How Breast Feeding Improves Children’s Behavior

There are numerous studies on the health benefits of breast feeding, and here’s another one that supports my sleep-breathing paradigm, that your overall state of health is directly proportional to how well formed your jaws are as you age (and subsequently your breathing passageways).

Researchers from Oxford University in the UK found that infants who were breast-fed for at least 4 months had a 33% less chance of having behavioral problems by age 5. They speculate that breast milk has higher amounts of healthy fatty acids, growth factors and hormones that contribute to healthier brain development.

The one thing that all these studies fail to address is that bottle-feeding can cause malocclusion and jaw narrowing. The smaller your jaws, the less room there is for your tongue, which can cause breathing problems when the infant is placed on his back. Add muscle relaxation from deep sleep, and you’re going to deprive infants of quality deep sleep which is vital for proper brain development. With the addition of back sleeping in infants to bottle-feeding, it’s likely that this combination is a major reason for the significant rise in pediatric developmental problems that are so rampant these days.

If you have obstructive sleep apnea, were you breast or bottle-fed as an infant?

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2 thoughts on “How Breast Feeding Improves Children’s Behavior

  1. I have obstructive sleep apnea. I was breast-fed for 9 months. I have, as do my siblings and several first cousins, a palate abnormality that causes our sleep apnea.

  2. Ms. Day,

    There are various other structural reasons that can cause underdevelopment of the jaws. For example, in Down Syndrome patients, they have underdevelopment of the midface, which causes soft palatal redundancy with breathing obstruction. Bottle-feeding just makes things worse, on top of any other reason for dental crowding and jaw narrowing.