Cat I take this medicine? Can I have a glass of wine with dinner? Should I breastfeed if I smoke?
These are all some of the most common questions and concerns that mothers who are breastfeeding or thinking about breastfeeding have. We'll tackle them one at a time.
If you are taking illegal drugs, then you are harming your baby right now – while you are pregnant. If you take these drugs after your pregnancy, then your baby would be better off with formula while you check yourself into rehab. You don't want to continue to expose your baby to these drugs through your breast milk. The drugs are also hurting you and your ability to be a mother, so if this applies to you, please get help.
There are very few medical conditions that require you to stop breastfeeding, even if you need medication. Make sure to tell your health care provider that you are breastfeeding and that you would like to continue breastfeeding. The two of you can work together to find a solution to whatever ails you.
I am sorry to have to say this, but the hardest part of getting proper treatment while you are breastfeeding is the doctors who are unwilling to look pas their Physician's Desk Reference for information on nursing. If you need treatment for something, it is very likely that you will have to go doctor shopping to find one who will work with you on finding a solution that keep you nursing. Doctors are not gods and are not perfect. Remember, you need to do your own homework as well and you need to be willing to find a SECOND OPINION when the first opinion is not all that you desire. I encourage you to read this article, which can help you find the right support and learn the right questions to ask:
Drugs are rated based on their risk to the baby during nursing. They range from safest (meaning that there is a lot of data to support the idea that no harm will come to your baby if you take the drug) to hazardous (meaning studies have shown significant and documented risk to the baby of breastfeeding mothers).
There are some drugs that have some risk, but potential benefit to the mother can outweigh those risks. Only your doctor can walk you through this, though you can certainly do your own research (and should, especially if your doctor isn't telling you what you want to hear). Here is a list of some drugs and their lactation risk categories:
It is best if you stop smoking. I'm sure you know the health risks involved, so I won't turn this into a lecture, but that is the ideal option. I know that can be easier said than done. I watched my father struggle to quit smoking my entire life until 4 years ago, when he won his 36-year-old battle. (He started smoking long before my birth.)
Even if you can't stop, you should go ahead and breastfeed your baby. The health benefits to breastfeeding can counteract some of the negative impact of the smoke to your baby.
f you do a little bit of homework on your own, I'm sure you will find other opinions.
My opinion: Go ahead...have a drink. Aim to drink shortly after nursing to maximize the amount of time it has to pass out of your system before your baby wants to nurse again.
If you drink to excess, it would be best to have an alternative feeding method available for your baby until the alcohol has had some time to pass through your system.
I would like to give a sweet mama from babyfit a special thank you for giving me permission to use her info. Thank you Christine Amsden!! Also, I want to invite you all to look at her new website! www.christineamsden.com
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