As we enter the cold and flu season, a common concern is the continued health of our babies. If a mother becomes ill with a cold, flu or mild infection, the obvious concern is potentially passing this onto the baby. If a mother is ill, should she continue to breastfeed???
The answer is YES!!! As your baby is always in close proximity to you, they have already been exposed to whatever is causing you to feel unwell. Your body will quickly produce specific antibodies that will help to protect against your illness. Hopefully, your baby will not get sick at all, and if they do, they may get a milder case due to the protection you are passing on to them. Good hygiene, especially good hand washing is always important.
Try to conserve your energy. Crawl into bed with your baby, rest, and nurse. Increase your fluids as you normally would if you had a cold or flu. Tylenol or ibuprofen might be helpful. Try to avoid any medications that can “dry up secretions” if possible, as they may have a negative effect on your supply.
Call your lactation Consultant if you have specific questions about medication or a treatment plan for your situation.