Breastfeeding during Pandemic

Mother’s milk is a natural complete food for the baby. It works as the first natural vaccine for the baby. So every baby deserves to be breastfed and WHO (World Health Organization) and UNICEF recommends 6 months of exclusive breastfeeding.

But what if the Mother is infected by Covid-19?

Due to pandemic, this thought always kept running through my mind. What if this happens with me? What about my son? He is still dependent on me. Not completely but breastfeeding is still a major part of his daily diet as he is not even a year old yet. How many more mothers out there who think about the same or are suspected. I’m sure them and many more Moms like me must be having these questions bothering them.
So I thought of doing a little research of my own to get answers to all my questions and more.

First and foremost thing is to maintain social distancing. If you are a mom-to-be or a mother of an infant/toddler, the best thing you can do is keep yourself away from the crowd. Prevention is always better than cure.

Can a Covid-19 infected mother breastfeed her baby?
According to WHO, Covid-19 does not transmit through breastmilk. A newborn baby or a feeding baby should definitely be breastfed. Early start in breastfeeding after birth helps in building the baby’s immunity by direct transfer of antibodies and essential nutrients through breastmilk.

How can a Covid-19 infected mother prevent transmission to her baby?
Whether a suspected mother or an infected one, proper precautions should be taken.
Wash hands and sanitize everytime before touching the baby. Wear a mask properly covering your nose and mouth and if possible a shield before holding the baby for feeding. Disinfecting frequently touched surfaces is a must. Baby’s clothes and other stuff should be washed and sanitized properly and frequently.

What if the mother is severely sick or is in medical emergency and is not able to feed her baby?
If the infected mother is severely ill and unable to breastfeed the baby, she can opt for expressing/pumping her breastmilk that a family member can spoon feed the baby. Bottle feeding probably should be avoided for newborns. Donor human milk is also a better option than formula milk and is highly recommended by pediatricians. Wet nursing is also something that is being considered as some Moms are not in favor of donor human milk which has been stored for a few days or more. Lastly is formula milk.

How can the partner and family members help the Covid-19 infected mother and baby?
During pregnancy and the child birth, the partner can be as involved as possible to build the confidence of the infected mother, of course with all the precautionary measures. After birth, the family members can help with the care giving part of the baby. If needed, the mother should be provided counselling by the gynaecologists, pediatricians and lactation experts to build her confidence in handling her baby without any concern.

Should there be social distancing maintained between the infected mother and the baby?
Absolutely not! With proper precautionary measures as mentioned earlier, social distancing need not be maintained. If done so, it might hamper the emotional well-being of the mother and the physical health of the child. Keeping baby and mother together helps in better temperature control of the baby and adjustments to the new world, less stress for the mother and better breastfeeding.
All these measures can be followed so that the mother and baby can enjoy their new beginning and also get all the benefits of liquid gold that the mother has to offer. After all, a healthy start will give a healthy future.

Disclaimer: These suggestions are for expecting/breastfeeding women who might be suspected/infected due to the pandemic. Please consult with your doctor before consuming anything or taking any steps.

This blog is a part of #LBWP – Let’s Blog with PRI, Season 2. You can also check out blogs written by my fellow bloggers Hansa and Avin.

Hosted By : Prisha Lalwani IG: @mummasauruss FB: /mummasaurus1

39 thoughts on “Breastfeeding during Pandemic

  1. I am sure new moms would find this post helpful in these stressful times. Good that you have given details on how to take precautions and yet be able to continue the breastfeeding.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is such an helpful article Seema. Thankfully, breastmilk doesn’t transmit covid to the babies. Hopefully by the time I deliver, covid situation mellows down too.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That’s a very informative and well drafted post. Thankfully BF doesnt transmit covid and new borns can reap the benefits of Breast milk from start. This is a very tough time for expecting and new moms and having right information about the new born care is very crucial.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great post and very useful for new moms. This is really great news that the virus didn’t transfer from breast milk. Thanks for sharing all needed safety measures. I m sure will help a lot breastfeeding moms.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You have shared important FAQs. These information is not only helpful but also very thoughtful. Your article is gonna be helpful for expecting and new moms. Good job.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is far most super interesting blog that I have actually read.. these are the common doubts in every new mother and couple of them would be grateful for you for this blog !

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Anyone who is in the family way must come to your blog and read the wonderful information you churn out month after month. Breastfeeding during a pandemic can raise a lot of concerns in a mother’s mind – mostly around hygiene and safety. You’ve addressed these concerns really well!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Very informative post for all the new moms. and the guidelines are given by the WHO have brought a big sigh of relief for all those moms who got infected with a deadly virus and more worried about their babies.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. You have shared some great tips for breastfeeding moms. This pandemic will get more overwhelming with time making people worry about various little things and this post will definitely help all moms struggling right now.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I had a pretty much similar discussion with a. friend recently who are going to start their family. Her dilemma was pregnancy during pandemic and later breastfeeding. I am going to forward your post to her.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I am glad you wrote a post on this topic, it is going to be really helpful for a lot of new moms out there. I have saved it and would be sharing this post with a couple of friends who are a new mom.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. This is so thoughtful of you for writing this post based on your research to help other mothers out there. I am sure these answers will help them prepare well & stay away from anxiety. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. This is such an informative post for new moms bringing in kids amidst this pandemic. This will help them quite a lot because I am sure most of them will be worried.

    Liked by 1 person

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