The Post Pregnancy Family Planning (PPFP) project is supporting the Lagos State Government to increase modern contraceptive uptake amongst women within the post-pregnancy period while urging them on health benefits of exclusive breastfeeding.
The project is currently being implemented across 184 private health facilities within 19 Local Government Areas, listed its key interventions as demand generation, and service delivery components with data use through research, monitoring.
This was the PPFP’s submission in a media release it issued on Tuesday to join the world in celebrating the breastfeeding week 2020.
With this year’s theme ‘Support Breastfeeding for a Healthier Planet’, PPFP has reminded mothers that breastmilk provides several benefits to the mother and baby.
The project also said breastmilk offers the most nutritious and affordable infant meal, which the infant formula lacks.
“Breastfeeding supplies all the essential vitamins and minerals to babies in a form that can easily be absorbed, and has antibodies which helps to help fight infection,” it adds.
“Evidence had shown that breastfed babies are healthier, and more likely to have fewer hospital visits.
“WHO recommends that babies should be exclusively breastfed for the first six months, without food or water, the project said exclusive breastfeeding prevents ovulation which means an egg is not released each month, therefore, pregnancy is not likely to occur.”
“However, if exclusive breastfeeding is not properly practised, ovulation will take place, and can lead to pregnancy.”
Exclusive breastfeeding, it continued, can be used as a form of family planning method if practised as Lactational Amenorrhea Method (LAM) fulfilling three criteria: if a woman has a baby less than six months old; if her menstrual bleeding (menses/period) has not returned; and if she breastfeeds her baby exclusively (day and night).
Adding, PPFP urged mothers to visit any registered hospital with the green dot logo to speak to a family planning provider and get enlightened on other family planning methods a woman can use whilst breastfeeding.
Meanwhile, WHO and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) called on governments to protect and promote women’s access to skilled breastfeeding counselling, a critical component of breastfeeding support.
Part of the benefits is that breastfeeding provides every child with the best possible start in life; it delivers health, nutritional and emotional benefits to both children and mothers; and forms part of a sustainable food system.
However, PPFP has acknowledged that while breastfeeding is a natural process, it is not always easy, hence, mothers need support – both to get started and to sustain breastfeeding.Follow us on social media