This year has been especially challenging for everyone with the outbreak of COVID-19. With a surge in cases right now, parents with babies born during the pandemic are more concerned than ever about the health and wellbeing of their children. When it comes to breastfeeding, you may be wondering if it’s safe to do so. The short answer is yes! You can start and continue to breastfeed during this time with some recommended safety measures.
COVID-19 is transmittable through close contact with an infected person when they cough, sneeze, or talk. Currently, the COVID-19 virus has NOT been detected in breastmilk. This tells us that breastfeeding can continue despite the rise of COVID-19 with many benefits to you and your child.
Benefits of breastfeeding during a pandemic
While there is not enough information available to know if breastmilk protects babies from COVID-19, we do know breastfeeding provides your baby with numerous protections against infectious diseases. It also releases the hormone oxytocin in mom’s body helping to relieve the excess stress and anxiety a pandemic can bring. Need another reason to breastfeed right now? It’s free and readily available – this is particularly helpful during a pandemic when so many are unable to safely work or make trips to the grocery store.
What to do if you have symptoms or test positive for COVID-19
In addition to the CDC guidelines, these steps will help you avoid spreading the virus to your baby:
Wash your hands before touching your baby
Wear a cloth face covering while feeding at the breast
Wash your hands before touching pump or bottle parts and clean all parts after each use
Connect with your pediatrician and a lactation specialist
Symptoms of COVID-19
If you or anyone in your home is exhibiting any of the following symptoms, contact your healthcare provider:
· Fever or chills
· Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
· Muscle or body aches
· New loss of taste or smell
· Sore throat
· Congestion or runny nose
· Nausea or vomiting
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Maintaining your supply while isolating
If you test positive for COVID-19, the current guidelines suggest isolating for a period of 10 days from the onset of symptoms. If you choose to isolate you can pump regularly to keep your supply up. Make sure you are washing your hands before handling any pump equipment and bottles and clean your pump according to the directions for your brand. Have a healthy caregiver feed your baby when possible, making sure they thoroughly wash their hands for at least 20 seconds before handling bottles.
For more information and guidance for multiple scenarios, visit the CDC website
Build your support team and have a plan in place for emergencies. Your support team can include:
· Friends and family
· Pediatrician & other healthcare providers
· Lactation consultant
· Postpartum doula
We can help you maintain your breastfeeding relationship safely as we now offer virtual support! You don’t have to go through these challenges alone, give us a call.
Oh- the weather outside is frightful, but the Winter Baby is so delightful!
That’s right, we’re going to be talking about Winter Babies! Some parents may be a bit worried about the logistics of having a baby during the colder months of the year, so we wanted to ease some of those concerns by highlighting the pros of having a Winter Baby.
Snowing? No need to worry! You can stay in with your baby and enjoy watching the snow fall while cuddling up with your little one! Throw on a movie or a show to binge and get comfy with your bundle of joy.
Baby will be ready to go out on Spring adventures
By the time Spring comes around, your baby will be more interactive and ready for Spring and Summer adventures with the family.
Holidays and sense of togetherness
The holidays are the staple of the winter season, and you’ll have an amazing gift to share the season with. Click here to read our blogpost on setting holiday boundaries with your family!
Pajama Season> Bathing Suit Season
After giving birth, you probably want to cuddle up in your pajamas and fluffy blankets. This is what winter is all about! We think pajama season is a hundred times better than swimsuit season!
Who doesn’t love food? Winter time is known for turkey, stuffing, mac n’ cheese, and all types of desserts (are you drooling yet?). There’s something about a plate of food, a cup of hot chocolate, and cuddles from a newborn that can bring a feeling of happiness to anyone.
Did you have a Winter Baby? If so, what are some of your favorite things about having your baby during the cooler months? Tell us on our Facebook! Also, check out our tips on surviving winter with a newborn to make sure you’re prepared for cold and flu season.
Tis the season of holiday gatherings and events, and we know how stressful the season can be for parents with a newborn. This season is full of love and family togetherness, but it can come at a price for newborns. With the weather getting colder and families spending most of the days inside, colds and flu are a cause for concern for many parents of newborns. Because of this, it’s important for new parents to set boundaries with family and friends during holiday get-togethers. A general rule we believe is important is the ‘No touching’ rule. It seems simple enough, but we all know that there will be at least one person that wants to believe they are the exception to the rule.
The grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc., will want to cuddle and kiss on their new addition to the family, and you might be a little more hesitant to tell them ‘no.’ We get it – they’re family! But the little bundle of joy you brought into the world needs you to be the one to protect them from possible exposure to the cold and flu. If you are having trouble thinking of how to lay down the law, here are some helpful tips:
Sick and Breastfeeding
If you or your breastfed baby do become sick, the best thing you could do is continue breastfeeding. The amazing thing about breastmilk is that its composition will change to help baby’s needs. For example, your body will know if you or your baby is sick and will increase the antibodies produced in the breastmilk. So, if the breastfeeding parent stopped breastfeeding they will not only hurt their supply, but they’ll also prevent the baby from obtaining those needed antibodies.
The holidays can be a tad stressful, but don’t let that stop you or your family from enjoying it! Set your ground rules, be sure everyone fully understands, and go have a little fun. If you have any holiday stories about your baby, we’d love to hear about it on our Facebook!
It’s getting colder and messier outside, and it’s time to start prepping for winter! If you just gave birth or are expecting to give birth in the midst of the cold months, there are some important things to keep in mind as it gets colder. Be sure to check out the links for more detailed information! Let’s begin!
Staying Around the House
When Going Out
If you or your baby gets sick
We hope that this little guide was helpful! If you suspect yourself or your baby have the cold or flu, please schedule an appointment with your pediatrician as soon as possible. If you feel as though your breastmilk supply is affected by the cold or flu, please schedule with an IBCLC as soon and possible to adjust your routine.
The milestones of growing up can be exciting for the whole family! The first time babies smile at us, grab onto us, crawl to us, and so much more! Growing up can be fun – but it can also be challenging and painful! We all have to deal with the physical aches and pains that come with growing. One of the pains every child and parent has to endure is teething. On average, many babies begin teething between four and six months old. If you are a breastfeeding parent, you probably realized that if your goal is to breastfeed for at least six months you’ll have to prepare for breastfeeding a teething baby. We know imagining a teething baby going in to feed can seem a bit intimidating, but no need to fear! We’ve got you covered on ways to work around the fuss of teething and we’re going to go over a crash course on breastfeeding a teething baby.
Signs of Teething and Effects on Breastfeeding
There is a chance that your baby may seem fussy and irritable days or even weeks before the first tooth shows up. Even though the teething process lasts for about 24 months, the pain is much less intense after the first few teeth come in (thank goodness!)
Some general signs of teething include: gnawing on toys and/or fingers, swollen gums, increase in drool, fussiness, and changes in sleeping and eating. Some signs you may notice if your breastfed baby is teething are: change in latch, breastfeeding parent’s nipples becoming sore from baby ‘gumming’ while feeding, biting while feeding, frequent feeding and baby refusal to nurse.
Ways of Dealing with Teething
First and foremost, if you notice your child wanting to breastfeed more often, that may be their best way for them to cope with the pain of teething. Children that are breastfed are likely to feed more frequently when they aren’t feeling well, as breastfeeding helps to reduce their stress. However, if breastfeeding does not help soothe them, or you are looking for ways to help with gnawing or biting, do not worry as there are plenty of other methods you can use to help.
Try 30 Minutes Before Feeding – Give your child something to gnaw on. Normally when children are teething, the first thing many parents look into are safe-to-chew toys for their child. One amazing brand, Nibbly Bits, has a whole line of teething jewelry and toys that are safe for babies to chew on! It is recommended that the toy not be completely frozen, as it could be too cold and hurt the baby’s gums. One great alternative to chewable toys can be a cold wash cloth – just be sure to supervise when your child is gnawing on anything for pain relief. Also, if the gums are not swollen you can massage your child’s gums with a finger dipped in cold water.
If you are still having problems, discuss with your doctor about using a baby pain reliever.
Dealing with sore nipples
If you are experiencing nipple pain due to a change in latch, your child gumming on your nipples while feeding, or damage from biting, and natural or over-the-counter remedies aren’t working, please visit with your lactation consultant and/or primary physician to go over possible options.
Ah, one of the many challenges of parenting. But don’t worry, you’ve got this! Before you know it, your child will be losing their first tooth and hiding it under their pillow for the tooth fairy. It may seem a bit stressful but one day we hope you’ll look back to the days of teething and realize how awesome you were for overcoming every obstacle!