Guest post by Hayden Stewart of Milk n Mamas Baby
Returning to the workforce can be a daunting and overwhelming experience for any new mom, particularly those who wish to continue breastfeeding their baby. It’s no secret that nursing provides all the key nutrients and vitamins a baby needs to thrive as well as establishing a strong bond with their mother. For many women maintaining that bond is critical upon returning to the workforce. While it can be challenging and time-consuming to get a routine down, many moms agree the challenges are worth it to extend their breastfeeding relationship. Below are some tips to help make the transition easier and fulfilling for everyone!
1. Find the Right Bottle
A few weeks before returning to the office and once a solid breastfeeding relationship has been established, take some time to find a bottle that your baby will take. A lot of moms don’t realize that finding the right bottle can be a challenge in itself, and no one needs the added stress of baby refusing a bottle.
2. Talk to Your Daycare Provider and/or Babysitter
Talk to your daycare provider before returning to work to be sure they will feed your baby your breastmilk. A lot of providers will, some will not. You will want to be prepared for this and know what your provider will do.
3. Find the Right Pump
Invest in a hospital grade pump. New moms will spend countless hours pumping while at the office, and a good efficient pump will help get keep supply boosted, and will also help make pumping sessions more productive. Finding the right pump is absolutely essential.
4. Establish and Stick to Your Routine
Routine will be key in reducing stress levels. Plan ahead and have everything ready for the next day. Mentally plan the day around when pump breaks can be taken, and make sure to stick to that schedule.
5. Ensure you Pump the Necessary Amount
Don’t be afraid to add supplements to help boost supply. Fenugreek and Mother’s Milk tea are both effective in boosting a low supply.
6. Practice Your Pumping Rights
Know your rights. If your company employs more than 50 people, you are entitled to pumping breaks in a private area up until the baby is one year old. Be persistent and fight for what you deserve.
7. Be Efficient
Develop some shortcuts. Purchase some special breast pump wipes to cut down on cleaning time. They are effective and safe to use.
8. Wear the Right Clothing
Find a hands-free bra so you can multi-task while pumping. Consider adding some pieces to your wardrobe that will be easy to pump in, such as dresses or tops that easily pull down.
9. Nurse Your Baby Whenever Possible
Nurse your baby every chance you get. This will help keep supply levels boosted, but also triggers the brain to release oxytocin. The release of oxytocin, also known as the mothering hormone, will help foster a strong and loving bond with your baby. Use this time to reconnect with your baby and relax from the day. Try to exclusively nurse over the weekends.
10. Learn to Relax
Lastly and most importantly, relax. A stressed mama will likely experience problems with supply. Take care of yourself. Eat well, drink lots of water, find time to be active, and sleep as much as one can with a new baby.
Going back to work after a new baby can be emotional and difficult. Be patient with yourself, and give yourself some credit for the hard work you are doing. These days may feel long now, but they pass in the blink of an eye.
About the Author:
Hayden Stewart is a Public Relations Specialist for Milk N Mamas Baby. She regularly produces content for a variety of blogs centered around breastfeeding, pumping, and obstacles that new mothers face.