Dads and Breastfeeding: They Matter Too

babel · April 7, 2022
Did you know that fathers also play a fundamental role in the correct establishment of lactation? Learn more about dads and breastfeeding.

When a child is born, both parents have a fundamental role. Although the mother lays down her body to give birth, the father actively participates in caring for his wife and their child. It can even have a huge influence on the success of breastfeeding. For this reason, in this article, we’re going to tell you everything about the key relationships between dads and breastfeeding.

We all know the many benefits that human milk offers to babies, as it not only provides all the nutrients they need, but also offers defenses against germs. In addition to this, breastfeeding favors the establishment of a close bond between mother and child, and it’s the father who ensures the necessary conditions for this attachment to take place.

Do you want to know how more about dads and breastfeeding? We’ll tell you everything below.

Breastfeeding: The best food for your child

Mother’s milk contains all the nutrients that a baby needs and also protects them from different diseases or infections. Breastfeeding exclusively for at least 3 months is very beneficial for the little one, although the World Health Organization recommends offering it for at least the first 6 months of life.

After that point, most children start complementary feeding, but mother’s milk continues to be the protagonist until the first birthday. Of course, keeping it going beyond that time prolongs the benefits for both the baby and the mother.

The benefits of breastfeeding for the baby

  • The baby doesn’t have to depend on caretakers washing or sterilizing bottles, as they drink directly from the breast.
  • It’s inexhaustible and free.
  • Exclusive breastfeeding reduces the chances of suffering from constipation more than when formula milk is included in the diet.
  • It protects babies against possible infections and diseases.
  • Mother’s milk adapts to the physiological needs of each stage of the child’s life.
A mother breastfeeding her son.
Breastfeeding is the best food for babies. But it also offers multiple benefits to moms.

The benefits of breastfeeding for the mother

Breastfeeding also has benefits for moms, as it reduces the chances of developing the following diseases:

Dads and breastfeeding, how can they help?

As we said at the beginning of the article, fathers also play a crucial role during breastfeeding, as they provide mothers with the help and support they need to carry out this enormous task.

Therefore, if you’re about to have a baby and want to know how to collaborate with the mother in this process, keep the following recommendations in mind.

Be a constant support

Breastfeeding takes time to adapt and also requires the mother to be calm so that the milk releases as it should be. If she’s nervous, this can negatively affect the start and success of breastfeeding.

Therefore, you can be the mother’s “helper” and take care of all the bureaucratic procedures of the hospital stay. And also, try not to bother visitors too much or have people in the room all the time. Once at home, you can take care of doing the housework so that the couple has that quiet time they need.

always be attentive

The mother may face difficult moments at the beginning of breastfeeding and require attention and support all the time. And no one better than you to understand and contain it. Therefore, avoid disagreements and arguments, as these could affect the woman’s mood. Whatever she needs, be around to give her a hand.

Learn as much as the mother about breastfeeding

Everyone being informed about breastfeeding is very important in order for it to be successful. For this reason, both of you should go to talks or consultations with nurses, midwives, or auxiliaries to find out everything before the birth. An informed father can more easily help the mother.

Provide support to the mother in the most complicated moments of breastfeeding

The path of breastfeeding isn’t easy for anyone and the father can play a fundamental role in getting through the difficult times that overwhelm mothers. Especially when breastfeeding isn’t going as it should, such as when mastitis occurs, there are suction difficulties, illness occurs, among other issues.

At these times, you must remain calm and calm to help the mother overcome difficulties.

newborn baby in the arms of mom and dad
A father’s role in breastfeeding is key to its successful establishment and maintenance.

Enjoy exclusive moments between father and child

Fathers also have to spend time with their babies in order to establish a special bond with them. You can change their diapers, take care of their bath, try to calm them when they have colic, or take a walk alone when mom rests.

About dads and breastfeeding, we can say that…

Dads and breastfeeding are compatible and their combination is key for any mom.

Although it’s the woman who provides the milk, the father is the one who ensures that the conditions are as favorable as possible for the mother-child bond to develop correctly.

Breastfeeding requires time and for the mother to be calm in order to adapt to the new role and enjoy it. So, if you’re expecting, remember that the father also plays an important role in this story.

  • Murphy, P. K. Los papás y la lactancia.
  • Martínez-Plascencia, U., Rangel-Flores, Y. Y., & Rodríguez-Martinez, M. (2017). ¿Lactancia materna o en pareja? Un estudio sobre las experiencias de reconfiguración de cuerpos, roles y cotidianeidades en madres y padres mexicanos. Cadernos de Saúde Pública, 33, e00109616.