Breastfeeding Argument Analysis Essay

Submitted By alyssajanine
Words: 2539
Pages: 11

Alyssa Washington
Ms. Abraham
Argument Analysis
6 Dec. 2012
Breastfeeding Controversy:
Why do Some Women Choose Not to Breastfeed? It’s no secret that a women’s breast are perceived by our society as sexual objects, but that is not what breast were intended to do, at least not all of the time. When a women gets pregnant her breast react to create nourishment for the infant growing inside of her. Once the mother has given birth to the infant a substance called colostrum is released from the breast which gives the infant all the nourishment it needs until the milk in the breast come in a few days later. From there on the mother is able to feed and nourish her infant with the milk her body produces. Breastfeeding is the most natural way to nourish an infant, and the history of breastfeeding versus formula feeding has changed immensely over the years. “Prior to the early 1900s, breastfeeding was the only source of infant nutrition” (Parfitt 1). There was no such thing as formula and if a women was unable to nurse, “they found suitable “wet” nurses or another nursing mother to feed their infants” (Parfitt 1). Then during the early 1900s the formula industry began to make way into our society (Parfitt 1). With the uprising of the formula industry also came written literature about formula released from the industry (Parfitt 1). Women began relying on the information from this written literature to nourish their infants as apposed to recent history of getting information from their own mothers and family members (Parfitt 1). Then in 1921 The Sheppard-Towner Act was created to help raise awareness of education and preventative care for new breastfeeding mothers (Parfitt 2). By 1929 the male dominated American Medical Association had gone against the efforts of The Sheppard-Towner Act of 1921 and reduced women to not breastfeed due to potential medical problems (Parfitt 2). From the 1930s on the decrease in breastfeeding women continued on all the way through the 1950s due to a lack of information and guidance on breastfeeding that was available, as opposed to the over abundance of information on formula (Parfitt 2). Then in 1956 a group called The Le Leche League was organized which promoted the health benefits of breastfeeding for mother and baby (Parfitt 2). Then in the 1960s there was a huge change and women began to want to feel empowered and in control of there bodies again (Parfitt 2). As a result, a study done in 1984 showed that “61% of infants were breastfed at one week of life” (Parfitt 2). Now, in 2012 women are still empowered to be in control of their bodies and their decision on how to raise their child, but less than 50% of women actually breastfeed their children. Breastfeeding is so important for the health of the mother and the baby, so it’s baffling as to why some women don’t even try to breastfeed their children when most are fully capable of it. Women who are able to breastfeed should choose to breastfeed or pump breast milk for their baby because not only is it the best nourishment for their baby but it is what is best for the mother as well. It’s not always going to be easy and yes it is demanding at times, but it is proven to be best for baby so why not put in a little extra effort. First, breastfeeding has been shown in studies to help protect infants against sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). The reason why they believe this is because “breast-fed infants are more easily aroused from active sleep, which may protect them from sudden infant death syndrome” (Horne 1). A study done on this showed that infants that “died from SIDS had fewer body movement and fewer spontaneous arousal from sleep than infants who did not die”
(Horne 1). A study was done on 43 healthy infants during the first 6 months of their life (Horne 2). Breast-fed and formula-fed infants were divided into two groups (Horne 2). The “study found that breast-fed infants were more easily aroused during active sleep than formula-fed