Most people are aware that breastfeeding has a great deal of benefits for the baby being breastfed and some people are even aware that there are benefits for the mother. However, most people don’t know that breastfeeding can benefit society as well.
Breastfeeding produces less waste than formula feeding
Most people in today’s world are concerned about their impact on the environment and make an effort to reduce the waste they are creating. Breastfeeding creates no waste, while the production, manufacture, distribution and consumption of formula creates waste. From broken bottles, old nipples, disposable bottle liners, empty cans and powder scoops, to the emissions from the factory creating the formula, the bottom line is that formula produces a great deal of waste. Even when compared to the waste created by breast pumps, and milk storage methods, formula still creates exponentially more.
Breastfeeding saves parents money
Breastfeeding saves parents a lot of money! On average, formula can cost up to $2500 per year for a single baby! By not having to spend this money on formula, this frees up the families finances a little more allowing them to pay other bills and expenses more easily. This can be especially helpful when the average American debt, excluding mortgages is $15,788.
Breastfeeding saves government-funded healthcare like Medicaid, money
Breastfeeding has been show to significantly reduce the instances of illness in babies who are breastfed. In 2008, 29.9 million children under the age of 18 were enrolled in the Medicaid program. By breastfeeding, a mother reduces her child’s chances of becoming ill in the immediate future, as well as preventing the child from developing certain medical conditions later on in life. This prevention saves taxpayers money by creating less of a need for the child to receive medical attention (such as when they are sick) that Medicaid would be paying for, thus saving the government, and taxpayers money.
Breastfeeding saves the WIC program money
A government-sponsored program known as WIC (Women, Infants and Children) that provides pregnant women, nursing mothers and children under five with free food and nutritional education and assistance would save $578 million dollars annually, if women enrolled in the program chose to breastfeed, rather than formula feed.
Insurance premiums could potentially be lower for everyone
Insurance premiums may be higher to help cover the medical expenses of infants who are sick more often, such as formula fed babies. If all babies were breastfeed, these premiums wouldn’t need to be so high to cover the medical costs of subscribers. This would result in reduced premiums for everyone.
Breastfeeding creates more productive workers
Because breastfed babies are sick less often, parents who work outside of the home are not required to miss as much work to care for an ill child when childcare services will not allow the child to attend. This leads to more productivity and reliability in the work place.
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