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Breastfeeding and coronavirus

26 replies

dearyme89 · 18/03/2020 16:40

Apologies if this has been done elsewhere (I'm sure it will have been) but I've searched and cannot find anything, but please feel free to link if it has.

I'm about to give birth, and feel really worried about breastfeeding. I was absolutely going to, but now worry that there hasn't been enough time to conclusively show how it can affect my baby should I get coronavirus.

I know that breast milk is great for their immunity but I worry that it won't be as good as it could be bad if it was to get passed to baby.

does anyone have any other information that I might have not been told/seen?

OP posts:
ZigZaggyZoo · 18/03/2020 16:43

There have been tests on breastmilk and it doesn't seem to contain the virus. I will try to find the link. Good luck with the birth.

BergamotMouse · 18/03/2020 16:44

I can't think of a better reason to breastfeed!! If you get it you will pass all the antibodies through the breast milk and there will be less chance of your baby getting it. I had lots of viruses in the early months which my baby didn't get and I put it down to breastfeeding.

thelostartofkeepingsecrets · 18/03/2020 16:46

Hi, the WHO recommend breastfeeding -

Hope that helps.

anniefrangipani · 18/03/2020 16:47

There are very very few illnesses where it's not better to breastfeed your baby through them - you pass on your antibodies and immunity through your breast milk. However lots of in-person breastfeeding support is not running at the moment, so now might be a good time to join all the Facebook groups (I recommend the LLL GB one as well as your local LLL one, and my council-run breastfeeding group has a Facebook group as well) and find what support is available now before it's 3am and you're knackered and desperate.

ZigZaggyZoo · 18/03/2020 16:47

"Limited studies on breastfeeding women with COVID-19 and other coronavirus infections have not detected the virus in breast milk"

It seems baby would be more at risk from the closeness to you but wouldn't the baby be close to you regardless of how they're being fed?!

GrumpyHoonMain · 18/03/2020 16:54

Your MW and HV will probably tell you to bf where possible because it passes on antibodies. The baby won’t get CV it you practice good hygiene and safe coughing.

Lau7 · 18/03/2020 17:05

Look up LaLeche league (LLL) for breastfeeding support and advice near you. I’m still bf my 15 month old and will absolutely carry on with all this happening! More reason to bf at the moment than ever before!

Foldinthecheese · 18/03/2020 17:08

In addition to the points mentioned above, I wouldn’t want to be reliant on formula at the moment, which seems to be difficult to find in many shops. Breastfeeding Younger Babies and Beyond is also a good FB group if you’re struggling to find face to face support.

Kirky36 · 19/05/2020 03:26

Any new mums struggling with breast feeding and lack of health professionals to help during lockdown? I really want it to work but have a very squirmy feeder don't know why think it might be wind. Don't know how to fix it - thinking on starting bottle but feel guilty. Daughter 5weeks now. Everyone says it gets better but feel it is getting worse. just want to see someone face to face for help! Anyone else the same? Daughter is gaining weight but just dread every feed due to pulling off arching back etc. Tried diff positions winding often changing breast nothing seems to help!

Times10 · 19/05/2020 04:08

@Kirky36 have you tried expressing a bit before the feed? Could be the milk is coming out too fast, so baby struggles to drink comfortably. You wouldn’t need to express too much, just enough for your breast to feel less full.

MrsTerryPratchett · 19/05/2020 04:21

There are very very few illnesses where it's not better to breastfeed your baby through them

This. And with the supply chain issues, I'd rather BF than rely on something from a shop.

MKCH · 19/05/2020 04:38

It does get easier, I promise! I know that really doesn't help but honestly it does. I have a 5 month old and that feels like ages away at 6 weeks but truthfully, get through the next 2-4 weeks and it all just kind of clicks.

So - my little girl struggled a bit with trapped wind too. I did these exercises with her to see if it helped -

And also this one -

Maybe try those out to see if it helps. It can result in some absolutely tremendous farts.
Lots of skin to skin.
Warm baths.
Patience and biscuits 😊
I remember 6 weeks ish being particularly fussy - is there a growth spurt / leap around then too?

MKCH · 19/05/2020 04:39

And sorry - on the main topic - 100% breastfeed, wear a face mask if you are concerned, but they are even doing studies on breast milk (in America I think) to see if it contains COVID-19 antibodies.

geojojo · 19/05/2020 04:40

I've always found that when my children are sick I'm so grateful they are breastfeeding as I know they are stilll hydrated and getting nutrition. They have always breastfed a lot more when ill. I was actually in the process of weaning my dd when cv hit and I decided not to in case she got it. I have been grateful for this as she's been really sick in the last few weeks. Also I've read there's no evidence of passing it through milk. Good luck!

Kirky36 · 19/05/2020 05:42

@Times10 as it happens throughout feed I wasn't sure if it would be that - I have also expressed 1-2 Oz the last couple of feeds to give colief as someone suggested this may help
@MKCH - thanks we do bicycle legs before each feed but will try the techniques suggested. She didn't take much at night feed just fed for about 5mins then squirmed then just lay with nipple in mouth and fell asleep. I think it is exhausting us both!!

NeurotrashWarrior · 19/05/2020 06:06

Ah you poor thing; I had this. Is she your first?

Have you looked at biological nursing on YouTube?

NeurotrashWarrior · 19/05/2020 06:08

Or lying down to feed? My eldest was very tiny and struggled with my strong let down; I had to feed lying down till he was about 3 mo, but I hadn't known about bio nursing either.

Singingatmidnight · 19/05/2020 06:26

Definitely give breastfeeding a go if you want to - but don't worry about formula, it's all settled down and it's straightforward to get in the shops again now.

NeurotrashWarrior · 19/05/2020 06:40

@kirky36 I would start a new thread, link here and I'll pop over and I'm sure some other lovely mn can also try to help.

It sounds a little like a positioning issue; ime this age is very normal as their head is growing lots, mouth changing, your milk is really kicking in and I bet she's been boosting it too. This stage is classic fussy feeding but it can be helped with positioning and lots of cake 🍰

Kirky36 · 19/05/2020 06:44

@NeurotrashWarrior thank you I did try the laid back one but felt she couldn't breathe and brought up a bit of feed during feeding - will give it another go. I like the side lying but daughter just falls asleep think it's too rehabbing fit her !!

Kirky36 · 19/05/2020 06:48

@NeurotrashWarrior have started new thread but not sure how to link it

Camomila · 19/05/2020 07:38

I'm pretty sure I had coronavirus mid march (had fever, cough, etc plus chest pains and shortness of breath) I'm young, fit and don't have asthma so doubt it was anything else making me short of breath.

Anyway I fed DS2 throughout (he was 8 weeks at a time), he did develop a cough but he didn't get a temperature unlike me and DS1. (DS1 was the first to get ill)

I'm glad I managed to keep feeding throughout because it was at the time when people were struggling to get formula, and also he did cough up his feed a few time, which would have been more stressful if I had do remake bottles.

Jrobhatch29 · 19/05/2020 08:02

My baby girl is 11 days old and this is the reason i AM breast feeding. Breast milk produces antibodies really quick after exposure to viruses x

Jrobhatch29 · 19/05/2020 08:04

My little girl very wriggly too and was feeding constantly but not getting much out. I ordered a breast pump and she has it in a bottle a few times a day now and we are both much happier

NeurotrashWarrior · 19/05/2020 09:52

Ok so positioning, chin right into breast and free the nose?

My second was constantly puking; it's very tough but it does get better!

If you are in the north there's a brilliant fb support group who might help.

They do breastsleep; and at this age always fall asleep after or during a feed. Nappies and weight ok?

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