LIQUIDS. And coffee, tea, colas DON'T count as they dehydrate the body of liquids. Milk & juices are ok occasionally. However daily it should be WATER about 8 cups of 8oz DAILY. #3. STRESS - has big effect on milk supply. With my 1st baby when he was 5 1/2 months old I had big stress (life changing) not going to get into details of it but due to this stress my milk supply started decreasing to where I had pumped only couple of drops. That was additional panic for me! Then I decided, me worrying or stressing about it wont change anything , it will ONLY take a toll on my baby's health. To decrease stress - I started walking (with a baby), doing yoga, meditation, deep breathing, visualizing better future. Coming up with a plan how to make the problem better. And my milk started increasing. So mommies - it is possible for milk to go from drops to increase to many ounces in one feeding! Determination ....!!! My purpose of sharing all this with you all is to help you moms out there find a way for your baby to give the best that you possibly can. It's not going to be easy, but can you put a price on YOUR baby's health ? Many parents out there say: "I love my child so much I've give & do anything for my baby!" Really? Anything? Would that "anything" include: putting effort into making something happen for your baby's health, challenging hard work, ect ? I encourage you all mamas to do research before which decision to settle on. Which one is best for the health? It is possible & there are many options to try. Determination to do what is best for your baby.
4 years ago
kasjade
leah039 ... breast milk is much much better. women were created in order to breast feed their babies. formula was made for women who have trouble feeding regularly. you owe it to your baby to breast feed. and if you dont want to \"have to\" breast feed your baby then you shouldnt have had a child, sorry but you are an idiot. and if you dont want to always have a boob ready then there is such a thing as pumping. God mothers are becoming lazier and lazier.
4 years ago
leah039
i don't know. every keeps talking about how breastmilk is better but grew up on formula and so did everyone else i know and we are all fine. i still haven't decided if i am going to try it or just go straight to formula feeding. maybe i'll do a bit of both. i just don't like the idea of having to be committed to doing the feedings 24/7. what does it mean, i can never be away from my baby for more than 3 hours? not sure that's realistic. which formula is best? does anyone know?
4 years ago