Mothers who breastfeed following a caesarean section are less likely to experience persistent pain, according to international research unveiled in Switzerland.
At the Euroanaesthesia congress in Geneva at the start of June, a study was laid out showing that mothers who breastfed for at least two months after giving birth were three times less likely to experience persistent pain compared to those who breastfed for less than two months.
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The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) has called for further research, due to the study’s limited size, but indicated an ‘overwhelming body of evidence’ pointed to the benefits of breastfeeding for both mothers and babies.
Breastfeeding for the first six months of an infant’s life is the most appropriate choice for mothers, according to methods endorsed by the RCM.
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RCM director for England Jacque Gerrard said: ‘The NHS should be doing everything it can to encourage and support women to initiate breastfeeding and continue breastfeeding for at least six months. This should include support for women and their babies in the post natal period.
‘This is often very difficult as maternity services struggle with too few midwives meaning mothers often do not get the much needed post natal support and help needed to establish breastfeeding.
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‘Investing in services to improve breastfeeding rates will ultimately and importantly mean healthier babies and infants which will continue in young people and eventually adulthood and will ultimately, in the long run improve the public health of the wider population and also save the NHS money.’