We all are now very well aware of the fact that COVID-19 spreads through close contact between people when the infected person sneezes, coughs or talks. The WHO recommends that if the mother is tested positive, she can continue breastfeeding her baby. The virus has not been found in breast milk. Breastmilk is a boon for babies as it helps the baby to fight against all types of infections.
Breastfeeding is considered safe even when a mother has other viral diseases such as influenza. Mother’s milk has all the important antibodies that can prevent the baby from getting sick with COVID-19.
Mother’s milk is wonderful for babies. It saves them from many infections. Babies who are breastfed are less likely to contact severe respiratory problems if they get sick. It is considered great for mothers too.
Breastfeeding is great for the mother, too. The hormones released in the mother’s body during breastfeeding help promote wellness and in relieving stress and anxiety.
If you are a mother who is ill with COVID-19 and has a baby to feed, here are some precautions and practices that you must follow while breastfeeding. New mother’s must know about such tips. Read Indian Mom Blogs regularly for all kind of child parenting tips.
Best Breastfeeding Practices for COVID-19–Positive Mothers
● Practice good respiratory hygiene while feeding your baby. If you have lung infections and symptoms like breathlessness, use a medical mask while feeding.
● Keep your baby six feet away when you are not feeding him.
● Wash your hands regularly and thoroughly with hand wash, soap or use a good sanitizer before and after breastfeeding your baby.
● Routinely disinfect furniture, doors, windows, and frequently touched surfaces of your home.
● If you are severely ill and can’t take care of your baby or continue to breastfeed him directly, you can express milk and provide it to your infant safely.
If You Are COVID-19–Positive and Choose to Express Breast Milk
● Always use your breast pump, the one that hasn’t been shared with anyone else.
● Always wear a mask, even while expressing breast milk.
● Wash your hands properly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before you touch the breast pump or bottle parts and before expressing breast milk.
● Follow the instructions given on the breast pump packaging for proper pump cleaning after each use. Clean every part of the pump that comes into contact with breast milk.
● You can consider having a healthy caregiver who does not have COVID-19, is living in the same home, and is not at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 to feed the expressed breast milk to your baby.
● Ensure that the caregiver wears a mask when caring for your baby for the entire duration you are in isolation and throughout their quarantine period after you complete isolation.
Your breastmilk is the best nutrition you could offer your baby and can protect against several illnesses. If you are sick, you (or someone else) can give your infant expressed breast milk. You can also check with local healthcare facilities about donated breastmilk, just in case. Follow our blog for Newborn Parenting Tips.