What are the benefits of breastfeeding?

Assoc. Prof. Didem Öncel Yakar

Dr Öncel Yakar’s comments

One of the most important factors affecting an infant’s health is breastfeeding. Breast milk is the most ideal feeding method for newborns as it is safe, clean and contains vitamins, minerals and antibodies that protect them against diseases. In the first months of the newborn, it is sufficient to meet all the necessary energy and nutrients on its own. Breast cancer risk is reduced in breastfeeding women, and diseases such as obesity, diabetes and asthma are less common in breastfed children. Breastfeeding is a proven method for both maternal and infant health, especially in the first 6 months.

Breast tissue consists of milk ducts and mammary glands (lobuloalveolar secretory unit) in adipose tissue. These structures complete their development at different stages with different hormonal effects. Breast development is not completed in women who have not given birth. During pregnancy and breastfeeding, there are serious changes in the breast tissue with the intense hormonal effect, thus milk production and nutrition of the baby are provided by one of the most miraculous processes of nature. In terms of breast health, it is recommended that every woman over the age of 40 should have a breast screening annually. However, breast health follow-up protocols during pregnancy and breastfeeding are tailored to the individual.

Knowing these processes closely as both a female surgeon and a mother, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Didem Öncel Yakar answers your questions about breast health issues that arise during pregnancy and breastfeeding. May health be with us in every moment of our lives.