Labour drugs may decline chances of breastfeeding

The drugs & painkiller which are given to women during labour may cut mother’s chances of breastfeeding her baby. These dugs are given to women to treat & protect bleeding after child birth, but these drugs are now linked with the falling rates of breastfeeding. All newborn children should breastfeed for first six months because it provides health benefits to both mother & baby.

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Experts have found that use of the clotting agents’ oxytocin or ergometrine was associated with a 7% decline in the proportion that started breastfeeding within 48 hours of giving birth. It is believed that the drugs may hinder a woman’s ability to naturally produce milk. It suggests that mother who has it, may need greater time or support from midwives if she wishes to breastfeed her baby.

The study also confirmed the link between high doses of injected pain relief & lower rates of breastfeeding. The main reasons cited for women failing to breastfeed are a lack of milk or babies that simply refuse to feed. It is see that two third of the women who did not receive drugs to prevent post-partum haemorrhage started breastfeeding their baby within 48 hours of giving birth.

But the proportion who received drugs reduced by 6 % among those given an injection of oxytocin, a hormone that plays an important natural role in labour & 7 % of women given an additional injection of ergometrine, given to address actual bleeding. 'The potentially life-saving treatments to prevent bleeding after birth must not be compromised on the basis of this study but further studies are required to establish ways to minimize any effects on breastfeeding rate,” said Dr. Sue Jordan.

“Women need more support to start breastfeeding soon after giving birth & this study adds weight to that,” said Rosemary Dodds, policy research officer for the National Childbirth Trust.

More: 4 Ideal postures for Breast-Feeding


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