EC and Breastfeeding
How EC Helps Breastfeeding:
*Helps baby stay on the breast. Breast refusal is a common sign of
needing to eliminate but it is often confused with breastfeeding
problems such as overactive letdown, over-supply and low milk supply.
Think about how difficult it would be to eat and drink if you needed
to go to the bathroom: it is the same with your baby. If your baby
starts latching and un-latching, commonly referred to as, "popping on
and off" try offering the potty or toilet.
*Makes it easy to see output. Practicing EC gives a breastfeeding mom
confidence because she has a better sense of her baby's eliminations.
Disposable diapers are so absorbent that it can be hard to tell how
much a baby is eliminating. We can't see how much milk is going in,
but with EC we can see how much is coming out.
*EC enhances pathogenic memory. EC aids in the transmission of
important biological information through the mother's exposure to her
baby's eliminations in order for her body to make milk with the proper
composition of antibodies. (Source: Milk, Money, and Madness: The
Culture and Politics of Breastfeeding)
*Breastfeeding is more efficient than artificial feeding- Breastmilk is digested better and used more efficiently by the body therefore the baby produces fewer eliminations.
How Breastfeeding Helps EC:
*Babies often eliminate while nursing so this can be an "easy catch".
*Breastfeeding helps keep babies relaxed so they can eliminate better.
This is especially true for a co-sleeping baby at night because nursing can either keep baby asleep enough so that he doesn't need to
pee (babies usually don't pee in their sleep) or will keep baby relaxed enough to pee while nursing.
*Colostrum is a laxative and helps your baby with his first bowel movements
*Breastfed babies are unlikely to be constipated or have diarrhea
*Breastfed babies are less allergic. Food allergies can cause a
multitude of digestive disturbances that disrupt eliminating. Breastfeeding reduces this.
*Breastfeeding relaxes mothers. EC is easier if you stayed relaxed and
breastfeeding helps accomplish this.
*Breastfeeding is more efficient than artificial feeding. Breastmilk
is digested better and used more efficiently by the body therefore the
baby produces fewer eliminations.
*Breastfed babies' eliminations smell better- It is believed that
exclusively breastfed babies' eliminations are not unpleasant smelling
so that their mothers will not be put off by them, this is an added
bonus for EC.
How EC Is Like Breastfeeding:
* You look for cues. When you breastfeed "on cue" you look for signs
that your baby is hungry and offer your breast. When you practice EC
you look for signs that your baby needs to eliminate and offer the
potty. You could say it is "pottying on cue".
*Skin-to-skin helps. Skin-to-skin contact helps both breastfeeding and
reading your baby's EC signals. Skin-to-skin contact can help increase
your milk supply and your number of catches.
*Babies are active participants. Both EC and breastfeeding are cooperative. With EC your baby can purposely signal his elimination needs, show preference for a toileting place, and signal "no". With breastfeeding your baby may indicate interest, frequency, and can control the flow of milk.
* Both breastfeeding and EC are less expensive than using formula and
*Both foster communication
*Both reduce colic or unexplained fussiness.
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