Women have got a special gift of nurturing their babies by breast feeding them.However, all women are not able to en- cash this opportunity given by God to directly breast feed their babies.
The reason is either their economic condition or their professional aspirations, which compels them to go for work after delivery.
All of us know that breast milk is very important for new born babies and is the only source of food for them. So, babies must not be kept away from breast milk at any cost.Rather, with little planning, knowledge and arrangements working moms too can ensure that their babies get their breast milk even in their absence.
The most important step is to arrange for a day care centre or a reliable and loving baby sitter at home, weeks before going to office; so that baby becomes familiar with the baby sitter. This also provides time to train baby sitters in the following –
* to prepare breast milk bottle,
* to bottle feed breast milk,
* when to feed ,
* frequency of feeds,
* burping tips,
* maintaining proper hygiene,
* bottle and nipple cleaning
Most important and essential investment for working mothers if they are to continue breast feeding is to buy a good quality breast pump.There are various options available in the market, but moms should select the one in which she is comfortable . She should practice pumping few weeks ahead of starting her work.
This helps the mother as well as the baby to adapt to the new change and ensures that the baby takes the feed from a bottle even when mom is not at home.
However, it’s advisable to offer bottle to newborn only after 2-3 weeks. This can be done in a gradual process like starting with 1 bottle feed and then slowly increasing the frequency of bottle feeds.
It’s very important for mothers to practice pumping at home before returning to work. This helps to provide ample time to become acquainted with expressing breast-milk.
It’s always advisable to pump milk after every three hours or so, or more often as per the need. It’s also important to regularize breast pumping activity.
This helps the body to create milk accordingly and thus produce sufficient breast milk for the baby.
This will also prevent engorgement and leakage of excess breast milk. At work place, take permission to pump the excess milk and store it in the refrigerators with proper label of date and time.
Expressed breast milk should be thawed under running water and can be heated by running it under warm (not hot) tap water. Breast milk should not be left out to thaw at room temperature nor should be heated in boiling water or microwave.There is specific procedure to thaw expressed milk and hence baby sitter must be made aware of these facts in advance so that she handles the process of thawing and feeding milk correctly.
Bottles should be used in the order they were labeled. Unused bottles that were thawed should be discarded after 24 hours. Partially used bottles should not be refrigerated or reheated and should be discarded