Jakarta (ANTARA) – The National Population and Family Planning Agency (BKKBN) officially launched progestin, a safe birth control pill for nursing mothers for breastmilk production to support exclusive breastfeeding that can prevent stunting in children.
“The pill only contains progesterone. Insya Allah (God willing), it does not inhibit breast milk (production), so once the lochia period is complete, mothers can consume this pill to support their breastfeeding,” BKKBN Head Hasto Wardoyo explained at the pill launch event in Nganjuk District, East Java, on Wednesday.
Wardoyo noted that by breastfeeding, mothers can produce ample breast milk that provides optimum nutrition to their babies.
It is because when breastfed, a baby sucks breast milk from its mother’s breasts. The process, which Wardoyo called an injection, sends a signal to the mother’s brain to release two hormones: prolactin and oxytocin.
According to Wardoyo, prolactin helps mothers produce milk in large quantities, while oxytocin helps ease the release of breast milk that was produced.
“Breastfeeding has huge benefits because it automatically acts as a natural birth control,” he added.
A breastfed baby is also protected from stunting in addition to being provided rich nutrition that enters its body, especially in its first one thousand days of life.
If mothers stop breastfeeding, the two hormones cannot be released, thereby disrupting the production of breast milk and resulting in infants likely experiencing nutrient deficiencies, he highlighted.
Hence, Wardoyo advised mothers to breastfeed their babies at least once in three hours. In addition, he recommends that mothers use both breasts to breastfeed, so the quantity of milk in both breasts is balanced.
“For instance, breastfeeding through the right breast for a limited period of time. A baby can get hungry in three to four minutes. Thereafter, breastfeed it (through the left breast) for five to six minutes, so it is balanced,” he elaborated.
Hence, Wardoyo also expressed optimism that through regular breastfeeding, no other children would be born stunted.