Friday, July 28, 2017

Breastfeeding In Public: What You Need To Know


Our very own Dr. Vandenberg shares a few of her favorite breastfeeding facts and lessons.

By: Dr. Maria Vandenberg, MD
Obstetrican/Gynecologist

August is National Breastfeeding Awareness Month and there are hundreds of articles and blogs supporting breastfeeding moms circling about.  Here is another. 

First, I, of course, support breastfeeding moms, but I also support formula feeding moms as well. Breastfeeding is an amazing experience and great for babies when it works, but it saddens me when I see moms feel guilty or disappointed if they use formula. I mostly formula fed my first kiddos and they have turned into wonderful, intelligent, happy children. No guilt here. We all do what is best for each of our kids and we need to support and encourage each other.

How many of you are working moms who breastfeed? Well, I’m right there with you. It’s hard, but so worth it if you are successful. Below you will find a list of my favorite pumping and breastfeeding facts and lessons I have learned along the way.

Facts
  • Did you know it is a federal law that companies with over 50 employees are required to provide a location (other than a restroom) and sufficient time for expressing milk for one year after the child’s birth? Check this out: Department of Labor 
  • In Wisconsin, you can breastfeed (it is illegal for anyone to ask you to move or cover up) your child anywhere it is legal for you to be. So, don’t break into a Taco Bell to breastfeed; however, if they are open, you can feed your child. Here is more info: State Breastfeeding Laws 
  • Most health insurances will supply a breast pump for breastfeeding moms!


Lessons
  • You can pump anywhere. The airport at empty terminals (although certainly, a strange man will sit next to you when every other seat is available). Bathroom stalls. The car. Even during oral exams through school/training. Pump through the awkwardness, my friends.
  • Like other articles have pointed out, your pump does talk; hopefully it just has nice things to say.
  • The milk you bring home each night really is liquid gold, and only other moms can understand how it feels to lose, spill, forget that precious milk. In fact, my entire supply of frozen milk was thawed because of a faulty circuit this summer. I was sobbing.
  • Your older children may become very interested in breasts and attempt to breastfeed your newest addition. This is endearing, but can be embarrassing in public.


While being a working mother who breastfeeds certainly has its struggles it is also a very rewarding experience for not only myself, but for my little one as well. Remember ladies: you are not alone when it comes to breastfeeding—the staff here at Women’s Care of Wisconsin is here to help, support and encourage you through your breastfeeding journey! 

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