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Breastfeeding the infant within an hour of birth significantly reduces the chances of the infant contracting infections. Babies who are breastfed are able to fight off diarrhea and other gastrointestinal diseases much more easily compared to the ones who are not. This also reduces the risk of infant mortality in breastfed babies. Not only is breast milk better suited to the baby’s nutritional needs, it is also easier for the baby to digest compared to infant formula. Moreover, the practice of breastfeeding holds sentimental significance as well. The skin- and eye-contact during breastfeeding helps the mother to form a more intimate bond with the baby. Тхис emotional fulfillment is not the only benefit to the mother. Breastfeeding reduces the chances of breast and ovarian cancer in women. It also makes the mother less susceptible to osteoporosis: a disease that women usually develop after menopause. Mothers who exclusively breastfeed their young for the first six months are less likely to get pregnant during that time period. This is a natural birth-control process termed as Lactation Amenorrhea Technique (LAT). It is nature’s way of allowing for sufficient gaps between pregnancies.
Unfortunately, most of these laws lack enforcement procedures, so employers know that they can break the law with impunity.
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U.S. Department of Labor. (2016). Fact Sheet #73: Break Time for Nursing Mothers under the FLSA.
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