HomeHealthArchivesJan 2008

 

 

Help for Tiny Ears

Can breastfeeding prevent ear infections?

To a degree, yes, say investigators at the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center. Normally, six of 10 babies get ear infections in their first year. The Arizona researchers found that when babies are breast-fed exclusively during their first four months, the incidence of ear infections is cut in half.

What's the connection? One theory blames frequent infections on the reclining position bottle-drinkers often assume. That allows formula to leak through the back of the throat into the inner ear, allowing bacteria to multiply there. Another holds that antibodies in breast milk help reduce infections.