Working and Breastfeeding Tips

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Bottle Training Ahead of Time

Before going back to work and leaving your baby at the sitter's or at daycare for the first time, you may want to introduce them to the bottle first, just so that transferring to the bottle will not be an additional shock to their sense of security. It shouldn't take too much time to pump and feed with the bottle once a day so that it is not completely new to your baby, and nurse the rest of the day. This will also help you and your breasts get used to the pump quicker too.

Are followup formulas necessary?

Followup formulas (artificial milk for infants over 6 months of age) are specially adapted to the needs of infants 6 to 12 months of age

Followup formulas are completely unnecessary and are specially adapted to the needs of the formula companies' profit margins. They also are part of a marketing strategy which tries to get around restrictions on the advertising of artificial baby milks directly to the public (widely disregarded in any case). In Europe now, there are special formulas available for the toddler (1-3 years of age).

Can giving a breastfed baby a bottle do any harm?

But getting the baby to take a bottle surely won't hurt

The occasional bottle, when breastfeeding is going well, will not hurt. But if the baby is getting several bottles a day, on a regular basis, and, your milk supply decreases because the baby is nursing less, it is quite possible that the baby will start refusing the breast, even if he is older than 6 months of age.

Does a baby need to drink milk while it´s mother is working?

Babies need to drink milk when the mother is not at home

Three or four good nursings during a 24 hour period, plus a variety of solid foods, gives the baby all he needs, nutritionally. He/she does not need any other type of milk when you are at your outside job. Of course, solid foods can be mixed with expressed milk or other milk, but this is not necessary.

What can I do to prepare for a return to work?

Maternity Leave

Take full advantage of your maternity leave to establish a good supply of milk before going back to work. This is critical to breast feeding success. The longer you can take at home the better.

Does a baby need forumula if its mother is working?

If the baby is to get milk other than breastmilk, it needs to be artificial baby milk (infant formula) until the baby is at least 9 months of age

If the baby is breastfeeding a few times a day and getting fair quantities of a variety of solid foods, infant formula is neither necessary nor desirable. Indeed, babies who have not had infant formula before 5 or 6 months of age often refuse to drink it because it tastes pretty bad. If you want to give the baby some other sort of milk, homogenized milk is acceptable at 6 months of age, as long as it is not the baby's only food.


How to Rent a Pump

The best place to rent a breast pump if you need one temporarily or simply do not want to buy one just yet is from the hospital where you child is born. Hospital staff and lactation specialists will assist you in choosing the pump that best suits your needs. Renting instead of buying at first will allow you to switch pumps if you do not like the first one you use. You can also request that your doctor write you a prescription for a pump which can save you the sales tax and possibly help you get reimbursement from your insurance company.


Build Your Supply Before Returning to Work

Many breastfeeding mothers will return to work within a few months of giving birth and have no intention of quitting nursing. Bravo! Those mothers have probably developed a way to fit their pumping breaks into their busy schedule. This will keep you bringing home enough milk to feed the baby the next day. However, what you might not think of ahead of time is what your child will eat the first day you are back at work. While on maternity leave, you should be pumping as you can to build up a small supply to feed your child the first day you are gone, but also a few extra bottles for the days you arrive later than expected or just in case. If you do not, and your child has never before had formula, they may refuse to eat, have an upset stomach or take your absence even more harshly.


Do Not Disturb

Regardless of where the place is that your employer has secured for you to pump in private, your co-workers may not be very aware of the situation or simply not used to a certain room bring unavailable to them. You can either bring or create a Do Not Disturb sign to attach to the doorway. Then, no unsuspecting co-worker will have any excuse for walking in on you and you can still be sure that custodial workers who enter many places that others do not, will also not enter during your designated times.


Know Your Rights

Each state has a set of rights for pregnant and nursing mothers regarding discrimination at the workplace. La Leche League, big proponents and supporters of nursing mothers, posts these laws verbatim on their website so that you may know what you are entitled to based on your state of residency. Visit to find your state and its laws that pertain to you.


Pumping Breaks

Before leaving for maternity leave, make arrangements with your supervisor, or simply discuss what your needs will be when you return in regards to nursing. You are protected by law as a nursing mother. This protection means that your employer is required to allow time for you to express milk regularly in order to continue nursing your child. However, it is not advised to go in demanding a certain amount of down time. You need to take a good look at your current schedule first and decide how many breaks you will need and what length of time. Work out a schedule you think will not take away from your current schedule that will include these breaks as a suggestion. Also, determine a prospective place to pump. If you are in a cubicle you won't have enough privacy. You will likely need an electrical outlet and an enclosed room. You will also need to determine where you will store your milk for the day. Doing this ahead of time will save you a lot of stress your first day back at work when you will be struggling to overcome leaving baby for the first time.

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