Work-from-home tips for breastfeeding moms amid pandemic

Be clear about your work setup and your needs as a breastfeeding mom. Your schedule needs to be transparent.

By Dr Suresh Birajdar

Breastfeeding is vital for both the mother and baby. It will help the baby to build stronger immune systems and provide maximum nutrition for growing infants, lowering the risk of certain complications in mother and child. But breastfeeding is not always an easy task, especially when it comes to taking care of the baby and career at the same time. It can be time-consuming, energy isolating, and unpredictable. However, since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, wherein work from home has become the new normal, millennial moms are trying to get acquainted with striking a work/life balance. For a smooth transition, it is essential for nursing moms to be proactive and avoid getting discouraged to breastfeed the baby amidst the work chaos.

Working from home is encouraged during pandemic to slash down the risk of Covid-19. But, work from home can be a boon for nursing moms. It can give you enough time to spend with your kids, you can also see your baby achieving those developmental milestones, and can help you breastfeed the baby with ease. Though WFH moms can be successful, it can also lead to fatigue and burnout in new moms. Yes, things can turn awry when you are in front of your computer, but juggling a crying baby, video calls, or other chores. Here, things can go haywire.  But, you need to remain calm and composed to manage your work and mom duties.

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Know how you can breastfeed your baby while working from home

• Be clear about your work setup and your needs as a breastfeeding mom. Your schedule needs to be transparent. Don’t forget to take breastfeeding breaks as and when the baby is hungry even if you are required to be in front of the computer, you have to speak to your employer about this inevitable responsibility.

• Block these breaks on your work calendars or inform your colleagues that you will be unavailable during that time period.

• Avoid planning meetings around your breastfeeding breaks, if an urgent video call comes up while breastfeeding then you can turn off the camera and continue nursing the baby or put a blanket on the baby while on a video call if you continue to breastfeed. Or the meetings can be even rescheduled. Nothing should stop you from reaching your breastfeeding goal.

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• Try to make the most out of WFH as being at home will help you to easily wash and sterilise your pump parts and bottles, and even store your milk straight in your freezer.

• Avoid getting caught up in household chores in the middle of work hours as it will not end. Prioritise your latching over regular household chores. It is the need of the hour for an employer to create a supportive atmosphere for women when it comes to breastfeeding.

(The writer is Neonatologist & Paediatrician, Motherhood Hospital, Kharghar)

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