Breastfeeding

Going Back to Work and Continuing to Breastfeed Employers in the past have recognized 6 weeks as a reasonable time to recover from the birth of a baby. On occasion, your healthcare professional may require that you stay home longer because of a special medical problem. Financial considerations may require that you return to work earlier. It is well documented that the longer a parent can be with their baby and establish a good breastfeeding relationship, the better they will maintain their milk supply with pumping while separated from the baby. This fact has motivated more and more new parents to work something out with their employers.

The Last Three Months of Pregnancy • Learn as much as you can about breastfeeding. • Attend breastfeeding classes. • Plan for your leave.

– Talk to your employer about your decision to breastfeed. – Provide your employer with information about why an employer should support breastfeeding. – Plan your first day back to be on a Wednesday or Thursday. – If possible, plan for your first week or two to be short weeks.

• Investigate pump options. • Check out childcare options.

First Weeks at Home • DON’T think about work! • Enjoy this time with your precious baby and concentrate on getting breastfeeding off to a great start. • Contact the lactation consultant if you have concerns or questions. Baby is About Four Weeks Old • Introduce your baby to a bottle using expressed breast milk . • Baby needs “reminder” bottle every 7 to 10 days until you return to work. Three to Four Weeks Before Returning toWork • Begin storing breast milk for when you return to work. • Make a visit(s) to your childcare provider. Give childcare provider directions about handling breast milk. • Make a visit to your workplace. Find an area where you will feel comfortable pumping. • Organize baby’s bag.

• Plan a “practice run” of your first day by getting up at the time you think will be your regular wake-up time. Get yourself and baby ready and take them to the childcare provider. If possible, leave baby for a short stay that includes a feeding. Do something special for yourself during these few hours .

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