Sunday, 12 August 2012

Can working mothers breastfeed exclusively?

Can working mothers breastfeed exclusively?
Breastfeeding offers immense benefits to mothers and babies
Breast feeding month:
Breastfeeding, especially when done exclusively for the first six months, helps babies develop immunity against many diseases. Unfortunately, work prevents many mothers from exclusively breastfeeding their babies, writes Agnes Kyotalengerire

Real life experience
One would wonder why a woman would quit a well-paying job just to sit at home and nurse a baby. But Dorah Turinawe, a mother of three, did exactly that. Turinawe says she took the decision for a good cause.
According to Turinawe, her first two children often fell sick, so she was always in and out of hospital. Turinawe blames the children’s poor health on not exclusively breastfeeding them for six months. 
“When my maternity leave ended, I had to leave the children under the care of babysitters. I would never get an opportunity to run home during day to breastfeed the children because I lived far away from my workplace. Secondly, my job was so demanding that sometimes I got home at 8:00pm when the children were already asleep,” Turinawe recalls.
She says because she was never with the children, she missed out on a number of their milestones.
Turinawe felt that because she had faced many challenges with the first two children, she did not want to take chances with her third baby.
 When she reported back to work after her leave had ended, she realised the routine had not changed; reporting to work very early and leaving late with painful engorged breasts.
“The next week, I filed my resignation letter so that I could stay home to breastfeed my baby,” Turinawe narrates.
Although many people, including her friends and relatives, castigated her for the decision, Turinawe confesses it has paid off. 
Her baby Martha is healthier than her first two children. Since she chose to breastfeed exclusively, Turinawe says Martha has not suffered from conditions like diarrhoea, vomiting and pneumonia in the seven months of her life.

How organisations are supporting breastfeeding mothers
Although the work policy in support of breastfeeding permits maternity leave of up to 60 working days, these are insufficient to allow mothers to exercise exclusive breastfeeding for six months.
There is need for organisations to be more mother-friendly and consider the plight of working mothers. Below are initiatives different organisations have put in place to support working mothers to breastfeed.
Standard Chartered Bank
Harriet Musoke, the human resource manager, says
during maternity leave, breastfeeding mothers are allowed to spread out their leave. They can return  to work before their leave ends and work half day.
Also, each floor at the bank has a refrigerator, where breastfeeding mothers store expressed milk. In the course of the day, they take time off to express the milk and keep it in the fridge to take home for their babies.
This relieves mothers of breast engorgement and leakage and they are able to concentrate and perform better. 
National Social Security Fund,
Joyce Kasirye, the
acting human resource manager, says breastfeeding mothers are given one hour (flexy hour) to breastfeed their babies. A mother can choose to take the hour in the morning or lunch time or leave the office an hour earlier.
The breastfeeding hour contributes greatly to the mothers’ performance. The stress levels are managed and they are able to interact and care for their babies. Flexy hours and breastfeeding corners contributed greatly to the workers in her previous workplace in Nairobi. However, there is a cost implication and it calls for commitment. The organisation has to ensure good hygiene so that there is no disease outbreak.

International Baby Food Action Network
Esther Naluguza, the project officer, says mothers are given maternity leave of three months. They are allowed to  return with their babies to work. “Mothers have enough space in the office to lay their babies and breastfeed.
So a mother works in full view of her baby. This gives mothers satisfaction; they concentrate better.  It also enables mothers to breastfeed their babies exclusively (first six months). Besides, mothers do not have to worry about breast milk leaking since there is continuous breastfeeding.
Turinawe’s challenges are the common ones many working breastfeeding mothers are facing. 
Elizabeth Masaba, a breastfeeding counsellor with Ministry of Health, says unlike in the past, today most mothers are not the primary care-takers of their babies. The mothers are career-oriented and struggling to provide for their families. 
Also, some workplaces do not have policies that support breastfeeding. “The mothers spend most of the time away from their babies and as a result, suffer from stress of balancing work and the responsibility of caring for the babies,” notes Masaba.
She says some mothers are simply inclined towards the Western way of life. Masaba explains that because the mothers have money at their disposal, they prefer to buy breastmilk substitutes, for example, formula as opposed to breastfeeding the babies. 
According to the 2011 Uganda Demographic Health Survey report, 62% of children born in the country are exclusively breastfed (for the first six months). 

