These days, many working mothers have to juggle between breastfeeding and career demands.
According to Dr Suzanne Haynes, chairwoman of the subcommittee on breastfeeding for the Department of Health and Human Services, there are nearly 70% of employed mothers who have children under the age of three, with one–third back to work after three months of delivery, and two–thirds returning within six months.
Many new mothers believe that they must choose between staying at home to breastfeed their babies versus getting back to work.
But, these two requirements can co-exist quite peacefully, both for the benefit of the mother and her baby.
Here are some guidelines:
Plan in advance
You need to ask your employer or human resources department for policies on supporting new mothers to breastfeed before returning to work. This will give you the chance to think about the solution to any potential decision.
While some companies allow their employees certain periods of time to breastfeed, others may see this as a professional obstacle.
In case your employer refuses to let you breastfeed during working hours, you can ask your doctor to write a recommendation letter about the benefits of breastfeeding for both you and your newborn.
Place to breastfeed
Do not be afraid to ask when you need a clean and private room where you can pump your milk. If you do not have your own office space, you can ask to use a supervisor’s office.
Discuss how pumping breaks will fit into your schedule, usually 20 minutes every three to four hours.
Sometimes, because of the nature of your job, your location or your situation, you cannot pump your milk more than twice a day.
But do not worry as you will still maintain your milk production.
Buy a breast pump
A breast pump will help you maintain a stable supply of milk for your baby while you are at work.
Store your milk safely
You can pump into the same bottles throughout the day as long as you make sure to keep it chilled.
Connect with other mothers
You could connect with other working moms to get support and advice on breastfeeding.
Breastfeed your baby once you get home
As soon as you get home, breastfeed your baby.
What you need to prepare
You will need some equipment to pump your milk. These may include an insulated bag with cold packs, bottles or bags to store your milk, labels to note the date of your milk; breast pads to protect your clothes and conceal any leakage, and a picture of your baby if you like.
This article first appeared in hellodoktor.com. It was reviewed by Dr Duyen Le. The Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Source :-Free Malaysia Today