World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated every year from 1 to 7 August. The day aims to inform, raise awareness on themes related to breastfeeding.
Breastfeeding is crucial for both the new mother and the baby. Breast milk is believed to be the safest and healthiest food for the newborn.
With time, women are realising the goodness of breastfeeding, however, the process brings along a lot of challenges for new mothers, especially those who are working.
A lot of preparation and support from colleagues at the workplace and the family needs to go in before the new mother joins back work. A full-time working woman is able to breastfeed their child for a lesser duration.
At the workplace too, women have to pass through a lot of barriers. Roghayyeh Bayazi, Lactation Consultant at Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Pune, shared some common barriers to breastfeeding at the workplace are:
- The physical environment at work
- Lack of privacy
- Work schedule
- Jobs that required constant physical pressure
- Lack of managerial support
- Shyness in discussing needs with supervisor
- Travel commitments
- Inappropriate comments at work
- Multiple jobs
- Lack of family support
At the workplace, lactating mothers should be given flexible working hours. If possible, a dedicated nursing room should be given to working mothers for privacy and more comfort.
If the workplace is near home, women can go for a breastfeeding break too. This break time can also be used to express milk 2-3 times a day.
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Breastfeeding Tips For Working Mothers
The expert suggested breastfeeding in just an hour of delivering the baby. It is a good idea to give unrestricted and continuous breastfeeding to the newborn as it is the best way to stimulate breast milk production.
- The new mom should relax as much as possible because breastfeeding leads to stress, fatigue, and lack of confidence.
- Before returning to work, make sure you learn how to express breastmilk using a breast pump or by hand.
- Prepare your daily schedule as such that you are able to nurse the baby before going to work and after returning from work.
- Before going to bed, nurse your baby because at night, the milk production increases and can help you maintain a healthy breastmilk supply.
- When you have off days, breastfeed your baby as much as your can, it will help maintain a healthy breastmilk supply.
The expert shared that breastmilk production is more like a supply and demand process because the more the baby nurses, the more the milk is produced.
Every working woman will have a different working schedule and this will also affect milk production and storage.
Baby care is a full-time job and it is important to consult with a lactation consultant if you are a working woman. The expert will help you guide in milk storage and the baby's feeding schedule. You can plan to store breast milk after taking guidance from the expert.
Along with work, it can get a little difficult to manage a breastfeeding schedule for the baby, however, with prior planning and support from the family, it can be done right.
We hope this guide helps you maintain a healthy breastfeeding schedule for your baby. If you have any more questions related to breastfeeding, write to us on our Facebook page. For more such expert-backed health stories, stay tuned!