How can organisations improve the situation of working breastfeeding mothers?
Agnes Baku, a nutritionist and breastfeeding expert at Ministry of Health, says the best way to ensure working mothers breastfeed exclusively is by creating a baby-friendly environment at workplaces, for example, breastfeeding corners or giving mothers flexible hours to enable them breastfeed. 
“This will enable mothers to take time off to breastfeed their babies or express the milk to ensure continuous production of breast milk,” she explains.
Florence Nalubowa, a public nursing officer at Mulago Hospital’s lactation unit, says it is impossible for a mother who has been breastfeeding while on maternity leave and interacting with her baby to stay up to eight hours without thinking about her baby.
She says emptying the breasts either through breastfeeding or expressing the milk prevents breast engorgement, which can result into complications hence absenteeism from work. 
Nalubowa estimates that in a month, the lactation unit at Mulago Hospital receives about 50 mothers with breast engorgement, blocked ducts and sore nipples, all complications caused by the long time lag of not breastfeeding.
Benefits to the employer
Dr. Jolly Nankunda, a senior consultant paediatrician at Mulago Hospital, says studies show that working mothers who breastfeed perform better.
“A mother who expresses milk or breastfeeds gets physical relief from engorged breasts. Besides, she is emotionally-stable since she does not have to worry about her breast milk leaking. In addition, a mother who expresses milk will not stress about buying formula to feed her baby, while she is at work,” Nankunda says.
On the other hand, Baku says breastfeeding protects the baby against common illnesses and a baby who breastfeeds falls sick less often. 
“A mother will not be absent from work because the baby rarely falls sick,” she says. 
Nankunda says exclusive breastfeeding or expressing milk continuously works as a method of child spacing.
She says enabling working mother’s breastfeed or express milk reduces the risk of employees conceiving too soon after maternity leave, which affects their performance at the workplace. 
Express milk to ensure continuous supply
Exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months means feeding a baby on breast milk without giving additional foods such as water, tea, glucose, other animal milks, infant formula or porridge. But it is difficult for working mothers to ensure exclusive breastfeeding because most of time they are away from their babies. This is where expressing breast milk comes in handy.
How to express breast milk
Florence Nalubowa, a public nursing officer at Mulago Hospital’s lactation unit, says you can express milk using a breast pump. A mother should ensure that the components of the pump are sterile to avoid infection.
To express, position the opening of the pump firmly over the nipple to form an airtight seal. 
Then squeeze the bulb rhythmically until the milk comes out to fill the reservoir. Empty the reservoir when it is full and start again. Prices for breast pumps range from sh60,000 to sh200,000 depending on the brand.
Alternatively, a mother can express by hand. 
Elizabeth Masaba, a breastfeeding counsellor, advises to wash hands first. Then cup the breast in both hands with the fingers underneath and the thumbs above directing in a clean container. 
Squeeze the outer part of the breast between the fingers and thumbs gently and firmly. Repeat for up to 10 times, moving around the breast. This stimulates the flow of milk down the ducts to the milk reservoir in the areola. 
While holding the breast in one hand, place the tips of the thumbs and fingers of the other hand on either side of the areola. Press the thumbs and fingers back in the ribs then squeeze them together gently and rhythmically until the milk starts to flow.    

