Breastfeeding/Chest feeding is Not Free!
Breastfeeding/chest feeding is not Free!
How many times have you read or heard that breastfeeding is free?
Maybe you are a parent who have chose this method of feeding for your little one and felt a bit annoyed at the unexpected cost that breastfeeding/chest feeding can bring.
One of the main reasons why parents may choose breastfeeding over formula feeding is the notion that it is free.
But come on you all; is anything in this world free. Everything comes at a cost.
Breastfeeding/chestfeeding is not exempt.
Now I'm not saying that it is as expensive as formula feeding but it can come with a hefty price when it don't go as smoothly.
According to https://kellymom.com/pregnancy/bf-prep/bfcostbenefits/ it cost a family about an estimate of $800-3200 a year to buy formula which doesn't even include water, and baby bottles.
And we also know not all families qualify for WIC and even if they do not all the babies thrive on the formula that WIC provides.
So the cost can be expensive.
Now on the other hand let's look at Breastfeeding/ Chest feeding.
It does not coat to put the baby at breast/ chest. The action in itself is free. But breastfeeding doesn't always go as smoothly so to help improve the feeding journey it often requires some outside help. Let's not forget those who may choose to pump. Breastpump can cost between $30- 350 and the constant need for milk bags.
It's often recommended that when a person having difficulty breastfeeding/ chest feeding that they should hire a lactation consultant. They charge roughly about $150-300 per visit. Some insurances such as Tri care may cover the cost of a lactation consultant only if they are in network. So make sure you check with your insurances to be sure beforehand. There's also the cost of nipple shields which you will be suprised how easily it is to misplaced. They cost about $5 each. Than there's the optional convenient items such as nursing pillows, bras, tank tops, shirts, bottles, nipple creams and pads that comes at a cost. Let me also not forget to mention those who may depend on milk donations on a consistent basis. it is not totally free. Some donars may require a monetary donation or fee for time and reimbursement of bags.
"TRICARE now covers prescribed banked donor milk for infants with certain serious health conditions. Your baby and you must meet certain criteria for TRICARE to cover banked donor milk.
Covered banked donor milk comes from human milk banks accredited by the Human Milk Banking Association of North America (HMBANA
This blog is written to bring awareness that there is not just 1 way to feed a child. And although it cost nothing to put a child to a breast it still has potential added extra costs that can be expensive." Click on the link below for more Tri care milk don't coverage information. https://tricare.mil/CoveredServices/BenefitUpdates/Archives/4_2_19_TRICARE_Covers_Banked_Donor_Milk_for_Sick_Infants
When it really boils down to having to make that choice on how to feed that precious baby I recommend doing what is best for your family. And to seek professional advice from lactation consultant, pediatrician, and even a infant feeding specialist who have thorough knowledge on all infant feeding types.