Preemies, Other Babies Reap Benefits of Breast Milk


PLAINS TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) One of the biggest decisions facing new moms is whether to breast-feed or formula feed their baby. Weighing the pros and cons comes down to what’s best for mom and baby. Several health organizations recommend breast-feeding as the best option for babies.

From her hospital bed at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Thursday morning, Nancy Wiaterowski of Nanticoke breast-fed her two-day-old son, Easton. It’s something she’s done with only one of her other children. “I prefer the breast milk,” she said adding that the decision for her is a matter of nutrition. “It’s healthier for the baby than the normal formula that they sell in the stores.”

Research shows breast milk provides a nearly perfect mix of vitamins, protein and fat — the essentials to help baby grow. “That’s what you want is a happy and healthy baby, you know,” said Ms. Wiaterowski.

Geisinger Lactation Consultant Jill Martin, RN added that mother’s milk also provides a big boost to baby’s immune system. “There’s so many antibodies and immunities that a baby gets from mom’s milk that it just makes everything, the baby, so much healthier.” She said it’s especially vital for premature babies, or ‘preemies’, to have mother’s milk and overcome their earliest physical challenges in life. “Usually a baby who is taking all breast milk can usually go home about a week sooner.”

New mom Alejandra Amigon’s daughter, Melanie, arrived one month premature. The Wilkes-Barre woman bottle-fed her baby mother’s milk Thursday morning that she pumped beforehand. “Her skin tone color has come in and stuff like that. She’s gained a lot of weight, too,” said the first-time mom.

When Alejandra returns home with Melanie, she said she will try and nurse the baby but either way — nursing or bottle — she’s going to make sure that baby receives mother’s milk after witnessing the wonders of breast milk. “What, like, I started pumping out first would be my daughter’s life, like you know that would help her gain weight and get better and for her to go home soon and that’s what I’ve always wanted for her to come home.”

It’s important to note that studies show babies who are exclusively breast-fed for the first 6 months have fewer ear infections, respiratory illnesses and bouts of diarrhea.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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