LAST UPDATED: JANUARY 30, 2018
Does Wearing Braces Affect Lactating Mothers?
There is no more joyful time in a mothers life than their child’s first months of life. The stress of bearing a child is behind you and you are able to touch, smell, and kiss your perfect little package. Though, as every mother knows, the worries are just beginning. It is a mother’s duty to protect both the baby and herself. A breastfeeding mother must take care of herself because her baby’s health is dependent upon her health. Everything they ingest and everything that they do to their bodies has an effect on the child. Even medical procedures must be carefully considered by the parents. The question has been raised as to whether or not wearing braces will have an effect on a mother’s lactation. The best way to find your answer to this question is to consult with a licensed orthodontist. The following paragraphs will explore the answer to this specific question and aims to aid in your discussion with a professional.
Why Is Breastfeeding Important?
Nourishment and Immune Protection
The milk that a mother can provide for their baby is designed to satisfy all of the child’s needs. Breastfeeding is natural and evolutionarily designed to promote health throughout the child’s life. It is naturally infused with every nutrient that the baby needs throughout the first six months of life.
It also contains disease-fighting substances that help the baby fight diseases, such as;
- stomach viruses
- ear infections
Breastfeeding can not guarantee protection from these illnesses. However, studies have shown that they happen less often and less severely in breastfed children.
Breastfeeding is the baby’s first lesson in nourishment. The baby learns to eat until he or she is full. This has proven to limit the development of an eating disorder in the child. Breast milk also contains less insulin than formula. Insulin promotes the retention of fat. In contrast; formula-fed babies tend to gain more weight in the first weeks of life. This is linked to obesity later in life.
A number of independent researchers have found a connection between breastfeeding and increased cognitive abilities. Breastfed babies typically have higher I.Q scores and more developed vocabularies. Additionally, research has shown that breastfeeding helps preterm children’s mental development.
Breastfeeding sparks one of the deepest possible emotional attachments between two humans. The mother and baby bond in a unique way that promotes emotional health for both.
What Are the Benefits for the Mother?
Mothers also benefit from breastfeeding. Mothers who breastfeed are less likely to develop postpartum depression. Nursing also triggers the release of oxytocin, which promotes relaxation. This helps a mother deal with the stress of caring for a newborn.
Data has been collected that indicates that breastfeeding lowers the risk of cancer for a mother. The research indicates that the best way to avoid breast cancer is to nurse for at least a year. The mechanism of this process is unknown but researchers believe that it has to do with the suppression of estrogen.
These benefits illustrate how important breastfeeding is for the mother, the baby, and the entire family. If breastfeeding is an option then it should be attempted. Its benefits are extensive and give your baby a plethora of advantages.
Can I Breastfeed if I wear Braces?
A mother should avoid anything that affects their milk production. The idea that wearing braces effects lactation has been around for as long as orthodontics has. Braces do not affect a mother’s milk production and are completely safe for both pregnant and nursing mothers. There are no chemicals in standard orthodontic braces that have been observed to have an effect on milk production.
Breastfeeding is one of the most important elements in the life of a mother and child. Babies who are nursed, instead of fed formula, carry its benefits throughout their lives. They are less susceptible to infections, SIDS, meningitis, and viral illnesses. Breastfed children also have been observed to have intellectual advantages. Their I.Q scores tend to be higher and they have more extensive vocabularies.
They also to have healthier eating habits and fewer occurrences of eating disorders. A mother should try to breastfeed if possible. Mothers who have braces often worry that their braces will cause lactation problems. This has not been observed to be true and orthodontists advise that braces are safe for nursing mothers and will not affect milk production.
As always, the best way to answer your questions and assuage your worries is to consult a professional orthodontist. Their years of study and extensive training make them the most reliable resource for dental and orthodontic information.
Fix Your Smile Today
Contact Gorton & Schmohl Orthodontics today to set up your consultation. There’s no reason to put off a visit to our helpful team of professionals. It is our goal to help you make the most of your smile.
When your teeth are aligned properly and your jaw is flowing smoothly, you will find more reasons to flash those pearly whites every day. Let Gorton & Schmohl Orthodontics be your partner in good oral hygiene.
Does Wearing Braces Affect Lactating Mothers?
Gorton & Schmohl Orthodontics
900 Larkspur Landing Circle, Suite 200,
Larkspur, California 94939
Dr. Jasmine Gorton, a Bay Area native, graduated from UC Berkeley with Bachelor degrees in both Integrative Biology and Social Sciences and then went on to graduate from Harvard with honors for her Doctorate in Dental Medicine.
She continued her education at UCSF with a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Growth and Development, followed by an Orthodontic Residency with a Master of Science in Oral Biology.
She is Board Certified in Orthodontics. She received the American Association of Orthodontics Award for Craniofacial Research and the Harvard Odontological Society Award for Excellence in Research. Her work on preventing decay around braces has been published in the American Journal of Orthodontics.