Breast milk storage
According to Geoffrey Babughirana, a breastfeeding expert and manager at East African Maternal Newborn and Child health project, a mother can keep the expressed milk in sterile containers in the refrigerator, a freezer or at room temperature. 
Babughirana says breast milk can stay fresh at room temperature for up to eight hours, 24 hours in a refrigerator and up to six months in the freezer. 
A mother who does not have a refrigerator can use bottle bags for storing breast milk. The bottle bags cost between sh15,000 and sh25,000 in shops around town.

Help save Rhythm FM OAP Meka Akerejola

 Meka Akerejola,Popular Rhythm FM Abuja On-Air-Personality who hosts the early morning show (The Morning Ride), urgently needs N7 million for a kidney transplant. The 31 year old graduate of Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, was diagnosed with high blood pressure in 2010 and after further tests was discovered to have a failed kidney.

Meka who is an orphan, requires a kidney transplant as soon as possible to survive. Please kindly donate the little you can afford as no amount is too small.

All financial donations can be made at Zenith Bank branches- Account number 2080664569, Account Name Akerejola Meka or Call Ojo Olawale on 07025096839. Thanks guys!

Help! Her husband's ex is harassing her

Help! My husband's ex is harassing me

Dear readers,
I have been married for eight years. From rumours, I recently discovered that my husband had a child with another woman before we got married. I confronted him about this child and he initially denied its existence. I kept pestering him until he finally confessed the truth. 
Of late, the other woman has started harassing me. She has attacked me on several occasions, although I keep ignoring her actions. The most disturbing thing is that my husband and this woman are still in touch. My husband is supposed to protect me from this woman, but he does not. 
I feel I got married to the wrong man. I want to walk out of this marriage, but I fear for my life and that of children. 
What should I do?

Kyle was warmly welcomed back to Vision Group in uganda

Kyle warmly welcomed back to Vision Group

New Vision Feature’s editor, John Eremu receives Kyle at Features desk . Photo by Kennedy Oryema
Big Brother star Kyle Duncan Tushabe received a warm welcome back to Vision Group amid an air of ululations, cheers, hugs and congratulatory gestures from his workmates.
The Ugandan co-representative in the just concluded edition of the annual Big Brother TV show made a striking appearance at his workplace in Kampala.
Klye Duncan  chats withe Saturday Vision editor Hilary Bainemigish(Dr. Love ) at New Vision offices.
Photo by Kennedy Oryema
Kyle co-hosts a TV show, Skizzy on Vision Group’s Urban TV. He is also a writer with the New Vision’s Features desk.
“I can’t wait to get back to my show, Skizzy. I’m sure my fans have been missing me,” said Kyle.
“I have a lot more for them this time but most importantly am thanking them for keeping me in the Brother House.”
Dressed in a black T-Shirt and dark Jeans, revealing his characteristic flair and swag, the 25-year-old spent the whole 90 days in the South Africa-based house together with five other finalists.
Swagg editor Tony Achidiria having a moment with Big brother star Kyle  Duncan . Photo By Kennedy Oryema
He beat 30 other participants in the game show that had a USD300,000 prize stake, to finish fifth best in the grand finale last Sunday.
Despite coming short of the prize money, there was hardly a sense of gloom as Kyle’s workmates welcomed him back from the show where he won continental fame. 
The mood was all celebratory, with most of his colleagues pointing out that even if he didn’t win the jackpot, he was still a winner by having made it to the finale.
New Vision senior writer Carol Kasujja embracing Big brother star Janette Lutaaya in the news room on 9th August 2012. Photo by Kennedy Oryema
Kyle’s Ugandan partner in the show, Janette Lutaaya also made presence at the Vision Group offices. She was the last of the housemates to be evicted before the grand finale.
One of Kyle’s workmates said he can build on his newly-gained fame to realize his aspirations in the media and entertainment sectors.
“I am happy to be back home,” an excited Kyle said.
Kyle’s appearance started in the newsroom, then he went on to the Urban and Bukedde TV studios, drawing quite an attention from especially the ladies who could hardly let him pass without a hug.
But Janette seemed shy and timid, somewhat reminiscent of her first days in the South African game show. But she would later open up into a totally different character, as earlier promised before the start of the show.
She declined to tour the entire Vision Group premises with Kyle and instead met a few editors at their desks.

