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Presentation Information

Dr. Theresa Nesbitt

Breastfeeding: Instinct or Skill?

  • Speaker: Dr. Theresa Nesbitt , MD, RN
  • Presentation Type:
  • Duration: 75 Mins
  • Credits: 1.25 CERP, 1.25 Nursing CEU, 1.25 CME, 0.125 Midwifery CEU

Human newborns are unique among the primates in that they are born in a neurologically immature state. This lack of sensorimotor capabilities mean that they have special breastfeeding challenges during the first month postpartum. For humans breastfeeding is innate in the newborn but is mostly a learned behavior or skill in the mother, a skill that is naturally learned via observation. Natural breastfeeding is both easy to learn and teach and employs a simplified approach to enhancing newborn motor control thereby avoiding the most common problems of the first few weeks postpartum, nipple pain, difficulty latching and concerns about milk production in most newborns.