Australia: Naked Fisherman Saved from Sharks

Fisherman has narrow escape after boat sinks in shark-infested waters 50km off coast of Western Australia

naked australia fisherman rescuedfisherman had a narrow escape when his boat sank in shark-infested waters 50km north of Jurien Bay off the coast of Western Australia. The naked man desperately trod water for 20 hours before he was rescued. A film crew aboard a Channel Seven News helicopter were the first to spot him and were horrified to realise that he was only 20 metres from a hammerhead shark that was circling him
In a dramatic race against time, five search and rescue planes and five boats attempted to pluck the man out of the water before he could be attacked.
One plane dropped a life raft for the unnamed 49-year-old man but in his exhausted condition he was not able to swim to it. With the shark still close, a rescue boat managed to reach the fisherman and get him to Royal Perth Hospital where he was being treated for exposure and hypothermia.
The fisherman had gone out with two people, believed to be his nephews, on a fishing trip from Leeman, 270km north of Perth on Thursday. One of his companions was found dead; the other is still missing.
A police spokesman said, “We haven’t spoken to the survivor yet and until then we don’t know what happened.”
Channel Seven News filmed the discovery of the struggling fisherman in the water and his rescue with broadcaster Grant Taylor keeping up a runing commentarty throughout.
“He’s stark naked … just struggling to swim and float on his back and try and keep his head out of the water,” he told viewers. “He keeps waving at our chopper trying to get us to come down and help him but there’s nothing we can actually do.”

Athlete Dies During Competition!

athlete dies
An athlete died Saturday while competing in the Ironman U.S. Championship’s swim portion, organizers said.
The competitor apparently “experienced distress” during the 2.4-mile swim in the Hudson River, which separates New York and New Jersey.
The weekend triathlon is the first such championship in the New York metropolitan region.
“We are deeply saddened to confirm the death of an athlete at today’s Aquadraat Sports Ironman U.S. Championship,” said Emily Vicker, a spokeswoman for Rubenstein Communications, which represents the competition.
The athlete was declared dead at a nearby hospital.
Authorities say the cause of death is unknown; they are awaiting autopsy results.
“On behalf of all of us in the triathlon community, we mourn his death and send our condolences to his family and loved ones,” said Vicker.
Competitors followed the swim portion of the contest with a 112-mile bike ride and then a 26.2-mile marathon.

Brandy Plays Peace Maker Between Brother Ray J And Kim Kardashian

Ray J recently set Twitter ablaze after he took a shot at ex-girlfriend Kim Kardashian, but now his sis, Brandy, has come into the picture, asking lil brother to play nice.
The singer’s shot at his ex-boo resulted in over 30,000 retweets by Twitter users, prompting Ray J to send out an apology soon after. However, it looks like Ray J’s u-turn was probably influenced by his sister as Brandy noticed the shade, and jumped into the debate, tweeting to her brother:
”@RayJ Brother, be nice:) Love you!!!! My show went really well in DC!!! Wish you were there:(”
No matter how big Ray J gets, Brandy will always be there to make sure he knows between right and dead azz wrong. Big sis had to check her brother, keep it cute or put it on mute!

Student Dies Right After Tweeting !!!

student tweets and dies

Ariane Noelle Patterson, a Gardner-Webb University student, collapsed in school and died after ironically tweeting “Thank you God for another year of life” an hour before! It is reported that the 21-year-old suffered from complications of systemic lupus erythematous, which caused a heart attack. This statement was released by the university:
“We are deeply saddened and in shock by this monumental loss. We pray for Ariane’s family and friends during this difficult time, and hope they will somehow find peace in the midst of this tragedy. No words can truly express how we collectively feel as a university during this time.”
RIP Ariane, she was clearly thankful for life!